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Oct. 21, 2013

What's Going on Here?


Dear Colleague,

I am writing this, as usual, on Sunday afternoon, which has been a somewhat gloomy day from a weather perspective.  And the Broncos loss in Indianapolis yesterday evening made it gloomier.  Meanwhile, the Kansas City Chiefs look pretty good.

It was a really rewarding, full week last week (and this one looks no less so). The Executive Committee of the School of Medicine met Tuesday and unanimously supported moving ahead with the formation of the new basic science departments that we have been discussing for the last several months. It is a move that we believe will position the School to be more successful in our basic science research mission. The proposal came from faculty leaders during our strategic-planning discussions over the past year. It allows us to focus precious resources in a productive direction at a time when federal grant support is wavering.

Also on Tuesday, the UPI Board reviewed the audited financial statements for the last academic year (it was a very good year) and also the updates on the governance changes proposed through the clinical strategic plan. I missed the UCH medical board meeting to attend the annual fundraising lunch for the Depression Center, a very nice event with a good speaker that raised $250,000. I came back to a really nice interchange with 14 faculty who showed up for one of my dialogues with the dean, and then headed out to DIA to pick up Glenn Steele, Jr., MD, PhD, president and CEO of Geisinger Health System.  Glenn was a surgery resident here from 1970 to 1975, chair of surgery at New England Deaconess Hospital in Boston, dean at the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine before moving to Geisinger.  We had dinner with Patty Gabow, MD, professor emerita of medicine and former CEO of Denver Health, who has worked with Geisinger in an advisory capacity and had a really good conversation about the pursuit of rationality in the health care system in the U.S.

Glenn was in town for an event on our campus the next day – a six-hour workshop on innovation in health care organized by Phil Weiser, JD, dean of the University of Colorado Law School.  The conference brought together lawyers, physicians, nurses and health care entrepreneurs to consider “The Future of Health Care Innovation.”  The distinguished group of executives and academics spent the afternoon discussing how developments in personalized medicine and changing models of care delivery are altering the process of providing health care. The meeting was part of a series of talks sponsored by Silicon Flatirons, a Center for Law, Technology and Entrepreneurship at the University of Colorado. It was an interesting afternoon and nice to see some collaboration with the Boulder campus.

Thursday was Women’s Health Research Day with Virginia Miller, PhD, professor of physiology and surgery at Mayo Clinic, delivering the keynote.  I had dinner with her the night before her talk, which was followed by a poster session. I left there for another dinner downtown, where Children’s Hospital Foundation was celebrating the first Frankenburg-Camp Lecture.  Bill Frankenburg, MD, who retired from our faculty in 1991, was a developer of the Denver Development Screening Test, which encouraged early identification of children with developmental problems by health professionals and has been adopted worldwide.  Bonnie Camp, MD, PhD, professor emerita of pediatrics, funded the endowment with the Frankenburg family, who came to Denver from Seattle for the dinner and initial lecture, which was given Friday by Paul Dworkin, MD, professor of pediatrics at the University of Connecticut and executive vice president for community child health at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.

We get a reminder today that we have been adapting and evolving since the School of Medicine was established. At noon, historian Tom Sherlock gives a lecture, “The University of Colorado School of Medicine, 1883-1918,” in the Gossard Forum of the Fulginiti Pavilion for Bioethics and Humanities. I believe that we still have a few boxes of the history of the School of Medicine that was done by Henry Claman, MD, and Bob Shikes, MD, and released in 1983 – our centennial year.  Let me know if you want one.

The University Health System Consortium (UHC) last week announced its rankings for Quality Leadership among academic hospitals and our partner, University of Colorado Hospital, ranked in the top 10 for the fourth consecutive year. UHC is an alliance of the nation’s leading nonprofit academic medical centers. The award is given to UHC member centers that have demonstrated superior performance in delivering high-quality patient care.

I mentioned last week that the Senior Associate Dean for Education Celia Kaye, MD, PhD, will be leaving at the end of the year. As a result, we are looking to hire a person who will be responsible for leading the School’s education enterprise. This is a 0.5 FTE position. Applicants should have substantial administrative experience including responsibility for budgets and personnel. A senior faculty appointment in the School of Medicine is required. Senior Associate Dean for Research Affairs Chip Ridgway, MD, is heading the search. The description for the position can be found here.

The School of Medicine is also recruiting an Assistant Dean for Essentials Core Curriculum. This person will be responsible for the planning, management, oversight and leadership of the School of Medicine’s MD Essentials Core curriculum (Phases I & II). This is a 0.50 FTE position supported by Undergraduate Medical Education. The job posting can be found here. If you have any questions, contact Associate Dean for Curriculum Stephen Wolf, MD.

Finally, at the CU-Charleston Southern University football game in Boulder this past Saturday, First Lady of the University Marcy Benson told me that I should let everyone know how good the healthy lunches are at the Bistro Elaia at the Anschutz Health and Wellness Center.  I never ignore the First Lady’s advice (particularly when it is right on).

Have a good week,

Richard D. Krugman, MD
Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs and
Dean, School of Medicine

"What’s Going On Here" is an email news bulletin from Richard Krugman, MD, Dean of the CU School of Medicine, that is distributed to inform University of Colorado School of Medicine faculty members about issues pertaining to the School’s mission of education, research, clinical care and community service. If you would like to receive these emails directly, or to unsubscribe, please contact Cheryl.Welch@ucdenver.edu.

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