Bascom Palmer's patient access representatives.
Lisandra Afanador walked into the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute more than 11 years ago gripping her small son’s hand as tightly as she would at the edge of a cliff. Her head was spinning, and her heart was heavy with emotion. She was sad, hopeful, anxious, and afraid.
“My son suffered from everything,” she said. Adriel Afanador, then 9, was visiting Bascom to treat glaucoma and cataracts, among others diseases. He was small for his age, and hyperactive. “I was so afraid of how he would handle this,” recalls Afanador.
Soon after her first visit, Afanador met Vanessa Bello, manager of patient access at Bascom Palmer. “I knew she was special; she is someone you don’t forget.”
Read more about Bascom Palmer's patient access representatives »
Carol M. Davis, D.P.T., Ed.D., M.S.
Carol M. Davis, D.P.T., Ed.D., M.S., the longtime Vice Chair of the Miller School of Medicine’s Department of Physical Therapy who played a key role in establishing its highly ranked curriculum, recently made a generous gift to support the program.
Davis created The Excellence in Therapeutic Presence Award, which will provide an annual award to an outstanding graduate student who demonstrates excellence during his or her education in physical therapy, and is sensitive to the needs of the patients when delivering therapeutic care and treatment.
Read more about Dr. Davis' gift »
Chanelle Diaz and Hansel Tookes, M.D., M.P.H.
More than five years of research, letter-writing, meetings, lobbying and other activities finally paid off this spring, when Florida Governor Rick Scott signed the Miami-Dade Infectious Disease Elimination Act (IDEA), the fourth version of a bill authorizing a pilot needle-exchange program for Miami-Dade County, into law.
Under the program, which will be run by the Miller School of Medicine, users of injection drugs will be given free, clean needles and syringes in exchange for used ones at specified clinics and via a mobile van that will travel to reach those without transportation. Participants will be educated on proper injection technique (using a clean syringe every time), and offered immunizations, as well as viral hepatitis and HIV testing, and linkage to treatment. Importantly, these programs will provide access to detox and drug treatment programs. The goal will be to get the drug users into rehab without having contracted HIV or hepatitis C.
Read more about the needle-exchange law »
Robert J. Myerburg, M.D.
Robert J. Myerburg, M.D., professor of medicine and physiology, and the American Heart Association Chair in Cardiovascular Research, has written a pair of journal articles supporting electrocardiographic (ECG) screening of college athletes and, in principle, screening of children and adolescents not involved in sports.
For years there has been considerable debate within the cardiology field about the desirability of performing routine ECGs as a component of pre-participation screening of student-athletes — or in children and adolescents generally.
Read more about ECG screening »
2016 George Paff Teaching Award winners.
To teach Miller School students about renal conditions, Warren Kupin, M.D., professor of medicine, often sprinkles his lectures with jokes and puns. “What is a kidney’s favorite rock band? The Rolling Stones,” or “How do medical students pass my class? Make like a kidney and concentrate!”
Kupin was one of 18 outstanding Miller School of Medicine instructors honored by their students at the 2016 George Paff Teaching Awards Ceremony on April 28 at the University of Miami Hospital Seminar Center. Second-year students Shirin Razdan and Matthew Chen co-chaired the ceremony, assisted by Soum Lokeshwar, Sophia Liu and Catherine Lee.
Read more about the Paff Teaching Awards »
From left, Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D., Omaida Velazquez, M.D., Danny Sleeman, M.D., Alan Livingstone, M.D., and Duane Hutson, M.D.
In a ceremony that highlighted several generations of physicians of the DeWitt Daughtry Family Department of Surgery at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, the Duane G. Hutson Endowed Chair in Surgical Education was presented to Danny Sleeman, M.D., professor of surgery, Vice Chairman of Surgical Education and Director of the Surgical Education Program.
Sleeman became the inaugural holder of the chair April 18 before Miller School leadership, family, friends and colleagues who gathered at the University of Miami Hospital.
Read more about Dr. Sleeman receiving the Hutson Chair »
From left, Stephen D. Nimer, M.D., Steven M. Altschuler, M.D., Julio Frenk, Norman Braman, Irma Braman, Dolores Lampert, Edward Lampert, Nicholas Lampert, Kinga Lampert, Nina Lampert, Marc E. Lippman, M.D., and Adam E. Carlin.
Leaders from Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, the University of Miami and the Miller School of Medicine joined with breast cancer research supporters to celebrate the dedication of the new Kinga and Edward Lampert Laboratory for Breast Cancer Research at the Braman Family Breast Cancer Institute. Funded by a $1.5 million gift from the Lampert Foundation, the laboratory will support critical breast cancer research conducted by Marc E. Lippman, M.D., Deputy Director of Sylvester.
