About the Author

About the Author

A native of Newport, Rhode Island, Jim O’Connell graduated from the University
of Notre Dame in 1970 and received a master’s degree in theology
from Cambridge University in 1972. After earning an M.D. from Harvard
Medical School in 1982, he completed a residency in Internal Medicine at
Massachusetts General Hospital. O’Connell began full-time clinical work
with homeless individuals as a founding physician of the Boston Health
Care for the Homeless Program in 1985.

Under his leadership, BHCHP has grown to be a vital and dynamic
presence in the continuum of care for poor and marginalized populations
in Boston and has pioneered many innovations, including the nation’s first
medical respite program in 1985, the transition to funding as a federally
qualified health center in 1988, and implementation of the first electronic
medical record for a health care for the homeless program in collaboration
with the Laboratory of Computer Science of MGH in 1996. Dr. O’Connell
shares a particular passion for the care of “rough sleepers,” and street medicine
has been integral to BHCHP’s model of care since 1985. He currently
juggles a busy clinical role on the program’s street team with his duties as
President of BHCHP.

The recipient of many prizes and awards, including the Albert
Schweitzer Humanitarian Award in 2012 and The Trustees’ Medal at the
bicentennial celebration of MGH in 2011, Dr. O’Connell is Assistant Professor
of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He has lectured internationally,
and his research has been published in a broad array of journals. He lives
with his family in Charlestown, Massachusetts. This is his first book.