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James Dunford

Title(s)Senate Emeritus, Emergency Medical Services
SchoolHealth Sciences
Phone619-988-2558
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    Collapse Biography 
    Collapse Education and Training
    Syracuse University, Syracuse, NYB.A.06/1972Chemistry
    Columbia University, College of Physicians & Surgeons, New York, NYMD06/1976Medicine
    UC San Diego Health Center, San Diego, CA06/1979Internal Medicine
    Collapse Awards and Honors
    Society for Academic Emergency Medicine1996Best Faculty Discussant - National CPC
    UCSD Emergency Medicine Residency1997  - 1998Golden Apple Teaching Award
    CA Governor Gray Davis2001Commendation for Leadership in Cardiovascular Disease
    Combined Health Agencies of San Diego2002Volunteer of the Year Award
    Downtown San Diego Partnership2003Alonzo Award
    AHA Western States2004Lawrence M. Herman, MD Advocacy Award
    UC San Diego Chancellor's Associates2006Faculty Excellence Award (Community Service)
    U.S. Metropolitan Medical Directors2007Michael K. Copass Award
    U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness 2007Pursuit of Solutions Innovation Award
    San Diego County Medical Society2007  - 2015Top Doctor (Emergency Medicine)
    AHA Western States2008Physician Volunteer of the Year
    San Diego Downtown Business Partnership2008Vic Kops Humanitarian Award
    San Diego Business Journal2009Physician Health Care Champion Award
    UC San Diego School of Medicine2010Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award
    St. Vincent de Paul Village2013Bishop Leo Maher Service to the Homeless Award
    American College of Emergency Physicians 2015Outstanding Contribution in EMS
    Journal of EMS2017James O. Page Leadership Award
    Family Health Centers of San Diego2017Spirit of the Barrio Award

    Collapse Overview 
    Collapse Overview
    Dr. James Dunford is an Emeritus Professor of Emergency Medicine after serving as an emergency medicine clinician (1980-2015), helicopter flight physician (1980-1986), EMS researcher and mentor. After joining the Dept. of Emergency Medicine faculty in 1980, Jim established the Division of EMS while acting as Base Station Director (1984-1993), Medical Director of Life Flight San Diego (1993-95) and Medical Director of the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department. In 1988, Jim founded and directed the UCSD Emergency Medicine Residency Program. From 1997-2018, he served as the first EMS Medical Director of the City of San Diego.

    As President of the Board of the San Diego American Heart Association, Jim led the development of San Diego’s regional systems of care for cardiac arrest (San Diego Project Heart Beat), heart attack (STEMI) and stroke. In 2000, Jim partnered with the San Diego Police Department to develop the Serial Inebriate Program (SIP), a national model addressing chronically homeless individuals with alcohol use disorder. For this work, Jim received the 2006 U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness National Research Award. In 2008, Jim created the Resource Access Program (RAP) to assist “superusers”, which was selected by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) as a model of innovation. In 2011, Jim partnered with the United Way to implement Project 25 to demonstrate the economic and medical advantages of “housing first”. Jim promoted San Diego Fire’s early adoption of handheld, cloud-based electronic medical records and supported the UCSD Department of Emergency Medicine's successful pursuit of a $15M federal Beacon grant. San Diego's health information exchange (HIE) became the nation's first to implement real-time, bi-directional EMS data exchange. In 2012, Jim collaborated with 211 San Diego and a regional housing provider to create the Community Information Exchange (CIE) to link the region’s community-based organizations (and one-day the regional HIE) to improve care coordination for San Diego's most vulnerable.

    Jim’s research interests range from NIH trials addressing the prehospital management of cardiac arrest, major trauma, acute stroke and heart attack to novel high-tech, high-touch approaches to complex patients. Jim served as EM expert on the National Quality Forum Dual Eligibles Measure Application Partnership (2011-16) and is currently Chair of the California EMS Commission. He is a member of the Board of 211 San Diego and the Medical Director of McAlister Institute for Treatment and Education, overseeing multiple substance use disorder clinics as well as the San Diego regional Sobering Services Center. Jim was selected by his peers to the UCSD Academy of Clinician Scholars. He serves on the National Advisory Board of the Gold Humanism Honor Society, continues to teach and is currently involved in an ambitious effort to create a sustainable accountable community for health in San Diego.

    Collapse ORNG Applications 
    Collapse Featured Publications

    Collapse Bibliographic 
    Collapse Publications
    Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Researchers can login to make corrections and additions, or contact us for help.
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    1. Goebel M, Tainter C, Kahn C, Dunford JV, Serra J, Pierce J, Donofrio JJ. An Urban 9-1-1 System's Experience with Left Ventricular Assist Device Patients. Prehosp Emerg Care. 2019 Jul-Aug; 23(4):560-565. PMID: 30285520.
