Clinical Focus

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Machine Learning
  • Population Health
  • Epidemiology
  • Network Science

Academic Appointments

Boards, Advisory Committees, Professional Organizations

  • Member, Society of Academic Emergency Medicine (2016 - Present)
  • Member, American College of Emergency Physicians (2016 - Present)

Professional Education

  • Residency: Stanford University Emergency Medicine Residency (2020) CA
  • Medical Education: Harvard Medical School (2016) MA
  • MD, Harvard Medical School (2016)
  • PhD, Harvard Graduate School of Arts & Sciences (2015)
  • BSc, University of Toronto (2007)


All Publications

  • Social Determinants of Hallway Bed Use. The western journal of emergency medicine Kim, D. A., Sanchez, L. D., Chiu, D., Brown, I. P. 2020; 21 (4): 949–58


    INTRODUCTION: Hallway beds in the emergency department (ED) produce lower patient satisfaction and inferior care. We sought to determine whether socioeconomic factors influence which visits are assigned to hallway beds, independent of clinical characteristics at triage.METHODS: We studied 332,919 visits, across 189,326 patients, to two academic EDs from 2013-2016. We estimated a logistic model of hallway bed assignment, conditioning on payor, demographics, triage acuity, chief complaint, patient visit frequency, and ED volume. Because payor is not generally known at the time of triage, we interpreted it as a proxy for other observable characteristics that may influence bed assignment. We estimated a Cox proportional hazards model of hallway bed assignment on length of stay.RESULTS: Median patient age was 53. 54.0% of visits were by women. 42.1% of visits were paid primarily by private payors, 37.1% by Medicare, and 20.7% by Medicaid. A total of 16.2% of visits were assigned to hallway beds. Hallway bed assignment was more likely for frequent ED visitors, for lower acuity presentations, and for psychiatric, substance use, and musculoskeletal chief complaints, which were more common among visits paid primarily by Medicaid. In a logistic model controlling for these factors, as well as for other patient demographics and for the volume of recent ED arrivals, Medicaid status was nevertheless associated with 22% greater odds of assignment to a hallway bed (odds ratio 1.22, [95% confidence interval, CI, 1.18-1.26]), compared to private insurance. Visits assigned to hallway beds had longer lengths of stay than roomed visits of comparable acuity (hazard ratio for departure 0.91 [95% CI, 0.90-0.92]).CONCLUSION: We find evidence of social determinants of hallway bed use, likely involving epidemiologic, clinical, and operational factors. Even after accounting for different distributions of chief complaints and for more frequent ED use by the Medicaid population, as well as for other visit characteristics known at the time of triage, visits paid primarily by Medicaid retain a disproportionate association with hallway bed assignment. Further research is needed to eliminate potential bias in the use of hallway beds. [West J Emerg Med. 2020;21(4)949-958.].

    View details for DOI 10.5811/westjem.2020.4.45976

    View details for PubMedID 32726269

  • Rates of Co-infection Between SARS-CoV-2 and Other Respiratory Pathogens. JAMA Kim, D., Quinn, J., Pinsky, B., Shah, N. H., Brown, I. 2020

    View details for DOI 10.1001/jama.2020.6266

    View details for PubMedID 32293646

  • An Interpretable Deep Learning Model for the Prevention of Self-Harm and Suicide Kim, D., Cogill, S., Yang, S. MOSBY-ELSEVIER. 2019: S6
  • A simple decision rule predicts futile resuscitation of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. Resuscitation Glober, N. K., Tainter, C. R., Abramson, T. M., Staats, K., Gilbert, G., Kim, D. 2019


