Dr. Denise Howard, a leading obstetrician and gynecologist who specializes in gynecologic surgery and women’s reproductive health, has been appointed chief of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital, effective May 1. She is also an assistant professor of clinical obstetrics and gynecology and vice chair in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Weill Cornell Medicine.
In her new role, Dr. Howard will enhance Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital’s full spectrum of world-class women’s health services in Brooklyn, providing patients with convenient access to exceptional care and leading specialists right in their community. The Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology offers comprehensive health care services across a woman’s lifetime including prenatal and postpartum childbirth services, family planning and cancer screenings, and treats disorders of the female reproductive system, such as cervical and endometrial cancers, abnormal uterine bleeding, fibroids and urinary incontinence and pelvic floor conditions. NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital delivers about 5,000 babies annually and offers an active midwifery program.
Dr. Howard was previously chief of gynecology at Geisinger Health System and assistant professor of clinical obstetrics and gynecology at the Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine in Danville, Penn.
“Dr. Howard is an accomplished leader in women’s health with a wealth of experience in this field,” said Dr. Laura Riley, chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Weill Cornell Medicine and obstetrician and gynecologist-in-chief at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center. “With a proven commitment to her patients and to trainees, she is the ideal choice for the position, and I look forward to working with her as we continue to provide comprehensive women’s health care services in Brooklyn.”
“We are delighted to welcome Dr. Howard to lead obstetrics and gynecologic care,” said Robert Guimento, president of NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital. “Dr. Howard’s dedication to providing access to the very best health care throughout a woman’s life will be an invaluable asset to the hospital and the Brooklyn community.”
“I’m honored to join NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital and Weill Cornell Medicine,” Dr. Howard said. “I look forward to serving the community and providing high-quality care so all patients feel their needs have been met, no matter their race, religion, ethnicity, socioeconomic background or orientation. I also look forward to supporting our residency program so that our graduates receive comprehensive clinical training.”
As chief of obstetrics and gynecology, Dr. Howard will focus on delivering care that is accessible, safe, efficient, effective, patient-centered, timely and equitable. This will be achieved by making sure that appropriate processes are in place to minimize adverse events; the care provided is evidence-based; and measures are implemented to enhance the patient experience. Dr. Howard will also maintain alignment between the department’s OB-GYN services and those offered throughout NewYork-Presbyterian’s health care system and Weill Cornell Medicine. Dr. Howard plans to continue to build upon the diversity of providers at the hospital, reflecting the community’s rich diversity.
Dr. Howard engages in clinical research, with a previous focus on pelvic floor problems arising from childbirth, and most recently, cervical cancer prevention. “We have many tools to eliminate cervical cancer, including screening and the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, but our progress against the disease has slowed as too many patients don’t receive the proper screening or follow-up care,” she said. “We need to address the issues preventing all women from accessing preventive services and make cervical cancer a never-event.”
Dr. Howard’s new role marks her return to the Weill Cornell Medicine community; from 2015 to 2019 she served as an assistant professor of clinical obstetrics and gynecology at Weill Cornell Medicine-Qatar, a location of Weill Cornell Medicine in the Middle East and the first American medical school established outside the United States. A joint venture between Cornell University and Qatar Foundation, Weill Cornell Medicine-Qatar provides patient care and medical education, as well as conducts biomedical research. Dr. Howard was also a senior attending physician at Sidra Medicine, Qatar Foundation’s teaching hospital and research center specializing in women’s and children’s health.