Dr. Donna Wolk among first to receive prestigious UA award
Donna M. Wolk, MHA, PhD, D(ABMM), associate professor of pathology, is one of three UA faculty members chosen to receive the first-ever 1885 Distinguished Scholars Awards at the UA. Created by then-President Eugene G. Sander, the awards acknowledge outstanding mid-career faculty members whose research, scholarship and creative contributions promise to catapult their disciplines to new levels of innovation.
Dr. Wolk is a member of the UA’s BIO5 Institute and director of the Infectious Disease Research Core and the Clinical Microbiology Labs at the Arizona Health Sciences Center. She is recognized for her contributions in reducing mortality from infections caused by “superbugs,” such as MRSA, through the rapid detection of drug-resistant bacteria.
Also receiving this award are Nathan Cherrington, PhD, associate professor of pharmacology and toxicology at the UA College of Pharmacy, and Shelly C. Cooper, DMA, associate professor of music at the UA School of Music.
Dr. Mindy Fain appointed executive director of practice innovation at AHSC
Mindy J. Fain, MD, section chief of geriatrics, general internal medicine and palliative medicine at the UA College of Medicine – Tucson and co-director of the UA Center on Aging, has been appointed executive director of practice innovation at the AHSC. In this new position, Professor Fain reports to the UA senior vice president for health sciences.
The AHSC Practice Innovation Program seeks to identify and implement innovative new ways to deliver high-quality health care at lower cost, resulting in improved health.
Dr. Fain is a longtime nationally recognized innovator in developing new models of care for frail elders with advancing chronic conditions. She has been instrumental in developing a chronic disease remote tele-monitoring program, with chronic-care protocols promoted for national use.
At the UA Center on Aging, she has helped to build a number of interprofessional programs, focusing on advancing chronic conditions, disease management and behavioral health.
Dr. Fain also co-directs the new Emerging Leaders in Healthcare Innovations Program, which prepares UA medical student scholars in the pursuit of the Institute of Medicine’s three-part aim of improving health, improving care and lowering costs. This program soon will open to students from all four UA health sciences colleges, as well as UA business students.
Dr. Maria Altbach to serve on NIH study section
Maria I. Altbach, PhD, associate professor in the UA Department of Medical Imaging, has been selected by the Department of Health and Human Services of the National Institutes of Health to serve as a member of the Medical Imaging Study Section, Center for Scientific Review, for a four-year term, which began July 1.
A member of The University of Arizona Cancer Center and the UA Sarver Heart Center, Dr. Altbach’s research focuses on the development of novel magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques for improving the diagnosis of disease. Working closely with clinicians, her group develops novel acquisition and reconstruction strategies to improve the diagnosis of heart, liver disease and cancer.
NIH study section members are selected on the basis of their demonstrated competence and achievement in their scientific disciplines. They contribute to the national biomedical research effort as they review and make recommendations on applications submitted to the NIH and survey the status of research in their fields of science.
Humanism awards granted to Drs. Carlos Gonzales and Natasha Bhuyan
Carlos Gonzales, MD, associate professor at the UA Department of Family and Community Medicine, and Natasha Bhuyan, MD, UA College of Medicine Class of 2012, were awarded the Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Awards at the College of Medicine senior breakfast. The Arnold P. Gold Foundation allocates the award to “the student and faculty member who best demonstrate the Foundation's ideals of outstanding compassion in the delivery of care, respect for patients, their families and health-care colleagues, as well as demonstrated clinical excellence.”
Dr. Gonzales, also an alumnus of the UA College of Medicine, has served as a mentor in the Societies Program since 2008. Dr. Bhuyan is completing a residency in family medicine at Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center in Phoenix.
Clint McCall named senior director of development for UA College of Medicine
As newly appointed senior director of development for the UA College of Medicine –Tucson, Clint McCall will oversee the college’s development, alumni relations and special events offices. McCall has been with the UA for 18 years, including seven as senior director of development for the UA Sarver Heart Center. There he increased the number of named endowments, including five above $1 million, and secured estate gifts in excess of $10 million while engaging clinical and basic science research faculty in the development process. McCall graduated from the UA in 1994 and joined the UA College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) as a program coordinator and adjunct instructor in Yuma, where he facilitated an off-campus degree program at Arizona Western College. After serving as admissions officer in the UA Office of Undergraduate Admissions, Phoenix/Yuma, he became assistant director of development with CALS. He then joined the UA Foundation, becoming director of the telephone outreach program before moving to the UA Sarver Heart Center.
Anesthesiology residents recognize Drs. C. Mark Bazzell and Ryan W. Matika
UA Department of Anesthesiology Assistant Professors C. Mark Bazzell, MD, and Ryan W. Matika, MD, each were named “Teacher of the Year” by graduating residents at a departmental event in June. In the same month, Dr. Bazzell also was named “Caregiver of the Month” by The University of Arizona Medical Center – University Campus.
Dr. Matika, who joined the UA College of Medicine faculty in 2010, will be the first fellow admitted to the new Critical Care in Medicine fellowship, established by Dr. Bazzell.
In his off hours, Dr. Bazzell pursues a passion for auto racing, participating in the sport on tracks in Arizona and Nevada. He and his wife, Susan K. Bazzell, MD, also a UA assistant professor of anesthesiology, serve as trackside physicians – “pit docs” – at the annual Formula One Grand Prix of Canada in Montreal.
RHPP brings alumni back to rural practice
More than half of the 23 Arizona physicians who are mentoring medical students this summer in the Rural Health Professions Program are graduates of the UA College of Medicine, and more than one-third of those participated in RHPP as students.
"We now have other graduates throughout the state, in places like San Luis, Yuma, Pinetop, Fort Mohave, Camp Verde, Flagstaff, Safford and Prescott, with more graduates returning each year," says Carol Galper, EdD, assistant dean for medical student education at the UA College of Medicine – Tucson. "It is exciting to see these physicians return to Arizona and to have them teach our RHPP students. RHPP has come full circle.
“Many of the students grew up in rural towns in Arizona and have a desire to practice in small communities, perhaps even returning to their hometowns. Their RHPP experiences help them understand the unique health-care needs of rural populations as well as strategies to address these needs, and help them decide about where they want to practice in the future.”
Mentors who also participated in the RHPP programs as students include Drs. Brock Amon and Ricky Ochoa in Yuma, Gail Guerrero in Safford, Matthew Hinton in Prescott and Shirley Rheinfelder in Prescott Valley.