AAMC News and Leadership Announcements, 2013 June 9

The current issue of AAMC News and Leadership Announcements is now available:

The West Virginia United Health System (WVUHS) Board of Directors on Saturday announced it has selected Christopher C. Colenda, MD, MPH, as its next President and CEO, effective in January 2014. Dr. Colenda currently is the Chancellor for Health Sciences at West Virginia University, having been appointed in November, 2009. Previously, he served as the Jean and Thomas McMullin Dean of the College of Medicine of Texas A&M Health Science Center and Vice President for Clinical Affairs. The announcement from WVUHS said that a search for Dr. Colenda’s successor at Health Sciences will begin in the near future. In January, J. Thomas Jones announced his plans to retire as CEO of WVUHS later this year. He has served as CEO since 2002. Dr. Colenda currently is the co-chair of the LCME.

The Syracuse Post-Standard reported on Friday, “Dr. David Duggan, dean of the medical school, told faculty and students [Thursday] that the Liaison Committee on Medical Education — LCME for short — notified him in a Wednesday night phone call of its decision to lift Upstate’s probationary status. The LCME put Upstate on probation in February of 2012 because of concerns over how the school was run, its curriculum and other issues.”

The New England Journal of Medicine on Wednesday published a perspective essay by Kathy L. Hudson, Ph.D., Alan E. Guttmacher, M.D., and Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D., of NIH firmly disagreeing with the Office of Human Research Protections (OHRP) over its March 7 determination concerning the Surfactant, Positive Pressure, and Oxygenation Randomized Trial (SUPPORT). The NEJM also published a letter from almost 50 prominent bioethicists and pediatricians also disagreeing with the OHRP decision. In response to the unprecedented public critique of its decision by HHS colleagues and highly respected members of the research and ethics community, OHPR on Tuesday put all compliance actions regarding the trial on hold.

M. Roy Wilson, M.D., M.S., on Wednesday was officially named the 12th President of Wayne State University, effective August 1. Dr. Wilson is currently deputy director for strategic scientific planning and program coordination at the NIH’s National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD). Previously, Dr. Wilson served as dean of the School of Medicine and vice president for health sciences at Creighton University, president of the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, and, concurrently, chancellor of the University of Colorado Denver and chair of the Board of Directors of University of Colorado Hospital.

Applications are now being accepted for the AAMC Executive Development Seminar for Associate Deans and Department Chairs, scheduled for September 26-30 in Babson Park (Wellesley), Mass. This program features faculty experts who will share their knowledge regarding leadership in academic medicine and science. Participants will learn leadership and managerial skills through the exploration of leadership and management topics, theories, and techniques. At the completion of the seminar, participants will emerge with a greater knowledge and an enhanced behavioral repertoire that they can use in their various roles and responsibilities in medical schools and teaching hospitals. Applications are due July 31.

The American Journal of Medicine has posted an important article titled, “Crooked Path Made Straight: The Rise and Fall of the Southern Governors’ Plan to Educate Black Physicians.”  The article, by Richard D. deShazo, MD; Keydron K. Guinn, PhD;  Wayne J. Riley, MD; and, William Winter, JD, reports, “In 1945, a wave of GI-Bill-supported African American students, qualified for admission to medical schools, returned from their service in World War II. The possibility that their acceptance would integrate all-white medical schools was a problem for the southern governors. The governors responded with a carefully considered plan to shunt these African American applicants to historically black medical colleges by joining in a Compact and attempting to purchase Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tennessee. This untold story of American medicine and its connection to our present shortage of African American physicians in the South needs to be remembered and passed on to future generations.”

The winners of the 2013 Taubman Prize for Excellence in Translational Medical Science were announced this week. Two physician-scientists whose research transformed chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) from a routinely fatal to a manageable condition share the prize. The $100,000 prize is given by the A. Alfred Taubman Medical Research Institute, based at the University of Michigan Medical School. The recipients are Brian Druker, M.D., of Oregon Health & Science University, whose work led to the development of the widely used drug Gleevec and served as the proof of principle for targeted cancer therapies, and Charles Sawyers, M.D., of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, whose studies on resistance to Gleevec led to the development of second generation drugs.

