Dean's Weekly Message

September 25, 2023

Dear colleague: 

This is National APP Week and we join our colleagues across the country in celebrating the work of our Advanced Practice Providers. APPs on our faculty make many contributions to our School of Medicine in clinical, leadership, research, mentorship, and committee service roles. APPs are valued partners in the effective operation of our nation’s health care system and are frontline professionals in settings throughout our practice and across the state. We thank them for helping our patients stay healthy and our medical practice and academic medical center thrive.

Allison Kempe, MD, MPH, professor of pediatrics, has stepped down from her role as director of the Adult and Child Center for Outcomes Research and Delivery Science (ACCORDS), and Daniel Matlock, MD, MPH, professor of medicine, has been named interim director. Ally announced in June 2022 that she planned to step down after leading ACCORDS for nearly a decade. Since it was established in 2014, ACCORDS has become a powerhouse campus resource for supporting research proposals and providing expanded training and mentorship for fellows and junior faculty. In the past year alone, the center offered educational programs attended by more than 1,200 people, fellowship training for 16 people, and assistance to 100 researchers working on early career funding opportunities. Ally has been on our faculty for more than 30 years, serving as a strong advocate with a distinguished track record as a health services, outcomes, and implementation science researcher. We are grateful for Ally’s dedicated service, and we thank Dan for filling the role on an interim basis as we finalize the recruitment of the next ACCORDS director.

The New England Journal of Medicine last week posted the second video in its series on type 2 diabetes that features Jane E.B. Reusch, MD, professor of medicine, bioengineering, and physiology. This episode focuses on tailoring care and education to the individual patient, with an emphasis on addressing the impact that health inequities can have on diabetes management. This installment is as good as the first video and Jane is again prominently featured.

Eric Lavonas, MD, professor of emergency medicine at Denver Health and the Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Center, is lead author of updated guidance, published last week by Circulation, for resuscitation of patients with cardiac arrest, respiratory arrest, and refractory shock due to poisoning. Eric said the last comprehensive update was 13 years ago and since then many factors have changed, particularly the opioid crisis, which has grown to six times the size it was. Among Eric’s co-authors are Christopher Hoyte, MD, professor of emergency medicine, and George Sam Wang, MD, associate professor of pediatrics.

CT Lin, MD, professor of medicine and chief medical information officer for UCHealth, is quoted in a recent news report by KFF Health News that explores whether health systems should charge patients for email consultations with physicians. Health systems that have adopted billing for some e-visits include Cleveland Clinic, Mayo Clinic, UCSF Health, and Vanderbilt Health. CT describes the dilemma of adding charges in these cases: “We see physicians working two to four hours every evening on their patient emails after their shift is over, and that’s not sustainable. But we worry that patients with complex disease will stop messaging us entirely because of this copay risk.”

The Office of Advancement hosted a celebration on Thursday, September 21, to honor Warren Binford, JD, EdM, as inaugural recipient of the W.H. Lea for Justice Endowed Chair in Pediatric Law, Ethics and Policy. Warren is an international children’s rights scholar and advocate. She joined our School of Medicine in 2020. Thursday’s ceremony was included near the end of a daylong symposium, Advocating for Children in Migration, which included panels on approaches to advocacy that include arts and literature, law, medicine and behavioral health, music, and performing arts. The endowed chair ceremony concluded with the world premiere of Soul Echoes by composer J.E. Hernández.

Casey Greene, PhD, chair of biomedical informatics, and Lucas Gillenwater, graduate student in the computational biosciences PhD program, will be speaking on artificial intelligence and ChatGPT at Tattered Cover Book Store, 2526 E. Colfax Ave., Denver, at 6 p.m. Thursday, September 28. They will present a primer on the science and then lead an audience discussion.

Calls for Action
All students in programs on the Anschutz Medical Campus are invited to register for the Student Research Forum Poster Presentation, which will be held at 1 p.m. Tuesday, December 5. The deadline to upload an abstract and poster is Wednesday, November 8. Full details can be found on the Student Research Forum Website. Faculty judges are needed, and because this event will be virtual, you can judge from anywhere with a good internet connection and Zoom capabilities. More information and sign-up on this Call for Virtual Judges.

Faculty and staff members with prescriptions under CU Health Plans that are administered by Anthem need to complete the process of changing their pharmacy if they haven’t already done so. During this year’s open enrollment for benefits, the university announced that CVS Caremark would be managing pharmacy benefits beginning July 1, 2023. Employees with long-term maintenance prescriptions are required to fill these prescriptions in 90-day quantities from a CVS pharmacy location or by mail through the CVS Caremark Mail Service Pharmacy. For those who have not updated their pharmacy, it is urgent to get prescriptions updated. An article in CU Connections has additional detail, as does the University of Colorado employee services website. If you have questions about the process, you should contact or call 303-860-4200, option 3.

Have a good week,

John J. Reilly, Jr., MD
Richard D. Krugman Endowed Chair
Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs and
Dean, School of Medicine

The Dean’s weekly message is an email news bulletin from John J. Reilly, Jr., MD, Dean of the CU School of Medicine, that is distributed to inform University of Colorado School of Medicine faculty members, staff, students and others about issues pertaining to the School’s mission of education, research, clinical care and community service.  See the UCH-Insider →

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