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Steven Q. Simpson, M.D., Professor of Medicine

Steven Simpson portrait
Professor, Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine

Professional Background

Dr. Simpson is a 1983 graduate of the University of Kansas School of Medicine. He completed residency training at KU and fellowship training in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at Rush University, Chicago. His professional experience includes faculty appointments at Rush, the University of New Mexico, and the University of Kansas (since 1998). He has been Director of Critical Care at the Albuquerque Federal Regional Medical Center, as well as Fellowship Director and Interim Division Chief of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at KU, Director of the Medical Intensive Care Units, and Chair of Multidisciplinary Critical Care at the University of Kansas Health System. Dr. Simpson was the President of the American College of Chest Physicians (CHEST) for 2020-2021. He served as a Senior Medical Advisor to the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority of the US Department of Health and Human Services from 2018 - 2022. He serves as an expert panelist for the NIH (NIAID) COVID-19 Treatment Guidelines and co-authors the Surviving Sepsis Campaign Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Treatment of Sepsis and Septic Shock. On 1/1/23 he was elected Chair of the Board of Directors of Sepsis Alliance.

Education and Training
  • MD, Univ. of Kansas
  • BS, Biology, Baker University
  • Internship, Internal Medicine, University of Kansas, Kansas City, KS
  • Residency, Internal Medicine, University of Kansas, Kansas City, KS
  • Clinical Fellowship, Pulmonary Medicine, Rush Medical College, Chicago, IL
Licensure, Accreditations & Certifications
  • Doctor of Medicine, Kansas Board of Healing Arts
Professional Affiliations
  • Sepsis Alliance, Sepsis Alliance, Chair, 2023 - Present
  • American College of Chest Physicians, CHEST, President Elect, 2020 - 2022
  • American College of Chest Physicians, CHEST, President, 2020 - 2022
  • American College of Chest Physicians, CHEST, Chair, 2020 - 2022
  • National Institutes of Health, NIH COVID-19 Treatment Guidelines Panel, Ad-Hoc Member, 2020 - Present
  • University of Kansas Health System, TUKHS Triage Committee, Co-Chair, 2020 - Present
  • Sepsis Alliance, Sepsis Alliance, Director, 2014 - 2019



My research interests are in the area of critical care medicine, specifically sepsis, acute lung injury, and management of shock. Previous work centered on cellular mechanisms of sepsis and septic shock, along with trials of pharmaceutical agents in the treatment of sepsis. For the past decade and a half, I have studied and carried out quality improvement training in the realm of sepsis resuscitation and care. Our group is currently using machine learning to inform decision making for antibiotic and fluid administration for septic shock, as well as using more classical epidemiological techniques to determine factors predictive of progression from infection to septic shock. We are currently collaborating with University of Iowa investigators to identify the top performing hospitals in the nation with respect to sepsis care, clarify the components of quality improvement that allow them to consistently perform well, and develop training and implementation materials that can be scaled across the nation. Additionally, we are collaborating with Yale investigators to identify root causes of minority sepsis patients receiving lower quality sepsis care (which is documented by other groups) and to intervene, such that these patients can receive equitable care.