      View in: PubMed
    2. Coffey C, Serra J, Goebel M, Espinoza S, Castillo E, Dunford J. Prehospital Acute ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction Identification in San Diego: A Retrospective Analysis of the Effect of a New Software Algorithm. J Emerg Med. 2018 07; 55(1):71-77. PMID: 29731285.
      View in: PubMed
    3. Kudenchuk PJ, Leroux BG, Daya M, Rea T, Vaillancourt C, Morrison LJ, Callaway CW, Christenson J, Ornato JP, Dunford JV, Wittwer L, Weisfeldt ML, Aufderheide TP, Vilke GM, Idris AH, Stiell IG, Colella MR, Kayea T, Egan D, Desvigne-Nickens P, Gray P, Gray R, Straight R, Dorian P. Antiarrhythmic Drugs for Nonshockable-Turned-Shockable Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest: The ALPS Study (Amiodarone, Lidocaine, or Placebo). Circulation. 2017 Nov 28; 136(22):2119-2131. PMID: 28904070.
      View in: PubMed
    4. Kudenchuk PJ, Brown SP, Daya M, Rea T, Nichol G, Morrison LJ, Leroux B, Vaillancourt C, Wittwer L, Callaway CW, Christenson J, Egan D, Ornato JP, Weisfeldt ML, Stiell IG, Idris AH, Aufderheide TP, Dunford JV, Colella MR, Vilke GM, Brienza AM, Desvigne-Nickens P, Gray PC, Gray R, Seals N, Straight R, Dorian P. Amiodarone, Lidocaine, or Placebo in Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest. N Engl J Med. 2016 May 05; 374(18):1711-22. PMID: 27043165.
      View in: PubMed
    5. Villarreal J, Kahn CA, Dunford JV, Castillo EM, Clark RF. Prehospital activated charcoal use in antipsychotic overdose. Am J Emerg Med. 2016 Feb; 34(2):316-7. PMID: 26612705.
      View in: PubMed
    6. Villarreal J, Kahn CA, Dunford JV, Patel E, Clark RF. A retrospective review of the prehospital use of activated charcoal. Am J Emerg Med. 2015 Jan; 33(1):56-9. PMID: 25455049.
      View in: PubMed
    7. Davis DP, Aguilar SA, Smith K, Husa RD, Minokadeh A, Vilke G, Sell R, Fisher R, Brainard C, Dunford JV. Preliminary report of a mathematical model of ventilation and intrathoracic pressure applied to prehospital patients with severe traumatic brain injury. Prehosp Emerg Care. 2015 Apr-Jun; 19(2):328-35. PMID: 25291381.
      View in: PubMed
    8. Aguilar SA, Lee J, Dunford JV, Castillo E, Lam B, Choy J, Patel E, Pringle J, Serra J. Assessment of the addition of prehospital continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) to an urban emergency medical services (EMS) system in persons with severe respiratory distress. J Emerg Med. 2013 Aug; 45(2):210-9. PMID: 23756329.
      View in: PubMed
    9. Hölscher T, Dunford JV, Schlachetzki F, Boy S, Hemmen T, Meyer BC, Serra J, Powers J, Voie A. Prehospital stroke diagnosis and treatment in ambulances and helicopters-a concept paper. Am J Emerg Med. 2013 Apr; 31(4):743-7. PMID: 23415600.
      View in: PubMed
    10. Jensen AM, Dunford J. Putting the 'rap' in 'rapport'. JEMS. 2013 Jan; 38(1):38-41. PMID: 23627233.
      View in: PubMed
    11. Davis DP, Sell RE, Wilkes N, Sarno R, Husa RD, Castillo EM, Lawrence B, Fisher R, Brainard C, Dunford JV. Electrical and mechanical recovery of cardiac function following out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. Resuscitation. 2013 Jan; 84(1):25-30. PMID: 22982154.
      View in: PubMed
    12. Patel M, Dunford JV, Aguilar S, Castillo E, Patel E, Fisher R, Ochs G, Mahmud E. Pre-hospital electrocardiography by emergency medical personnel: effects on scene and transport times for chest pain and ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction patients. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2012 Aug 28; 60(9):806-11. PMID: 22840530.
      View in: PubMed
    13. Tadros AS, Castillo EM, Chan TC, Jensen AM, Patel E, Watts K, Dunford JV. Effects of an emergency medical services-based resource access program on frequent users of health services. Prehosp Emerg Care. 2012 Oct-Dec; 16(4):541-7. PMID: 22712694.
      View in: PubMed
    14. Aguilar SA, Patel M, Castillo E, Patel E, Fisher R, Ochs G, Pringle J, Mahmud E, Dunford JV. Gender differences in scene time, transport time, and total scene to hospital arrival time determined by the use of a prehospital electrocardiogram in patients with complaint of chest pain. J Emerg Med. 2012 Aug; 43(2):291-7. PMID: 22325551.
