A Collaborative Partnership

This section provides guidance on the different entities and organizational
relationships that exist and how they relate to you as a faculty member or trainee.


Brigham and Women’s Health Care (BWHC) is the corporate parent for Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH), Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital (BWFH), Brigham and Women’s Physicians Organization (BWPO) and their subsidiaries.

  • Research Faculty and Research Fellows are likely to be employed by Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
  • Clinical Trainees may be employed by either Brigham and Women’s Hospital or Partners HealthCare, depending on the program.
  • Clinical Faculty are likely to be employed by the Brigham and Women’s Physicians Organization, which provides physicians with services, systems, and infrastructure in the clinical realm. The BWPO also serves as the representative of BWH physicians to the BWH, PHS, and in negotiations with external payers. The BWPO has a discrete leadership team, who report to the president of BWHC.


Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) and Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) founded Partners HealthCare (PHS) in 1994. Today, the Partners system consists of physician practices, community hospitals, a managed care organization, specialty facilities, community health centers, and other health related entities, in addition to the two founding academic medical centers. Together these members offer a continuum of coordinated, high-quality care. As an employee of BWH or the BWPO, you are also an employee of PHS.

In its corporate role, Partners manages a variety of consolidated departments and services for all member organizations including finance, government affairs, human resources, information systems, materials management, contracting, research management, and several others. Partners Pulse (pulse.partners.org) is the Intranet site that serves as a home to these department resources.

All employees at PHS institutions are assigned a 5-digit user name and password and an associated partners.org email address. It is strongly recommended that all PHS employees regularly check their Partners email or ensure it is forwarded to another account, even if your lab or clinic uses a different type of email account. You can forward to another account by updating your email address in the Partners Telephone Directory (ppd.partners.org).


BWH is one of 17 teaching affiliates of Harvard Medical School (HMS). Affiliate hospitals and institutes employ the physicians and scientists who hold faculty or fellow academic appointments at HMS.

Most faculty and trainees receive HMS appointments, which are coordinated through the respective BWH department. Therefore, you have two separate titles:

  • A BWH title (e.g. Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Resident, Associate
    Physician, Biostatistician)
  • HMS title (e.g. Research Fellow, Clinical Fellow, Assistant Professor of

Each institution provides distinct benefits:

  • BWH, the BWPO, or PHS, as your employer, provides your core benefits,
    including Medical, Dental, discounted T Pass, etc.
  • HMS provides your academic appointment, that offers additional access
    and discounts, including libraries, shuttles, facilities, etc. For more on this,
    look for the HMS Shield icon throughout this guide. Even with a Harvard appointment, you may not be eligible for all Harvard benefits, programs, and policies. An HMS ID badge is available upon full processing of your academic appointment, and more information on how to get the badge can be found under the Academic Life section.