Wayne State University

Aim Higher

School of Medicine

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James Blessman, M.D., M.P.H.
Assistant Professor, Part-time
(313) 224-9154

In my travels I have come to recognize the importance of wellness, and the challenges that the health system has in dealing with workers who have delayed recovery. I have therefore directed efforts to better characterize and understand these issues. Most specifically I am interested in:

1) interventions that help others develop and maintain positive wellness behaviors,
2) documenting the occupational health impact of wellness,
3) implementing and assessing the value of comprehensive occupational safety and health plans, and
4) designing systems and processes that effectively address and manage workers with delayed recovery.

In pursuit of these interests, I have come to recognize the importance of both mental and social fitness to complete health, and have developed a survey instrument known as the Citizen Report Card which provides both an assessment of where you are, and were you can go, towards achieving a life well lived.

Links of Interest

Dr. Blessman's publications and current grants coming soon.

Education Training


Dr. Blessman received his medical degree from Michigan State University in East Lansing in 1984. From there, he completed a residency in Internal Medicine at Butterworth Hospital in Grand Rapids in 1987 (now Spectrum Health), and then completed a second residency in Occupational Medicine and obtained a Masters in Public Health from the University of Washington in Seattle Washington in 1989.


As a faculty member in the Department  of Family Medicine and Public Health Sciences since 1989 I have had several enhancing experiences. This includes self-study in database design, which has allowed me to design a system that was used to track over 40,000 workers compensation claims in the City of Detroit, as well as a database that I use for continuous lifelong learning. I have also served as a grant reviewer for NIOSH for 4 years, and in the year 2003 was asked to serve on the National Advisory Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (NACOSH).

In 2001, I was chosen as one of 45 practitioners  in the country to received training on methods to increase the physical activity of communities. I have also had the opportunity to work with several organizations, which have all been enriching. Highlights include, an officer of MOEMA, and service on the Board of Directors for; Health Centers Detroit, the Institute for Population Health, YogaMedics, and the Michigan Public Health Institute.

Courses Taught over the Last 2 Years