      View in: PubMed
    15. Bohm K, Vaillancourt C, Charette ML, Dunford J, Castrén M. In patients with out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, does the provision of dispatch cardiopulmonary resuscitation instructions as opposed to no instructions improve outcome: a systematic review of the literature. Resuscitation. 2011 Dec; 82(12):1490-5. PMID: 21925129.
      View in: PubMed
    16. Aufderheide TP, Nichol G, Rea TD, Brown SP, Leroux BG, Pepe PE, Kudenchuk PJ, Christenson J, Daya MR, Dorian P, Callaway CW, Idris AH, Andrusiek D, Stephens SW, Hostler D, Davis DP, Dunford JV, Pirrallo RG, Stiell IG, Clement CM, Craig A, Van Ottingham L, Schmidt TA, Wang HE, Weisfeldt ML, Ornato JP, Sopko G. A trial of an impedance threshold device in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. N Engl J Med. 2011 Sep 01; 365(9):798-806. PMID: 21879897.
      View in: PubMed
    17. Vaillancourt C, Charette ML, Bohm K, Dunford J, Castrén M. In out-of-hospital cardiac arrest patients, does the description of any specific symptoms to the emergency medical dispatcher improve the accuracy of the diagnosis of cardiac arrest: a systematic review of the literature. Resuscitation. 2011 Dec; 82(12):1483-9. PMID: 21704442.
      View in: PubMed
    18. Landman AB, Rokos IC, Burns K, Van Gelder CM, Fisher RM, Dunford JV, Cone DC, Bogucki S. An open, interoperable, and scalable prehospital information technology network architecture. Prehosp Emerg Care. 2011 Apr-Jun; 15(2):149-57. PMID: 21294627.
      View in: PubMed
    19. Sell RE, Sarno R, Lawrence B, Castillo EM, Fisher R, Brainard C, Dunford JV, Davis DP. Minimizing pre- and post-defibrillation pauses increases the likelihood of return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC). Resuscitation. 2010 Jul; 81(7):822-5. PMID: 20398991.
      View in: PubMed
    20. Rokos IC, French WJ, Koenig WJ, Stratton SJ, Nighswonger B, Strunk B, Jewell J, Mahmud E, Dunford JV, Hokanson J, Smith SW, Baran KW, Swor R, Berman A, Wilson BH, Aluko AO, Gross BW, Rostykus PS, Salvucci A, Dev V, McNally B, Manoukian SV, King SB. Integration of pre-hospital electrocardiograms and ST-elevation myocardial infarction receiving center (SRC) networks: impact on Door-to-Balloon times across 10 independent regions. JACC Cardiovasc Interv. 2009 Apr; 2(4):339-46. PMID: 19463447.
      View in: PubMed
    21. Dunford J, Buchanan D, Jain S. Hospital resources: a practical treatment plan for homeless patients. Virtual Mentor. 2009 Jan 01; 11(1):19-25. PMID: 23190481.
      View in: PubMed
    22. Dunford JV, Lucas J, Vent N, Clark RF, Cantrell FL. Asphyxiation due to dry ice in a walk-in freezer. J Emerg Med. 2009 May; 36(4):353-6. PMID: 18814998.
      View in: PubMed
    23. Ramanujam P, Castillo E, Patel E, Vilke G, Wilson MP, Dunford JV. Prehospital transport time intervals for acute stroke patients. J Emerg Med. 2009 Jul; 37(1):40-5. PMID: 18722734.
      View in: PubMed
    24. Ramanujam P, Guluma KZ, Castillo EM, Chacon M, Jensen MB, Patel E, Linnick W, Dunford JV. Accuracy of stroke recognition by emergency medical dispatchers and paramedics--San Diego experience. Prehosp Emerg Care. 2008 Jul-Sep; 12(3):307-13. PMID: 18584497.
      View in: PubMed
    25. Sloane CM, Chan TC, Levine SD, Dunford JV, Neuman T, Vilke GM. Serum troponin I measurement of subjects exposed to the Taser X-26. J Emerg Med. 2008 Jul; 35(1):29-32. PMID: 18296010.
      View in: PubMed
    26. Brown JP, Mahmud E, Dunford JV, Ben-Yehuda O. Effect of prehospital 12-lead electrocardiogram on activation of the cardiac catheterization laboratory and door-to-balloon time in ST-segment elevation acute myocardial infarction. Am J Cardiol. 2008 Jan 15; 101(2):158-61. PMID: 18178399.
