What's Going on Here?

February 3, 2014


Dear colleague:

It was quite a week, culminating in the game last night, which I watched with part of my family in Westborough, Mass. It was odd to be in a city that really didn’t care about the game, but our small island of Broncos fans had a wonderful time together, at least for the first 10 seconds of the game.  An intergenerational condolence session followed with my son explaining to his sons what it was like to watch the Broncos lose the big game four times when he was growing up. His sons were not consoled.  Oh well, it is now time to focus on the Avalanche, the Olympics, and in 12 days, the opening of spring training for the Rockies. There is always a next year.

My email last week attracted a number of replies, including two from faculty at National Jewish Health expressing dismay with my reporting about my visit to the National Jewish Board the previous week. I had a discussion about this with the Faculty Officers last week, and we will have a discussion of how we have evolved to the current state at the next Faculty Senate meeting. It should be clear that it is in the best interests of all our faculty to do what we can to keep research relationships and academic programs intact. But it is also clear that we cannot dissociate parts of our clinical group practice to support activities that harm our major hospital affiliates.

University Physicians, Inc., held its Annual Member Meeting last Tuesday evening, reporting another year of stellar results. Improvements in clinical productivity yielded a year of record support to the School and proved again that our faculty are our source of financial strength and stability. Thank you for your dedication and hard work.

Congratulations to David Fullerton, MD, professor of surgery and chief of the division of cardiothoracic surgery, who has been elected president of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons, which represents more than 6,800 surgeons, researchers and health care professionals worldwide.  Dave will lead the Society as it begins its second half century of service to those dedicated professionals.

The Gallery of the Health Sciences Library will be exhibiting prints of Norman Rockwell illustrations of Mark Twain novels beginning today, Feb. 3, and running through Friday, Feb. 28.  The exhibit, “Poignant Humorists,”is made possible by a donation from David R. Gillingham, MD ’63, and his wife, Martha, in memory of Robert W. Hendee, MD ’61. To celebrate the gift, the library will host a lecture by Pamela Laird, PhD, professor of history at University of Colorado-Denver, on Feb. 13 at noon in the Reading Room.

The University of Colorado Travel, Expedition and Altitude Medicine (TEAM) clinic, located in the University of Colorado Hospital’s Anschutz Outpatient Pavilion, recently opened. So far they’ve counseled someone heading to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, helped a traveler in Colorado deal with problems of altitude and advised a woman worried over how traveling in the mountains could affect her pregnancy.

Initial applications for the 2014 Boettcher Foundation Webb-Waring Biomedical Research Awards Program are due Friday, Feb. 7. The program supports early career investigators and is intended to fund translational research that advances a discovery closer to clinical applications. Four Boettcher Foundation Investigators will be named and each will receive an award of $225,000 for research conducted over a one- to three-year period.

A television news report that appeared last August featuring Vietnam veteran Lou Nonay and Evalina Burger, MD, associate professor of orthopedics, will be honored with a Media Orthopaedic Reporting Excellence (MORE) Award at a ceremony on Thursday, May 1. The award, from the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, recognizes the reporter for accurately and creatively telling a story about musculoskeletal issues. This is indeed a fascinating story about how Evalina found a piece of flak jacket, which was lodged near Lou’s spine after being shot more than 40 years ago, causing a potentially deadly infection.

I encourage faculty to take a look at a letter University of Colorado Hospital President and CEO John Harney sent this past week regarding a change in how U.S. News & World Report gathers information for its annual rankings. In the past, the magazine asked 200 board-certified specialists in 16 specialties for their opinions. Now, the magazine is expanding its survey to include board-certified physicians who have accounts with Doximity, an online networking tool for physicians. While the rankings are an oversimplified snapshot of the service we provide our patients, students and the community, this is one small opportunity to influence the score the magazine gives.

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. See the UCH-Insider →

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