Newswise — PHILADELPHIA – Jeffrey S. Berns, MD, associate chief of the division of Renal Electrolyte and Hypertension in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, received the 2018 Donald W. Seldin Distinguished Award from the National Kidney Foundation (NKF), an award given to clinicians who display excellence in clinical nephrology. Berns will accept this award during the NKF 2018 Annual Spring Clinical Meetings, April 10 -14, 2018 in Austin, Texas.

Berns, who also serves as associate dean for Graduate Medical Education, director of Penn’s Renal Fellowship Program and a professor of Medicine and Pediatrics in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, joined Penn Medicine’s faculty in 1989 after working in a private practice for more than 10 years. Over the last 29 years at Penn Medicine, Berns has specialized in caring for patients with chronic kidney disease, hypertension, electrolyte disorders, kidney failure, and lupus nephritis, among other diseases. His research is also focused specifically on dialysis, chronic kidney disease and kidney failure.

“Having worked with Jeff for more than nine years, I have seen, firsthand, the impact he has made both in the clinic and the classroom,” said, Lawrence B. Holzman, MD, Chief of the division of Renal-Electrolyte and Hypertension. “As a Nephrologist myself, understanding and appreciating Dr. Seldin’s legacy, Dr. Berns certainly embodies that same passion and dedication in caring for his patients. This is a very well deserved honor.”

The author of 200 original scientific publications and book chapters, Berns serves as co-deputy editor of the NKF’s American Journal of Kidney Diseases and Nephrology and as editor-in-chief and Dialysis Section co-editor for UpToDate, an evidence-based and physician-authored clinical decision support resource used for making the right point-of-care decisions.  Berns previously served on NKF’s Kidney Disease Outcomes Quality Initiative and Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes anemia clinical practice guideline workgroups; and as NKF/KDOQI vice-chair for Clinical Practice Guidelines and Commentaries. He is chair of the American Board of Internal Medicine Nephrology Subspecialty Board and immediate past-president of NKF. 

Berns earned his Bachelor of Arts in Biology and Psychology from the Indiana University, before receiving his Medical Degree from Case Western Reserve University. He also completed an Internal Medicine internship and residency at the University Hospitals of Cleveland, and a Nephrology Fellowship at the Yale University School of Medicine, where he then served as an Associate Research Scientist in the Department of Physiology.

The National Kidney Foundation is the largest, most comprehensive and longstanding organization dedicated to the awareness, prevention and treatment of kidney disease. The 2018 Donald W. Seldin Distinguished Award was established to recognize excellence in clinical nephrology in the tradition of one of the foremost teachers and researchers in the field, Dr. Donald W. Seldin.


Penn Medicine is one of the world’s leading academic medical centers, dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and excellence in patient care. Penn Medicine consists of the Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania (founded in 1765 as the nation’s first medical school) and the University of Pennsylvania Health System, which together form a $7.8 billion enterprise.

The Perelman School of Medicine has been ranked among the top medical schools in the United States for more than 20 years, according to U.S. News & World Report's survey of research-oriented medical schools. The School is consistently among the nation's top recipients of funding from the National Institutes of Health, with $405 million awarded in the 2017 fiscal year.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System’s patient care facilities include: The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and Penn Presbyterian Medical Center -- which are recognized as one of the nation’s top “Honor Roll” hospitals by U.S. News & World Report -- Chester County Hospital; Lancaster General Health; Penn Medicine Princeton Health; Penn Wissahickon Hospice; and Pennsylvania Hospital -- the nation’s first hospital, founded in 1751. Additional affiliated inpatient care facilities and services throughout the Philadelphia region include Good Shepherd Penn Partners, a partnership between Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network and Penn Medicine, and Princeton House Behavioral Health, a leading provider of highly skilled and compassionate behavioral healthcare.

Penn Medicine is committed to improving lives and health through a variety of community-based programs and activities. In fiscal year 2017, Penn Medicine provided more than $500 million to benefit our community.