      View in: PubMed
    27. Davis DP, Hwang JQ, Dunford JV. Rate of decline in oxygen saturation at various pulse oximetry values with prehospital rapid sequence intubation. Prehosp Emerg Care. 2008 Jan-Mar; 12(1):46-51. PMID: 18189177.
      View in: PubMed
    28. Holmes S, Smith S, Borthwick L, Dunford J, Rogers M, Bishop N, Grabowski PS. CMT3 alters mitochondrial function in murine osteoclast lineage cells. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2008 Jan 25; 365(4):840-5. PMID: 18036558.
      View in: PubMed
    29. Levine SD, Sloane CM, Chan TC, Dunford JV, Vilke GM. Cardiac monitoring of human subjects exposed to the taser. J Emerg Med. 2007 Aug; 33(2):113-7. PMID: 17692758.
      View in: PubMed
    30. Davis DP, Fisher R, Aguilar S, Metz M, Ochs G, McCallum-Brown L, Ramanujam P, Buono C, Vilke GM, Chan TC, Dunford JV. The feasibility of a regional cardiac arrest receiving system. Resuscitation. 2007 Jul; 74(1):44-51. PMID: 17346870.
      View in: PubMed
    31. Davis DP, Douglas DJ, Koenig W, Carrison D, Buono C, Dunford JV. Hyperventilation following aero-medical rapid sequence intubation may be a deliberate response to hypoxemia. Resuscitation. 2007 Jun; 73(3):354-61. PMID: 17291673.
      View in: PubMed
    32. Davis DP, Fisher R, Buono C, Brainard C, Smith S, Ochs G, Poste JC, Dunford JV. Predictors of intubation success and therapeutic value of paramedic airway management in a large, urban EMS system. Prehosp Emerg Care. 2006 Jul-Sep; 10(3):356-62. PMID: 16801280.
      View in: PubMed
    33. Dunford JV, Castillo EM, Chan TC, Vilke GM, Jenson P, Lindsay SP. Impact of the San Diego Serial Inebriate Program on use of emergency medical resources. Ann Emerg Med. 2006 Apr; 47(4):328-36. PMID: 16546617.
      View in: PubMed
    34. Vilke GM, Chan TC, Dunford JV, Metz M, Ochs G, Smith A, Fisher R, Poste JC, McCallum-Brown L, Davis DP. The three-phase model of cardiac arrest as applied to ventricular fibrillation in a large, urban emergency medical services system. Resuscitation. 2005 Mar; 64(3):341-6. PMID: 15733764.
      View in: PubMed
    35. Davis DP, Heister R, Poste JC, Hoyt DB, Ochs M, Dunford JV. Ventilation patterns in patients with severe traumatic brain injury following paramedic rapid sequence intubation. Neurocrit Care. 2005; 2(2):165-71. PMID: 16159059.
      View in: PubMed
    36. Davis DP, Dunford JV, Poste JC, Ochs M, Holbrook T, Fortlage D, Size MJ, Kennedy F, Hoyt DB. The impact of hypoxia and hyperventilation on outcome after paramedic rapid sequence intubation of severely head-injured patients. J Trauma. 2004 Jul; 57(1):1-8; discussion 8-10. PMID: 15284540.
      View in: PubMed
    37. Davis DP, Dunford JV, Ochs M, Park K, Hoyt DB. The use of quantitative end-tidal capnometry to avoid inadvertent severe hyperventilation in patients with head injury after paramedic rapid sequence intubation. J Trauma. 2004 Apr; 56(4):808-14. PMID: 15187747.
      View in: PubMed
    38. Dunford JV, Davis DP, Ochs M, Doney M, Hoyt DB. Incidence of transient hypoxia and pulse rate reactivity during paramedic rapid sequence intubation. Ann Emerg Med. 2003 Dec; 42(6):721-8. PMID: 14634593.
      View in: PubMed
    39. Chan TC, Vilke GM, Smith S, Sparrow W, Dunford JV. Impact of an after-hours on-call emergency physician on ambulance transports from a county jail. Prehosp Emerg Care. 2003 Jul-Sep; 7(3):327-31. PMID: 12879382.
      View in: PubMed
    40. Mosesso VN, Dunford J, Blackwell T, Griswell JK. Prehospital therapy for acute congestive heart failure: state of the art. Prehosp Emerg Care. 2003 Jan-Mar; 7(1):13-23. PMID: 12540139.
      View in: PubMed
    41. Dunford JV. Emergency medical dispatch. Emerg Med Clin North Am. 2002 Nov; 20(4):859-75. PMID: 12476884.
      View in: PubMed
    42. Dunford J, Domeier RM, Blackwell T, Mears G, Overton J, Rivera-Rivera EJ, Swor R. Performance measurements in emergency medical services. Prehosp Emerg Care. 2002 Jan-Mar; 6(1):92-8. PMID: 11789658.
      View in: PubMed