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Mary Berlik Rice

Mary Berlik Rice Mary Berlik Rice  M.D.
Instructor in Medicine
Harvard Medical School
Person Type: 


What does working with the Center mean to you?

The Center has been a source of inspiration and collaboration since I was first introduced to Eric Chivian and the late Paul Epstein as a Harvard medical student. Through collaborative work with Center staff, I have co-authored educational environmental health briefing books for political campaigns and elected officials, wrote the policy report, "Healthy Solutions for the Low Carbon Economy" with Paul Epstein and Archie Kasnet, and most recently published "Lungs in a Warming World: Climate Change and Respiratory Health," in the journal Chest, with Aaron Bernstein. As a junior investigator in the fields of air pollution, climate change, and respiratory health, the Center is an important source of expertise and multi-disciplinary collaboration. It is an honor to serve on the faculty committee of the Center.



Mary Rice is a pulmonary and critical care physician with a research focus on air pollution, climate change, and respiratory health.

She has been involved in research and education relating to health and the environment for more than 10 years. Prior to medical school, she pursued research and public policy analysis at the Columbia Center for Children’s Environmental Health, studying urban air pollution, pesticide exposure, and cognitive and pulmonary outcomes in a large birth cohort. As a medical student at Harvard, she led the non-profit Students for Environmental Awareness in Medicine, during which she organized a medical student conference on health and the environment in Washington, DC, and organized a community-based participatory research project on asthma and environmental exposures in the low-income community of Dorchester, MA.

She first became involved with the Center for Health and the Global Environment while at Harvard Medical School, and has co-authored a variety of policy reports and editorials with Center staff that review the health implications of climate change and other environmental problems. This includes Dr. Paul Epstein’s report “Healthy Solutions for the Low Carbon Economy,” which examined the health implications of approaches to mitigate climate change and “Lungs in a warming world: climate change and respiratory health” with Dr. Aaron Bernstein. Dr. Rice is an instructor in medicine at Harvard Medical School with a primary appointment at Massachusetts General Hospital.  In addition to patient care, she works under the mentorship of Dr. Murray Mittleman and Dr. Diane Gold at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health to study pulmonary health effects of air pollution in the Framingham Heart Study, a large cohort of adults, and Project Viva, a pediatric cohort in the Boston area.