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In Memoriam: Joseph J. Costa, UMSOM Adjunct Faculty Member and MD Class of '90 Graduate, who was Critical Care Chief at Mercy, Passes Away

July 27, 2020

Joseph J. Costa, MD

He Worked Tirelessly on the Front Lines During the Pandemic

The UMSOM Community joins our colleagues at Mercy Medical Center in mourning the passing of Joseph J. Costa, MD, an UMSOM Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine and graduate of the UMSOM Class of 1990.

Dr. Costa, who was Chief, Division of Critical Care at Mercy, was described as, “more than a trusted colleague, he was a true friend to many, who dedicated his life and career to caring for the sickest patients.”  Indeed, as the COVID-19 pandemic grew, Dr. Costa selflessly continued his work on the front lines, deeply committed to serving patients during this time of great need.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of one of our faculty members who did everything he possibly could do to care for patients during this critical time,” said E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs, UM Baltimore, and the John Z. and Akiko K. Bowers Distinguished Professor and Dean, University of Maryland School of Medicine.  “His memory will live on as an example to us all.”

After graduating from UMSOM, Dr. Costa completed his residency at the University of Maryland Medical Center in 1995.  He was then appointed Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine, where he continued as a volunteer faculty member until his passing.

“Dr. Costa was a great clinician, teacher, mentor, and role model for our medical students and Internal Medicine residents,” said Stephen N. Davis, MMBS, the Theodore Woodward Chair, Department of Medicine.   “It is a tremendous loss to the community, the City of Baltimore and the State of Maryland.  We send our sincere condolences to his family.  He was one of the most accomplished and brave clinicians that we have been privileged to know.”

Dr. Costa had been part of the Mercy family for more than two decades.  He joined Mercy in 1997 and became Chief of Critical Care there in 2005.  From 2010 to 2016, he served as an officer of the Mercy Medical Staff, culminating with his 2-year tenure as President of the Medical Staff.  He also served as Chairman of Mercy's Medical Morals Committee and as a member of the Mercy Health Services Board of Trustees Mission and Corporate Ethics Committee.

 In a joint letter to the Mercy Community, Sister Helen Amos, RSM, Executive Chair, Board of Trustees, and President and CEO David N. Maine, MD, expressed their admiration and respect for Dr. Costa:

“He was beloved by his patients and their family members—known for his warm and comforting bedside manner as well as his direct and informative communication style.  When he counseled our patients and families, he did so with great compassion and empathy.  For all the nurses and staff who worked closely with Joe on the Intensive Care Unit, he was like an older brother that all admired and revered,” they said.

Read The Baltimore Sun Obituary >


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