Last updated on: 11/10/2008 | Author:

Atul Gawande, MD, MPH Biography

Associate Professor of Surgery at Harvard Medical School
Pro to the question "Should the Death Penalty Be Legal?"

“I have personally been in favor of the death penalty. I was a senior official in the 1992 Clinton presidential campaign and in the administration, and in that role I defended the President’s stance in support of capital punishment. I have no illusions that the death penalty deters anyone from murder. I also have great concern about the ability of our justice system to avoid putting someone innocent to death. However, I believe there are some human beings who do such evil as to deserve to die. I am not troubled that Timothy McVeigh was executed for the 168 people he had killed in the Oklahoma City bombing, or that John Wayne Gacy was for committing 33 murders.”

“When Law and Ethics Collide — Why Physicians Participate in Executions,” New England Journal of Medicine, Mar. 23, 2006

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Associate Professor, Surgery, Harvard Medical School
  • Associate Professor, Health Policy and Management, Harvard School of Public Health
  • Columnist, “Notes of a Surgeon,” New England Journal of Medicine
  • Staff Writter, the New Yorker, 1998-present
  • Director, Global Patient Safety Challenge, World Health Organization
  • Senior Adviser, US Department of Health and Human Services, 1992-1995
  • Former Health-care Researcher for Congressman Jim Cooper (D-TN)
  • MPH (Master in Public Health), Harvard School of Public Health, 1999
  • MD, Harvard Medical School, 1995
  • MA, Political Science, Oxford University, 1989
  • BAS (Bachelor in Applied Science), Stanford University, 1987
  • None found
Quoted in:
  1. Should the Death Penalty Be Legal?
  2. Is Participation in Executions Ethical for Medical Professionals?