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A Second Opinion with Senator Bill Frist, M.D.

Dec 20, 2021

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Dr. Wes Ely is a pulmonologist, critical care physician and tenured professor at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. He is also the founder and codirector of the Critical Illness, Brain Dysfunction, and Survivorship Center, an organization devoted to research and ongoing care for patients and families affected by critical illness.

Dr. Ely’s groundbreaking investigations introduced crucial changes that reshaped intensive care: minimizing sedation, maximizing mobility, attending to the family, and providing supportive aftercare.

His new book, Every Deep-Drawn Breath (, rethinks critical care – a shift that was sparked in Dr. Ely when suddenly he found himself not as the physician, but as the loved one at the bedside of a sick family member.  Dr. Ely is donating all his net proceeds from this book to a fund established to help ICU survivors and their families.