Dream a new dream

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.”
– C. S. Lewis

Phoebe Putney… Lasting Liaison…
We’ve been talking a fair amount recently about our regional campuses and the critical role they play in educating a generation of physicians that will be prepared to care for patients with needs that range from preventive to complex care. Our model, which has students learning and living across our state, also gives these future docs a real sense of what it’s like to practice medicine in those settings, insight which is critical in helping them make good practice choices for themselves and Georgia. These campuses and the participating hospitals and physicians also are absolutely essential to educating the large number of medical students we are privileged to serve.  Recently we had the pleasure of meeting with our great colleagues at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital in Albany, the home base for the Southwest Campus, our first regional campus established back in 2005! It was wonderful to discuss with them even more collaboration on a variety of fronts such as clinical care, student education and workforce development.  As Doug Patten, CMO at Phoebe, so kindly phrased it in follow up correspondence: We are clearly better together than we could ever be apart.  We absolutely second that emotion. To learn more about these terrific colleagues, visit — http://www.phoebeputney.com/.


Bigger Picture… Our Newest Colleagues

If you want to take a broader look at the impact of the nation’s newest medical schools on the country’s physician shortage and evolving health care structure, check out The Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation’s report, http://bit.ly/185VcKp. Did you know that when Florida State University established a medical school in 2000, it was the first new U.S. school in 20 years. We wish our newest colleagues our ongoing best and appreciate the sharing of lessons learned as we all move forward. As one of the nation’s first medical schools, we are proud to be at the forefront of innovative approaches to educating more physicians, such as our well-established regional campuses, including the impressive four-year campus in Athens in partnership with the University of Georgia. As just stated, we think this approach has the additional benefit of expanding horizons and future practice opportunities for our students. One definite is that old and new medical schools alike need great health care partners like Phoebe Putney and, of course, our own Health System!


Disaster Medicine… Bridging the Language Barrier… International Strength

We’d also talked some recently about the disaster medicine courses we helped develop in cooperation with the University of Georgia, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, and Texas A&M School of Public Health. You may also know that the National Disaster Life Support Foundation, Inc. based right here, oversees educational programs to better prepare health-care professionals and emergency response personnel for mass casualty events. Well China has heard about it all as well and Dr. Phillip Coule and Jack Horner recently traveled to China to work on an agreement that will translate these vital courses into Chinese and establish international training centers as well. Great news that we are reaching out to the most populous nation in the world! The two were then off to Tokyo to meet up with several other NDLSF board members as well as representatives from Japan, South Korea, and Thailand to plan a unified response to the unspeakable thought of nuclear and radiation events in that part of the world.  A follow-on conference is being planned to which additional nations will be invited. What an incredible contribution our Emergency Medicine folks continue to make.


Reaching Out… Reaching Back

Certainly our relationship with China is growing more reciprocal each day. Dr. Spring Kong recently welcomed two postdoc fellows from China to work in her lab. In the months ahead, Drs. Jing Zhao and Weijian Liu, both M.D./Ph.Ds. will be soaking in her strengths in clinical trials and personalized medicine, writing papers and grant proposals and helping with patient care. You may remember that Dr. Kong is still pretty new herself here, having joined us as the inaugural Chair of the Department of Radiation Oncology back in May, and it’s great she already is building these important relationships.  In mid-October we’ll have six accomplished physicians from China Jiangsu Province Department of Health here to spend a month with our outstanding physicians.  Just last month our university announced that it’s been awarded a Confucius Institute, in partnership with Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine. This will truly open doors to sharing of cultures, practices, hopes and dreams. In fact, our own Dr. Joe Tsien will take the lead on this multidimensional collaboration and partnership. The world really does seem to get smaller and that’s certainly an awesome thing when we use opportunities to share the best we have to offer.


Campus Safety … Prepared to Lead …

We mentioned a little earlier our role in optimally preparing frontline responders for managing the aftermath of disaster. This week, that message also was brought to campus in a workshop for senior leaders on how to prevent, prepare for, respond to and recover from a critical incident on campus. Certainly it was disconcerting to focus so hard on just what could happen but it was also a vital part of leadership training. An incredibly engaged group learned more about key elements such as chain of command, communication, timeliness, decision making – all clearly important every day, but their import is magnified in a disaster. We simply must be prepared. Truly great information and great discussion on short- as well as long-term ramifications of disaster. We so appreciate this effort on the part of the Office of Critical Event Preparedness and Response.


Making a Different Kind of Connection… of National Note

One of the unfortunate side effects of antipsychotic medications can be the movement disorder tardive dyskinesia.  Our own Dr. Anthony Ahmed has been selected as a young investigator travel awardee for the 2013 American College of Neuropsychopharmacology meeting in Hollywood, Fla., where he’ll discuss how the severity of this very unfortunate movement disorder and where it occurs in the body might also be predicated by the patient’s neurocognitive impairments. These are important relationships that need exploring as we work to take better care of patients and families. To learn more about the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, go here– http://www.acnp.org/.


