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Federico Vaca, MD, MPH

Emergency Medicine
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Patient type treated
Child, Adult
Accepting new patients
Referral required
Not Applicable


Federico E. Vaca, MD, MPH, is a board certified emergency medicine physician who treats acutely and chronically ill and injured patients in the emergency department.

“Being able to provide a range of acute care treatments for patients when they are in their greatest need of medical care is one of the most rewarding parts of my job,” Dr. Vaca says. “Emergency medicine specialist like myself have trained many years to be able to initially care for patients with just about any condition when they present to our emergency department.”

As a bilingual Spanish speaker, he is able to translate medical care conversations for his patients and their families who need assistance. 

While Dr. Vaca is also board certified in primary care sports medicine; just a few of the conditions he treats include musculoskeletal conditions, traumatic injuries, infectious diseases, as well as cardiovascular and neurological emergencies. He also treats patients who develop severe symptoms and/or complications from a current medical condition, like cancer, or a previous medical/surgical procedure. 

“We believe we provide the best acute care treatment for patients so they will have the best chance for a more favorable prognosis, ultimately remaining active with a high quality of life,” Dr. Vaca says. “My goal is to help relieve pain and suffering and identify medical conditions that could make patients’ lives more challenging and complicated.”

Dr. Vaca’s research focuses on the prevention of injury and death due to motor vehicle crashes, which includes the study of adolescent development, young driver behaviors, the role of alcohol use disorders in crashes, and other related behaviors that influence the risk of crash/injury.

He is director of the Yale Developmental Neurocognitive Driving Simulation Research Center (DrivSim Lab). In this lab, he and a team of researchers use electroencephalography (EEG) brain imaging and eye tracking technology to study neurocognitive and behavioral processes of adolescents and young adults during driving simulations. 





  • Professor of Emergency Medicine and in the Child Study Center
  • Vice Chair for Faculty Affairs
  • Director, Yale Developmental Neurocognitive Driving Simulation Research Center (DrivSim Lab), Emergency Medicine

Education & Training

  • MPH
    University of California at Los Angeles (2002)
  • Fellow
    U.S. Department of Transportation and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) (2002)
  • Fellow
    University of California-San Diego (1996)
  • Chief Resident
    University of California, Irvine (1995)
  • Resident
    University of California-Irvine Medical Center (1995)
  • MD
    Creighton University School of Medicine (1992)

Languages Spoken

  • English
  • Español (Spanish)

Additional Information

  • Yale Emergency Medicine
    Yale New Haven Hospital
    20 York Street
    New Haven, CT, 06510
  • Yale Emergency Medicine
    Yale New Haven Shoreline Medical Center
    111 Goose Lane
    Guilford, CT, 06437