Dr. Gassert is board certified in both Preventive Occupational Medicine and Internal Medicine, and was an Occupational (Industrial) Hygienist prior to medical training. He was previously an Instructor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and has been an instructor and visiting scientist at the Environmental & Occupational Medicine and epidemiology program at the Harvard School of Public Health since 1997.
He is also an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and Boston University School of Medicine. He served three years as President of the New England College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, a component of the American College of occupational and Environmental Medicine. His main interest is education in occupational and environmental health (OEH).
Dr. Gassert’s work experience includes management of worker compensation injuries and illnesses, medical surveillance programs, disability case management, work-site investigations, medical-legal case investigations, and expert witness representation in legal cases. His patients and clients over the years have included heavy and light manufacturing industries, high tech, biomedical R&D, pharmaceuticals, service industries, hospitals and nursing homes, schools, public employees, defense contractors, and the University of Massachusetts Medical Center and Medical School biological research laboratories. He has served on three Institutional Biosafety Committees in public and private research institutions, including the University of Massachusetts Medical School, Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research, and Novartis Vaccines & Diagnostics. As Chief Medical Officer for Quadrant Health Strategies Inc. for six years until 2012, he was responsible for directing and overseeing medical services at client companies in the biotechnology sector in several states.
Medical surveillance work has included firefighters in Massachusetts and New Hampshire, environmental protection workers in Maine, and pharmaceutical research scientists. He consulted on construction work illness and hazard exposures on the Central Artery / Tunnel “Big Dig” Project in Boston for several years. In the 1980s, he authored a book on health hazards in electronics manufacturing while working in Asia as a co-founder/director of a regional non-governmental organization. He has published on the long-term outcomes of occupational asthma and on toxicological aspects of the gassing incident at Bhopal, India, the world’s worst industrial disaster. In 2005, he assisted CNN with filming on environmental health and toxicology related issues in New Orleans two weeks after Hurricane Katrina. He received a master’s degree in occupational (industrial) hygiene from the University of London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and a medical degree from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (now Rutgers University) – New Jersey Medical School. He completed residencies and fellowships in internal medicine at Johns Hopkins University and in occupational and environmental medicine at Harvard School of Public Health where he served also as chief resident and still teaches in the MPH and continuing education programs. He is an active member of the Occupational & Environmental Medicine Residency Advisory Committee at the Harvard School of Public Health.
In Asia and Africa, Dr. Gassert has consulted and worked with labor and non-governmental organizations, and has presented at OEH conferences. He has helped to train professionals in occupational and environmental medicine in the Asia region (Thailand, China, Vietnam). His current interests also include pro bono editorial support for Hesperian Health Guides (Berkeley, California) on a workers’ OEH guide book, support for miner pneumoconiosis compensation in South Africa, efforts to support reversal of climate change, and as a member of the international advisory board the Asian Network for the Rights of Occupational & Environmental Victims, a network of organizations devoted to worker and environmental protection, he has provided consultation on toxic exposures and has co-led development of OEH training of medical professionals in Asia-Pacific region.
Thomas H Gassert, MD, MSc
- Visiting Scientist and Medical Residency Advisory Committee Ombudsman
- Environmental and Occupational Medicine and Epidemiology Program
- Harvard School of Public Health
- Assistant Professor of Medicine
- University of Massachusetts Medical School
- Boston University School of Medicine