Dean's Weekly Message

March 20, 2017


Dear colleague: 

The School of Medicine received a gratifyingly positive report last week from the site visit team from our accrediting agency, the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME). The team, which met with senior staff, faculty and students of the School last Sunday through Wednesday, gave me a verbal report before they left town. Among the school’s many strengths, they noted specifically, (1) the school’s mechanisms and processes for educational continuous quality improvement through monitoring curricular objectives, student achievement and program evaluation are exemplary; (2) the school’s provision of opportunities for professional development of faculty and residents is exceptional; and (3) the synergistic alignment of the clinical, research and service missions with the education mission across the school and its affiliates creates exceptionally strong support for the medical student program. The site visit team had 3 findings: (1) more student locker/storage space needed at University of Colorado Hospital; (2) a brief report needs to be submitted in a year after the first cohort of students at the Colorado Springs branch graduate; and (3) more effort to reduce student debt is needed.  I am confident that we can achieve these goals. The site visit team now will write its formal report and submit it to the LCME leadership, which is responsible for making the final determination about our accreditation. We expect the accreditation review process to be completed in June. 

I would like to thank everyone involved in making this visit successful and I particularly want recognize Senior Associate Dean for Education Bob Anderson, MD, LCME Accreditation Specialist Paula Harmer, MPP, and Office Manager Carolyn Goble for their attention to the myriad details related to this site visit.  We also received informal feedback about how impressed our visitors are with our medical students.  We have been given a great opportunity by those who have made our transition to the Anschutz Medical Campus successful. We have an impressive campus where our faculty and students work every day to advance medical science and improve human health. We are committed to sustaining an environment where your clinical, research and educational efforts are rewarding and creating new opportunities to improve the lives of our patients, students and communities. 

Match Day is Friday, March 17. Our graduating class of MD students will be gathering at the Denver Marriott City Center in downtown Denver to open their envelopes and to celebrate with family and friends as they prepare for the next stage of their lives. For those friends and family who are unable to attend in person, the School of Medicine will once again offer live streaming of the festivities. In previous years, we’ve had viewers from around the world watching as members of the class crowd in front of the camera to share their news. The event begins at 9 a.m., envelopes are opened at 10 a.m., followed by speakers and brunch. Here is the link for those who want to share the link to watch our Match Day events:

The University’s government relations team has been busy working at the state capital and in Washington, D.C., as lawmakers in Denver continue assembling the state budget and as Congress begins the debate over a proposal to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). On the state budget front, we are working with staff to answer questions about a proposal that would allow our faculty practice to expand access to specialty care for people who depend on Medicaid to pay for their healthcare. We are following a process allowed under federal law and that has been used by public medical schools and safety-net hospitals in 30 other states. This is a critical need in our state and we appreciate the bipartisan support we’ve received at the capital. Our team in Washington, D.C., has been encouraging lawmakers to ensure that any changes protect people who are now covered by ACA’s provisions for private insurance and the expansion of Medicaid coverage accessed by more than 30 states, including Colorado. In a letter to members of Congress, the Association of American Medical Colleges, the American Hospital Association and the Children’s Hospital Association wrote: “As organizations that take care of every individual who walks through our doors, both due to our mission and our obligations under federal law, we are committed to ensuring health care coverage is available and affordable for all.” 

Colorado’s Adult & Teen Congenital Heart Program (CATCH) has been awarded status as an ACHA ACHD Accredited Comprehensive Care Center by the Adult Congenital Heart Association (ACHA). The five-year accreditation unites our campus with other adult congenital heart disease (ACHD) providers in setting standards for consistent care for patients. Congratulations to Joseph Kay, MD, director of CATCH and associate professor of medicine and pediatrics, and others on the team who successfully completed this accreditation process.


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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