    Resuscitation of cardiac arrest involves invasive and traumatic interventions and places a large burden on limited EMS resources. Our aim was to identify prehospital cardiac arrests for which resuscitation is extremely unlikely to result in survival to hospital discharge.We performed a retrospective cohort analysis of all cardiac arrests in San Mateo County, California, for which paramedics were dispatched, from January 1, 2015 to December 31, 2018, using the Cardiac Arrest Registry to Enhance Survival (CARES) database. We described characteristics of patients, arrests, and EMS responses, and used recursive partitioning to develop decision rules to identify arrests unlikely to survive to hospital discharge, or to survive with good neurologic function.From 2015-2018, 1750 patients received EMS dispatch for cardiac arrest in San Mateo County. We excluded 44 patients for whom resuscitation was terminated due to DNR directives. Median age was 69 years (IQR 57 - 81), 563 (33.0%) patients were female, 816 (47.8%) had witnessed arrests, 651 (38.2%) received bystander CPR, 421 (24.7%) had an initial shockable rhythm, and 1178 (69.1%) arrested at home. A simple rule (non-shockable initial rhythm, unwitnessed arrest, and age 80 or greater) excludes 223 (13.1%) arrests, of whom none survived to hospital discharge.A simple decision rule (non-shockable rhythm, unwitnessed arrest, age ≥ 80) identifies arrests for which resuscitation is futile. If validated, this rule could be applied by EMS policymakers to identify cardiac arrests for which the trauma and expense of resuscitation are extremely unlikely to result in survival.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.resuscitation.2019.06.011

    View details for PubMedID 31228547

  • Reply to "the futility of resuscitating an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest cannot be summarized by three simple criteria." Resuscitation Glober, N. K., Tainter, C. R., Kim, D. 2019
  • Predicting First Episodes of Non-Accidental Trauma With Machine Learning Kim, D., Cogill, S., Yang, S. MOSBY-ELSEVIER. 2018: S145
  • Exposure, hazard, and survival analysis of diffusion on social networks STATISTICS IN MEDICINE Wu, J., Crawford, F. W., Kim, D. A., Stafford, D., Christakis, N. A. 2018; 37 (17): 2561–85


    Sociologists, economists, epidemiologists, and others recognize the importance of social networks in the diffusion of ideas and behaviors through human societies. To measure the flow of information on real-world networks, researchers often conduct comprehensive sociometric mapping of social links between individuals and then follow the spread of an "innovation" from reports of adoption or change in behavior over time. The innovation is introduced to a small number of individuals who may also be encouraged to spread it to their network contacts. In conjunction with the known social network, the pattern of adoptions gives researchers insight into the spread of the innovation in the population and factors associated with successful diffusion. Researchers have used widely varying statistical tools to estimate these quantities, and there is disagreement about how to analyze diffusion on fully observed networks. Here, we describe a framework for measuring features of diffusion processes on social networks using the epidemiological concepts of exposure and competing risks. Given a realization of a diffusion process on a fully observed network, we show that classical survival regression models can be adapted to estimate the rate of diffusion, and actor/edge attributes associated with successful transmission or adoption, while accounting for the topology of the social network. We illustrate these tools by applying them to a randomized network intervention trial conducted in Honduras to estimate the rate of adoption of 2 health-related interventions-multivitamins and chlorine bleach for water purification-and determine factors associated with successful social transmission.

    View details for PubMedID 29707798

  • Social connectedness is associated with fibrinogen level in a human social network PROCEEDINGS OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY B-BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES Kim, D. A., Benjamin, E. J., Fowler, J. H., Christakis, N. A. 2016; 283 (1837)


    Socially isolated individuals face elevated rates of illness and death. Conventional measures of social connectedness reflect an individual's perceived network and can be subject to bias and variation in reporting. In this study of a large human social network, we find that greater indegree, a sociocentric measure of friendship and familial ties identified by a subject's social connections rather than by the subject, predicts significantly lower concentrations of fibrinogen (a biomarker of inflammation and cardiac risk), after adjusting for demographics, education, medical history and known predictors of cardiac risk. The association between fibrinogen and social isolation, as measured by low indegree, is comparable to the effect of smoking, and greater than that of low education, a conventional measure of socioeconomic disadvantage. By contrast, outdegree, which reflects an individual's perceived connectedness, displays a significantly weaker association with fibrinogen concentrations.

