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Allen Chen

Dr. ALLEN CHEN obtained his MD and PhD in tumor immunology from Duke University in 1986 and moved to Seattle for pediatric residency and hematology/oncology fellowship at the University of Washington affiliated hospitals and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Dr. Chen was recruited to Johns Hopkins to lead the pediatric bone marrow transplantation (BMT) program. Here, he completed his MHS in clinical investigation at the Bloomberg School of Public Health to develop clinical translational research skills, and in the process was grounded in the science of safety.

His clinical focus is in bone marrow transplantation, with the fascinating interplay of chemoradiotherapy that can exceed a lethal marrow dose; donor and recipient immune systems that may reject each other or cooperate to protect the recipient and provide an anti-tumor effect; and stem cells that can last a lifetime and differentiate into a full spectrum of cell types. He has led clinical trials both to induce the patient’s own cryopreserved marrow to attack tumor cells and to prevent donor marrow grafts from attacking patient tissues.

Because he cares for this most complex and vulnerable patient population, Chen is deeply aware of the need to develop better systems to deliver safe care. Before medical school, he worked as a programmer-analyst in the Laboratory of Computer Science at Massachusetts General Hospital, and he has been involved in the selection and deployment of clinical systems since joining the faculty at Johns Hopkins. He demonstrated a 40% reduction in reported medication-related events with deployment of computerized order entry in pediatric oncology. He continues to study issues ranging from patient identification to medication reconciliation, to improve the safe delivery of care throughout the Johns Hopkins Health System and beyond.