Daniel Hall, MD, MDiv, MHSc, FACS - Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion
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Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion


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Daniel Hall, MD, MDiv, MHSc, FACS

CHERP COIN Investigator

Associate Professor of Surgery, University of Pittsburgh Presbyterian Hospital

Core Faculty, Center for Bioethics and Health Law, University of Pittsburgh


The Rev. Daniel E. Hall, M.D., M.Div, M.H.Sc. is Associate Professor of Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh and Core Investigator at the VA Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion. Dr. Hall is general surgeon with training in both moral philosophy and theology interested in the ethics of surgery. His research focuses on improving the decision-making and preoperative care of frail patients scheduled for elective surgery. Other research focuses on improving the quality and efficiency of IRB review throughout the VA healthcare system, and using qualitative and quantitative methods to describe how patients and surgeons negotiate the process of informed consent for clinical surgery. He is also interested in how surgical residency shapes the character of surgeons-in-training and how best to form the virtues of character necessary for good surgical practice.

Dr. Hall earned degrees in medicine and theology from Yale University before completing his surgical training at the University of Pittsburgh. He is also an ordained priest in the Episcopal Church with interests in the theology of medicine. He was the first John Templeton Fellow in Religion and Medicine at Duke University where his research focused on epistemology, moral philosophy, religious measurement, and the ways in which medical decision-making is influenced by religious and secular worldviews. He has published and lectured on ethics and the role religion plays in the context of clinical medicine. His clinical interests focus on both minimally invasive, emergency general surgery, and surgical palliative care.

Dr. Hall completed a VA HSR&D Career Development Award (CDA-2) providing him with the experience and training to become a leading researcher in the field of surgical ethics. His CDA research was on understanding and improving the process of informed consent for surgery throughout the VA. In addition, and in collaboration with the Veterans Engineering Resource Center/Office of Systems Redesign (VERC/OSR), he led a HSR&D funded (SDR 11-399-1), multi-site research project to improve the quality and efficiency of IRB review at 10 VA Medical Centers. In addition to serving for 4 years on the VAPHS Institutional Review Board (IRB), he served as a member of the Ethics Committee of the Association of Academic Surgery. These research foci target two of the most critical practices through which ethical principles are brought to bear on the VA’s dual mission to provide patient-centered clinical care and advance Veteran-centered research. He also teaches ethics to medical students and residents throughout the VAPHS and University of Pittsburgh, where he mentors medical student scholarly projects and serves as the faculty mentor for a the mini-elective course, Compassion in Medicine.

Research Areas

  • Decision Making and Preoperative Care