Joseph Shega, MD, is Senior Vice President and National Medical Director for VITAS Healthcare, the nation’s leading provider of end-of-life care. Dr. Shega is responsible for overseeing the regional medical directors as well as the director of physician services. For the past 15 years, Dr. Shega has devoted his career to improving the care of older adults at the end of life.
He joined VITAS in 2013 as a regional medical director. Prior to joining VITAS, he was an associate professor of medicine at the University of Chicago in the area of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine. In this role, he helped expand the palliative medicine program including accreditation of a fellowship program in hospice and palliative medicine, integration of palliative care into oncology, and further the understanding of pain assessment and management in persons with dementia.
In conjunction with his work at VITAS, Dr. Shega serves as the chair of the ethics committee for the American Geriatrics Society, co-managing editor of the Pain and Aging section for Pain Medicine, and is on the editorial board for the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management. He also serves on the Roundtable on Quality Care for People with Serious Illness through the National Academy of Medicine as well as a key contributor to the UNIPAC series through the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine including his current role as managing editor of the upcoming 5th edition.
Dr. Shega earned his bachelor’s degree from Lewis University in Romeoville and his medical education from Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago, both in Illinois. He completed a residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in Pennsylvania and a fellowship in Geriatric Medicine at the University of Chicago in Illinois.