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Virtual Grand Rounds
William C. Cushman, M.D.
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Dr. Cushman is Medical Director, Department of Preventive Medicine, and Professor of Preventive Medicine, Medicine, and Physiology at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) in Memphis, Tennessee. He was on the Executive Committee for the Seventh (2003) Joint National Committee Report on Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of Hypertension (JNC 7) and a co-author of the 2014 Evidence-Based Guideline for the Management of High Blood Pressure in Adults: Report from the Panel Members Appointed to the Eighth Joint National Committee (JNC 8), on the 2004 Department of Veteran Affairs (VA)/Department of Defense (VA/DoD) Hypertension Clinical Practice Guideline committee and was the VA Champion for the 2014 and 2020 (co-champion) VA/DoD Hypertension Guidelines.

Dr. Cushman graduated magna cum laude from the University of Mississippi School of Medicine, where he was also selected in his third year to Alpha Omega Alpha honorary society. He completed his residency training at the University of Mississippi in Jackson, Mississippi, and served on the faculty and at the Jackson VA Medical Center from 1977-1988, when he moved to the University of Tennessee in Memphis, where he rose to the rank of Professor, and the Memphis VA Medical Center, until he retired from the VA in 2020.

Among his awards, Dr. Cushman received the 2005 Excellence in Leadership Award, Consortium for Southeastern Hypertension Control (COSEHC); the 2010 (inaugural) Barnwell Award for outstanding achievement in clinical science, the Department of Veterans Affairs Clinical Science Research and Development’s (CSR&D) highest honor for scientific achievement; the 2017 Inter-American Society of Hypertension Lifetime Achievement Award; and the American Heart Association’s Council on Hypertension 2018 Irvine Page-Alva Bradley Lifetime Achievement Award.

He has been an investigator in many clinical trials relating to hypertension, lipid therapy, and diabetes. He has been the chairman for three VA Cooperative Studies: 1) PATHS (Prevention and Treatment of Hypertension Study), a multicenter clinical trial examining the effects of reducing alcohol intake on blood pressure in heavy drinkers, 2) the VA participation in the Antihypertensive and Lipid Lowering Treatment to Prevent Heart Attack Trial (ALLHAT), a National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) study comparing cardiovascular events from four major classes of antihypertensive agents, and 3) Co-Chair for The Diuretic Comparison Project, a randomized VA Cooperative Study comparing the effects of chlorthalidone vs hydrochlorothiazide on major cardiovascular events. He was also Principal Investigator for the VA Clinical Center Network and Chair of the Blood Pressure Working Group of the NHLBI-sponsored Action to Control Cardiovascular Risk in Diabetes (ACCORD) trial (2000-2010) and ACCORDION (-2015) extension, and Principal Investigator for the VA Clinical Center Network and Chair of the Intervention Subcommittee of the NHLBI-sponsored Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention Trial (SPRINT) (2009-2018). He has over 300 journal article and book chapter publications, including a number of publications in NEJM, JAMA, and Lancet, and has received more than $60 million in research funding.
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