Louis Rice, M.D., a specialist in infectious disease, has been appointed chair of the Department of Medicine at The Warren Alpert Medical School and chief of medicine at Rhode Island and The Miriam hospitals. Rice’s research includes developing antibiotic usage strategies to minimize resistance.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — Louis B. Rice, M.D., has been appointed chair of the Department of Medicine at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and chief of medicine at Rhode Island Hospital and The Miriam Hospital, effective Sept. 7, 2010.

As chair of medicine he will serve the needs of Lifespan and the Alpert Medical School and also be the executive chair of medicine at Memorial Hospital of Rhode Island, the Providence V.A. Medical Center, and Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island. As chief of medicine for Lifespan, Rice will be responsible for managing clinical services, educational and research activities, and administration for the Department of Medicine.

“I am thrilled with the appointment of Lou Rice. He is a seasoned researcher, clinician and educator. His appointment is another important step in raising the profiles of the hospitals and the medical school nationally,” said Edward J. Wing, M.D., dean of medicine and biological sciences at The Warren Alpert Medical School. “His reputation and experience as an expert researcher in infectious diseases, combined with his work with the National Institutes of Health, make him a tremendous asset to our students and faculty.”

“Dr. Rice is recognized worldwide for his research in antimicrobial resistance, and this research, coupled with his outstanding track record and reputation in both teaching and patient care, are sure to help us solidify our standing among top-tiered academic medical centers nationwide,” said Timothy J. Babineau, M.D., president and chief executive officer of Rhode Island Hospital and The Miriam Hospital. “Dr. Rice is uniquely qualified to lead the Department of Medicine into the future and further our mission of both superb patient care and academic excellence.”

Rice comes to Rhode Island from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, where he serves as professor of medicine and chief of medical service at the Cleveland V.A. Medical Center, as well as vice chairman of the Department of Medicine at the University Hospitals of Cleveland. He is a member of the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) and incoming editor-in-chief of the ASM journal Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy; a member of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, where he currently chairs the research committee and the research on resistance working group; and a fellow of the American College of Physicians. He served as  chair of the National Institutes of Health study section on drug discovery and mechanisms of antimicrobial resistance and for 10 years was associate editor of Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy.

Rice will also become president of University Medicine Inc., a nonprofit academic multispecialty medical group with practices in Providence and surrounding communities.

Rice received his undergraduate degree from Harvard University and his medical degree from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. He completed his internship and residency in medicine at New York University Medical Center and clinical and research fellowships in infectious diseases at Harvard Medical School and what is now Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

His research interests include understanding the mechanisms of antibiotic resistance in bacteria; preventing hospital infections; and developing antibiotic usage strategies that will minimize the emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance.

Rhode Island Hospital

Founded in 1863, Rhode Island Hospital (www.rhodeislandhospital.org) is a private, 719-bed not-for-profit hospital, the largest teaching hospital of The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and a major trauma center for southeastern New England. Along with its pediatric division, Hasbro Children’s Hospital, it is dedicated to being on the cutting edge of medicine and research and ranks among the country’s leading independent hospitals that receive funding from the National Institutes of Health.

The Miriam Hospital

The Miriam Hospital, established in 1926 in Providence, R.I., is a private not-for-profit hospital affiliated with The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and a founding member of the Lifespan health system. For more information about The Miriam Hospital, please visit www.miriamhospital.org.

Alpert Medical School

The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University is Rhode Island’s only school of medicine. Since granting its first M.D. degrees in 1975, Alpert Medical School has become a national leader in medical education and biomedical research.