James Courtney Fackler, M.D.

Headshot of James Courtney Fackler
  • Professor of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine


Anesthesiology, Critical Care Medicine

Research Interests

Team Performance Optimization; Machine and Reinforcement Learning in Critical Care ...read more

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Outside of Maryland & Washington D.C.

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The Johns Hopkins Hospital (Main Entrance)

Appointment Phone: 410-955-2393
1800 Orleans St.
The Charlotte R. Bloomberg Children's Center Building, Suite 6336
Baltimore, MD 21287
Phone: 410-955-7237 | Fax: 410-614-2911
The Johns Hopkins Hospital (Main Entrance) - Google Maps


Dr. James Fackler is a professor of anesthesiology and critical care medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. His areas of clinical expertise include acute respiratory distress syndrome, novel respiratory therapies, and critical care informatics.

Dr. Fackler received his undergraduate degree in biology from the University of Illinois and earned his M.D. from Rush Medical College in Chicago. He completed his residencies in pediatrics and anesthesiology and then fellowships in pediatric intensive care and pediatric anesthesia at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. His first faculty position was at the Children's Hospital in Boston where he was an early leader in use of the internet for health data exchange and critical care monitoring.

Dr. Fackler returned to the Johns Hopkins faculty in 1996 to run the Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation program and Respiratory Therapy.

He took a "sabbatical" from 2002 to 2006 and worked for the Cerner Corporation developing their critical care and device integration solutions.  He has founded three health care informatics-based startups and consults for other device and information integration companies.

Dr. Fackler's research interests include optimizing team performance in pediatric critical care.  He has mentored pediatric residents, critical care fellows, and biomedical engineering undergrads, Masters and PhD students.  His current major focus is on sepsis.

He serves as an associate editor for Pediatric Critical Care Medicine and as an ad hoc journal reviewer for many notable publications including New England Journal of Medicine and Critical Care Medicine. He is a member of American Association of Artificial Intelligence, American Medical Informatics Association and the Society for Critical Care Medicine.  He helped found, and is on the Board of the non-profit, Machine Learning for Healthcare.

Dr. Fackler is a frequent lecturer and panelist on the subject of critical care informatics. He is an expert in data integration and its use.

...read more


  • Professor of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine

Departments / Divisions

Centers & Institutes



  • MD; Rush Presbyterian University Medical College (1980)


  • Pediatrics; Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (1983)
  • Anesthesiology; Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (1986)

Board Certifications

  • American Board of Anesthesiology (Anesthesiology) (1991)
  • American Board of Pediatrics (Pediatric Critical Care Medicine) (1992)
  • American Board of Pediatrics (Pediatrics) (1986)

Research & Publications

Research Summary

Dr. Fackler is interested in data acquisition and data mining in the operating room and intensive care unit. In the ICU, each patient has 300–350 associated data elements. Blood pressure, heart rate, potassium concentration and hemoglobin level are just a few examples. Studies have shown that the human brain can comprehend seven individual parcels of data at once. If the data can be sorted into patterns, an individual may be able to manage seven individual patterns. Dr. Fackler hopes to identify patterns among the patient data and establish recognizable trends that occur over time. The understanding of such patterns and trends could help clinical professionals to make more educated, evidence-based decisions on patient care.

Clinical Trials


Selected Publications

Woods-Hill C, Fackler J*, Nelson McMillan K, Ascenzi J, Martinez D, Toerper M, Voskertchian A, Colantuoni E, Klaus S, Levin S, Aaron Milstone. Association of a clinical practice guideline with blood culture use in critically ill children. JAMA Pediatr. 2017;171(2):157-64.

Liu R, Greenstein JL, Granite SJ, Fackler JC, Bembea MM, Sarma SV, Winslow RL. Data-driven discovery of a novel sepsis pre-shock state predicts impending septic shock in the ICU. Sci Rep 2019;9(1):6145.

Woods-Hill CZ, Koontz DW, Voskertchian A, Xie A, Shay J, Miller MR, Fackler JC, Milstone AM, and the BrightStar Authorship group. Consensus recommendations for blood culture use in critically ill children: a modified Delphi approach. Pediatr Crit Care Med. 2021 Sep 1;v22(9):774-784. doi: 10.1097/PCC.0000000000002749. PMID: 33899804; PMCID: PMC8416691.

Liu R, Greenstein JL, Granite SJ, Fackler JC, Bembea MM, Sarma SV, Winslow RL.  Spectral Clustering of Risk Score Trajectories Stratifies Sepsis Patients by Clinical Outcome and Interventions Received. eLife.  2020;9:e58142 DOI: 10.7554/eLife.58142

Liu R, Greenstein JL, Fackler JC, Bergmann J, Bembea MM, Winslow RL. Prediction of impending septic shock in children with sepsis. Crit Care Explor. 2021 Jun 15;3(6):e0442.

Activities & Honors


  • Alpha Omega Alpha, Rush Medical College, 1979


  • American Academy of Pediatrics, 1988 - 1997
  • American Association of Artificial Intelligence, 1994
  • American Medical Association, 1988 - 1993
  • American Medical Informatics Association, 1992
  • American Society of Anesthesiologists, 1984 - 1993
  • American Telemedicine Association, 2010
  • American Thoracic Society, 1995 - 2002
  • Association of University Anesthesiologists, 2004
  • Committee on Information Technologies, 1993 - 1996
  • Electronic Communication Committee, 1998 - 2002
  • Extracorporeal Life Support Organization, 1988 - 2002
  • Industry Partner, Coalition for Critical Care Excellence, 2003 - 2005
  • Massachusetts Medical Society, 1988 - 1996
  • Massachusetts Society of Anesthesiologists, 1988 - 1993
  • Member Steering Committee, 1994 - 1997
  • Society for Critical Care Medicine, 1985
  • Suffolk District Medical Society, 1988 - 1996

Professional Activities

  • Ad hoc reviewer, New England Journal of Medicine
  • Ad hoc reviewer, Critical Care Medicine
  • Ad hoc reviewer, Intensive Care Medicine
  • Ad hoc reviewer, Chest
  • Ad hoc reviewer, International Journal of Medical Informatics
  • Ad hoc reviewer, Transactions on Modeling and Computer Simulation
  • Chairman, Protocols Committee, 1994 - 1997
  • Delegate, House of Delegates, 1994 - 1995
  • Editor, Pediatric Critical Care Medicine, 2001
  • Founder, Cardiopulmonary Corp, 2009
  • , Oak Clinical Informatics Systems, 2008
  • Vice Chairman, Electronic Communication Committee, 2001 - 2002
  • Vice Chairman, Electronic Communication Committee, 2000 - 2001
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