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Lawrence R. Wechsler, MD is the new chair of the Department of Neurology at Pennsylvania Hospital.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System has named Lawrence R. Wechsler as chair of the Department of Neurology at Pennsylvania Hospital.

Wechsler will supervise all inpatient and outpatient neurological services at the hospital, located in the Society Hill district of Center City. He will also serve as director of telemedicine and network development for the Neurology department, Penn Medicine News announced.

Wechsler’s interests center around acute stroke therapy, imaging, and telemedicine, Penn Medicine News reported. Over the course of his career, he has published over 180 peer-reviewed research publications, editorials, and reviews. He has also played a role in numerous national and international clinical trials, many of which have led to improved outcomes for stroke survivors. 

Along with Douglas Kondziolka of the New York University Langone School of Medicine, he helped lead the first clinical trials of cellular therapy for stroke treatments. 

He also developed and implemented a telemedicine program for acute stroke assessment, overseeing a telestroke network in western Pennsylvania that included 21 hospitals and provided over 2,013 stroke patients with outcomes similar to those expected for patients treated face-to-face.

Wechsler earned his bachelor’s degree from Harvard College and his medical degree from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.

He previously served as chair of the Department of Neurology and as Vice President for Telemedicine in the Physician Services Division at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Penn Medicine News reported. At UPMC, he also founded the UPMC Stroke Institute and served as its director for over 15 years. He also served as a professor of Neurology and Neurological Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. 

“With patient care at our core, coupled with Dr. Wechsler’s innovative research in Neurology and telemedicine, we’re excited for what his leadership will bring to Pennsylvania Hospital, and what it will mean for the patients we serve," Pennsylvania Hospital chief executive director of Theresa Laviree told Penn Medicine News. 

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