On Wednesday, the HHS Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) for HIT announced it has contracted with the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago “to develop methods for building a comprehensive interoperable and sustainable data infrastructure for patient-centered outcomes research (PCOR).” The HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) is partnering on the project, which will complement the PCORI National Patient-Centered Clinical Research Network. PCORI on Wednesday issued an RFP for the creation of a coordinating center for the network.

An article in Sunday’s San Jose Mercury News discussed the use of comparative effectiveness research by Kaiser Permanente to improve the delivery of health care to its customers. The article reported, “Many experts say the approach has such potential to transform the U.S. health system that the federal government will spend $3.5 billion on it through 2019 under national health reforms.” The article was referring to the provisions regarding PCORI.

Harold Jackson, editorial page editor of the Philadelphia Inquirer, has posted an essay concerning the physician shortage and the need for policy makers to address the crisis. The essay has been picked-up by several other papers.

Thursday’s New York Times reported, “More than 70 medical, research and advocacy organizations active in 41 countries and including the National Institutes of Health announced Wednesday that they had agreed to create an organized way to share genetic and clinical information. Their aim is to put the vast and growing trove of data on genetic variations and health into databases — with the consent of the study subjects — that would be open to researchers and doctors all over the world, not just to those who created them.” Dr. David Altshuler of the Broad Institute, a leader in planning the alliance, was interviewed by Science this week on the initiative.

Barnabas Health “has been chosen to provide consulting services to University Hospital, in Newark, which will remain a state-owned hospital following the dismantling of University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey that takes effect next month.” A New Jersey newspaper reported that, “UMDNJ said the selection of Barnabas, New Jersey’s largest not-for-profit health care delivery system, is subject to a 60-day review process that includes a review by the New Jersey Commissioner of Health.” Separately, Barnabas Health and Jersey City Medical Center signed a definitive agreement in mid-May for Jersey City Medical Center to become a member of the Barnabas Health system.

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center has signed a clinical affiliation agreement with Brockton Hospital’s parent organization. Under the agreement, the hospital will remain independent, but be “co-branded.”

The Texas Health Institute has published a new report, “Implementing Cultural and Linguistic Requirements in Health Insurance Exchanges.” It is part of the institute’s Affordable Care Act & Racial and Ethnic Health Equity Series.

The Food and Drug Administration this week published in the Federal Register a request for comments on the “proposed availability of de-identified and masked data derived from medical product applications.” According to the FDA, “Improving the efficiency and effectiveness of medical product development is a national priority. The ability to make available de-identified and masked clinical and preclinical data derived from marketing applications could make an important contribution to that goal by providing scientific data that may be of value in the generation of new knowledge to facilitate innovation in the development and evaluation of critically needed medical products. The contribution of patients who participate in clinical trials should be maximized for the benefit of society. The Agency invites comments on the issues to be considered with regard to such availability and on any limitations that should be placed on the availability of these data.” The comment deadline is August 5.

NIH has posted a new report summarizing survey results on changes implemented beginning in 2008 intended to enhance peer review.

The Center for Responsible Politics has posted a feature, “Top Schools for Federal R&D Grants Are Big Spenders on Lobbying, Campaign Contributions.” The short article is accompanied by data tables on individual university expenditures.

According to the Houston Chronicle, a breast cancer oncologist at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center was charged last week with aggravated assault against another faculty member, a specialist in lung and head and neck cancers. The charges, which the breast cancer oncologist strongly denies, involve poisoned coffee.

The Medical University of South Carolina has announced that Dr. Ben Clyburn, who now serves as Associate Dean for GME/Faculty Development, will be assuming the role of Designated Institutional Official and Associate Dean for GME, effective July 1, 2013. He succeeds Dr. Harry Clarke. Also at MUSC, Dr. Leonie Gordon of the MUSC Department of Radiology has been named Associate Dean for GME/Faculty Development, effective July 1.