Learning Leadership…Radiating Pride

Speaking of leadership, our Dr. Robert Mackey – one of 4,600 radiology residents in the country – was among a select 10 to receive a scholarship to attend the American College of Radiology Leadership Institute Seminar at Northwestern University in Evanston. The mission of the institute is to prepare leaders to shape the future of radiology, ensuring quality, service and great patient care in an increasingly complex health-care world. Sounds like Dr. Mackey may be well on his way. He’ll be sharing his experiences in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American College of Radiology. Awesome opportunity! Speaking of radiology and leadership, it’s time again for the Pool Society Weekend. This year’s focus is mammography and will feature speakers from here, Emory and Baylor College of Medicine. You can learn more about the society here, http://bit.ly/17N9NLU and about the leadership institute Dr. Mackey attended here — http://www.radiologyleaders.org/.


Pushing Past the Pain… Innovative Thinking… Maximizing Mobility…

Finally, we congratulate our GRU/UGA Medical Partnership faculty member, Dr. Jonathan Murrow, for receiving an American Heart Association grant to find a better way to help patients with peripheral arterial disease regain their mobility. We know that exercise can help these folks get better but their disease puts them in an ironic situation: to make real progress they need to exercise to the point of real pain and, frankly, most of us don’t want to do that. He’s assessing a non-invasive way to keep tabs on oxygen levels in leg muscles as a measure of effort instead so patients can reap the benefits without the often unbearable pain. Dr. Murrow is working with colleagues at the University of Georgia and Emory University on the study. You can read more here — http://news.gru.edu/archives/9570.


Upcoming Events…

Sept. 12 – GRU’s 3rd Annual Diversity and Inclusion Summit will be held at the Salvation Kroc Center. This year’s theme is, Challenge Your Perspective and will be held 9:30 a.m. to 8:15 p.m. To learn more, go to the event page– http://www.gru.edu/diversity/summit/.

Sept. 12 – GRU EII Health Sciences Education Grand Rounds, co-sponsored by the Department of Psychiatry and Health Behavior, Student and Faculty Perceptions of Class Attendance, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., EC 1210.

Sept. 13 – Mark your calendars at noon for the first MCG Faculty Senate meeting for the 2014 academic year. The event will be held in the Lee Auditorium.

Sept. 17-18 – Please join the GRU Research Community at the Innovation Summit at the Kroc Center. To learn more, follow this link http://www.gru.edu/oic/is13/.

Sept. 26-27 – The Southern Translational Education and Research (STAR) Conference 2013 will be held at the Augusta Marriott. Investigators in the field of clinical and translational science are invited to submit abstracts to be considered by Aug. 30th. Please contact Kim McKenzie at kmckenzie@rx.uga.edu and visit the website, www.rxugace.com/star for more information.

Oct. 2 – GRU EII Health Sciences Education Grand Rounds, co-sponsored by the College of Allied Health Sciences, Developing Interprofessional Sexual Health Competencies: Why We Should Care, noon-1 p.m., EC 1222.

Oct. 10– The MCG Alumni Association Regional Reception will be held at 6 p.m. at the Doublegate Country Club in Albany, Ga. http://binged.it/13RH1Yb.

Oct. 12 – The White Coat ceremony will be held at the Bell Auditorium at 3 p.m. with the reception immediately following at the Old Medical College building. Please check this event page on our MCG Facebook to follow details– http://on.fb.me/15N7Tfi.

Oct. 15 – Join in the grand opening of the Northwest Campus based in Rome at noon at the James D. Maddox Heritage Hall at Georgia Highlands College, 415 E. Third Avenue at Glenn Milner Blvd. in Rome. Follow this link for a map: http://binged.it/1cer6er and http://on.fb.me/14o75gA for the event page.

Oct. 15 –  The MCG Alumni Association Regional Reception will be held in Rome, Ga. at 6 p.m. at the Coosa Country Club http://binged.it/13RGSEa.

Oct. 26 – The MCG Alumni Association Regional Reception will be held in Augusta, Ga. at 6 p.m. at the Augusta Country Club.

Oct. 27 – The MCG Alumni Association Board Meeting will be held at 9:30 a.m. at the Alumni Center on the GRU Campus.

Nov. 15 – GRU EII Health Sciences Education Grand Rounds, co-sponsored by the Department of Oral Health and Diagnostic Sciences, Critical Thinking: Teaching and Measuring, noon-1 p.m., GC 5002.

Check out our MCG Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/grumcg and Twitter page as well #Follow.

Enjoy the weekend!