    View details for DOI 10.1098/rspb.2016.0958

    View details for PubMedID 27559060

  • Social network targeting to maximise population behaviour change: a cluster randomised controlled trial. Lancet (London, England) Kim, D. A., Hwong, A. R., Stafford, D., Hughes, D. A., O'Malley, A. J., Fowler, J. H., Christakis, N. A. 2015; 386 (9989): 145–53


    Information and behaviour can spread through interpersonal ties. By targeting influential individuals, health interventions that harness the distributive properties of social networks could be made more effective and efficient than those that do not. Our aim was to assess which targeting methods produce the greatest cascades or spillover effects and hence maximise population-level behaviour change.In this cluster randomised trial, participants were recruited from villages of the Department of Lempira, Honduras. We blocked villages on the basis of network size, socioeconomic status, and baseline rates of water purification, for delivery of two public health interventions: chlorine for water purification and multivitamins for micronutrient deficiencies. We then randomised villages, separately for each intervention, to one of three targeting methods, introducing the interventions to 5% samples composed of either: randomly selected villagers (n=9 villages for each intervention); villagers with the most social ties (n=9); or nominated friends of random villagers (n=9; the last strategy exploiting the so-called friendship paradox of social networks). Participants and data collectors were not aware of the targeting methods. Primary endpoints were the proportions of available products redeemed by the entire population under each targeting method. This trial is registered with, number NCT01672580.Between Aug 4, and Aug 14, 2012, 32 villages in rural Honduras (25-541 participants each; total study population of 5773) received public health interventions. For each intervention, nine villages (each with 1-20 initial target individuals) were randomised, using a blocked design, to each of the three targeting methods. In nomination-targeted villages, 951 (74·3%) of 1280 available multivitamin tickets were redeemed compared with 940 (66·2%) of 1420 in randomly targeted villages and 744 (61·0%) of 1220 in indegree-targeted villages. All pairwise differences in redemption rates were significant (p<0·01) after correction for multiple comparisons. Targeting nominated friends increased adoption of the nutritional intervention by 12·2% compared with random targeting (95% CI 6·9-17·9). Targeting the most highly connected individuals, by contrast, produced no greater adoption of either intervention, compared with random targeting.Introduction of a health intervention to the nominated friends of random individuals can enhance that intervention's diffusion by exploiting intrinsic properties of human social networks. This method has the additional advantage of scalability because it can be implemented without mapping the network. Deployment of certain types of health interventions via network targeting, without increasing the number of individuals targeted or the resources used, could enhance the adoption and efficiency of those interventions, thereby improving population health.National Institutes of Health, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Star Family Foundation, and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/S0140-6736(15)60095-2

    View details for PubMedID 25952354

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4638320

  • In Bad Taste: Evidence for the Oral Origins of Moral Disgust SCIENCE Chapman, H. A., Kim, D. A., Susskind, J. M., Anderson, A. K. 2009; 323 (5918): 1222–26


    In common parlance, moral transgressions "leave a bad taste in the mouth." This metaphor implies a link between moral disgust and more primitive forms of disgust related to toxicity and disease, yet convincing evidence for this relationship is still lacking. We tested directly the primitive oral origins of moral disgust by searching for similarity in the facial motor activity evoked by gustatory distaste (elicited by unpleasant tastes), basic disgust (elicited by photographs of contaminants), and moral disgust (elicited by unfair treatment in an economic game). We found that all three states evoked activation of the levator labii muscle region of the face, characteristic of an oralnasal rejection response. These results suggest that immorality elicits the same disgust as disease vectors and bad tastes.

    View details for DOI 10.1126/science.1165565

    View details for Web of Science ID 000263687600041

    View details for PubMedID 19251631

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