Harold Wall, M.D., F.C.C.M., has been named the new chair of the Department of Anesthesiology at the University of Minnesota School of Medicine. He succeeds Richard C. Prielipp, M.D. Dr. Wall is currently chief of clinical anesthesiology at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and a professor of anesthesiology and cardiothoracic surgery at Washington University.

Graeme Smith, MD, Ph.D., has been appointed Head of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Queen’s University, Hotel Dieu Hospital and Kingston General Hospital. He first joined the faculty of Queen’s in 1999.

Donald Frey, M.D., Creighton University’s vice president for Health Sciences and the Roland L. Kleeberger Professor of Family Medicine, has been appointed chief academic officer for Alegent Creighton Health and Alegent Creighton Clinic. Dr. Frey will remain in his role at Creighton University and as a family physician at Alegent Creighton Clinic while serving in this advisory position for Alegent Creighton Health.

The University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) earlier announced the creation of a new Department of Dermatology in the College of Medicine. Last month, UTHSC announced that the department will be chaired by Kathryn Schwarzenberger, MD. Before joining UTHSC, Dr. Schwarzenberger was professor of medicine in the Division of Dermatology at the University of Vermont College of Medicine.

Larry Rhodes, M.D., who has served as the interim chair of the West Virginia University School of Medicine Department of Pediatrics for the past year, has been named its permanent chair. He will also serve as the physician-in-chief of WVU Children’s Hospital.

Dr. Samuel A. McQuiston Jr., assistant professor of radiology and co-director of the radiology residency program at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine, was recently appointed assistant dean for graduate medical education (GME) and Designated Institutional Official.

Jill M. Siegfried, Ph.D., has been named the next head of the Department of Pharmacology and Frederick and Alice Stark Endowed Chair at the University of Minnesota School of Medicine. She will assume this role and also serve as associate director for Experimental Therapeutics at the Masonic Cancer Center starting in September 2013. Dr. Siegfried is currently a professor in the Department of Pharmacology and Chemical Biology at the University of Pittsburgh.

Leon L. Haley Jr., MD, MHSA, associate professor of emergency medicine at Emory University School of Medicine, has been appointed the new Emory School of Medicine Executive Associate Dean of Clinical Services for Grady and Chief Medical Officer of the Emory Medical Care Foundation.

Ravi P. Kiran, MBBS, MS, Msc, FRCS, FACS, has been named chief and program director of the Division of Colorectal Surgery at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center. Dr. Kiran joins NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia from the Cleveland Clinic, where he was staff surgeon and head of the research section in the Department of Colorectal Surgery and director of its Rupert B. Turnbull Jr. School of Enterostomal Therapy.

“Lessons Learned: Stories from Women in Medical Management,” a new book by editor and author, Deborah Shlian, MD, MBA, profiles “24 exceptional female physicians who have defied the odds.”

Dr. Reginald Fitz, founding dean of the University of New Mexico School of Medicine, died on May 28th at the age of 92.

And finally… On Friday, Congressman John Dingell (D-MI) became the longest serving member of Congress in history, surpassing the record of the late Senator Robert F. Byrd. Congressman Dingell has served in the House since December 13, 1955, an astounding 57+ years. He won the seat in a special election following the death of his father, who had held the seat for 22+ years. Congressman Dingell is one of two House members remaining who are World War II veterans. The last Senator who was a veteran of that war died last week: Senator Frank Lautenburg. Cong. Dingell has been dean of the House since 1995. Congressman Dingell’s wife, Debbie Dingell, chairs the Board of Governors of Wayne State University.

Tony Mazzaschi

PS: Feel free to email <cas@aamc.org> if you have a problem accessing any article or resource mentioned in this summary. Also, have colleagues email <cas@aamc.org> if they would like to receive these news postings. We also welcome news tips and corrections.

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