“My life’s work has been in breast cancer, as a physician and as a scientist, and it’s a team sport,” said Lippman, who is also Kathleen and Stanley Glaser Professor, at the ceremony, held on April 20. “It’s an incredible commitment of a community of people, saying, ‘We can and will end breast cancer!’ We are so amazingly grateful to the Lamperts. Their gift really makes an impact.”
Read more about the Lampert Laboratory »
Ralph Sacco, M.D., M.S., and Tatjana Rundek, M.D., Ph.D.
Renowned neurologists at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine have written an editorial published in the April 21 edition of the New England Journal of Medicine that strongly supports a multi-center stroke study, “One-Year Risk of Stroke after Transient Ischemic Attack or Minor Stroke.”
The editorial, titled “The Value of Urgent Specialized Care for TIA and Minor Stroke,” was authored by Ralph L. Sacco, M.D., M.S., professor and Chairman of Neurology, and Olemberg Family Chair in Neurological Disorders, and Tatjana Rundek, M.D., Ph.D., professor of neurology and Vice Chair for Clinical Translational Research.
Read more about the editorial comments »
Robert S. Kirsner, M.D., Ph.D.
Robert S. Kirsner, M.D., Ph.D., Harvey Blank Professor and Chairman of the Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery, was elected to the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Dermatology and the American Academy of Dermatology Association. He will serve a four-year term that will begin at the conclusion of the Academy’s 75th Annual Meeting in March 2017.
The American Academy of Dermatology is the world’s largest dermatologic society, which represents more than 19,000 physicians who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of skin, hair and nail conditions. The Board of Directors runs those organizations.
Read more about Dr. Kirsner's election »
Scott C. Brown, Ph.D., left, with Joanna Lombard, M.Arch.
A new study of a quarter-million Miami-Dade County Medicare beneficiaries showed that higher levels of neighborhood greenness, including trees, grass and other vegetation, were linked to a significant reduction in the rate of chronic illnesses, particularly in low- to middle-income neighborhoods.
Led by researchers at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine’s Department of Public Health Sciences and the University of Miami School of Architecture, the study showed that higher greenness was linked to significantly lower rates of diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol, as well as fewer chronic health conditions.
The findings, published online April 6 by the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, are based on 2010-11 health data reported for approximately 250,000 Miami-Dade Medicare beneficiaries over age 65, and a measure of vegetative presence based on NASA satellite imagery. The study was the first of its kind to examine block-level greenness and its relationship to health outcomes in older adults, and the first to measure the impact of greenness on specific cardio-metabolic diseases.
Read more about the research »
Eduardo C. Alfonso, M.D., and Philip J. Rosenfeld, M.D., Ph.D.
Bascom Palmer Eye Institute’s Chairman, Eduardo C. Alfonso, M.D., and Philip J. Rosenfeld, M.D., Ph.D., have been named two of the world’s 100 Most Influential People in Ophthalmology by The Ophthalmologist, a leading British publication, in its just-released 2016 Power List. Alfonso is known for his clinical expertise and research in eye diseases, corneal surgery, corneal transplantation and ocular microbiology. Rosenfeld is one of the world’s leading experts on age-related macular degeneration.
The members of the Power List, which include physicians, vision scientists and business leaders, were selected from nominations received from throughout the world.
Read more about the Bascom Palmer physicians »
From left, Guillermo Prado, Ph.D., doctoral student Lourdes Molleda, Hilda Pantin, Ph.D., Lidiana Baster and Brandon Raymond.
Lidiana Baster and her son Brandon Raymond are living healthier lives, thanks to Familias Unidas, an innovative University of Miami Miller School of Medicine program for Hispanic families. On April 19, the Miami family members told members of Congress about the positive impact of Familias Unidas at a Washington briefing on “Supporting Healthy Parenting through Primary Care.”
“Since joining our Familias Unidas a year ago, Brandon has lost more than 30 pounds,” said Guillermo “Willy” Prado, Ph.D., Miller Professor of Public Health Sciences, Director of the Division of Prevention Science and Community Health, and Dean of the Graduate School. “By improving family communication and engagement, our program has been highly successful in reducing obesity, high-risk sexual behaviors and substance abuse among Hispanic youth ages 12-17.”
Read more about the Washington briefing »
From left, Payal Shah, D.O., Judy Schaechter, M.D., M.B.A., Jacqueline Larson, M.D., and Kristin Irmiter, M.D., M.B.A.
The inaugural Dr. Henry Gelband Pediatric Research Symposium, sponsored by the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine Department of Pediatrics and Holtz Children’s Hospital/Jackson Health System, highlighted original research and scholarly work by UM/Jackson pediatric residents and clinical and postdoctoral fellows.
The program’s namesake, Henry Gelband, M.D., professor emeritus of pediatric cardiology and honorary chair of the symposium, moderated the platform session in a packed auditorium at the Mailman Center for Child Development on March 17.
Read more about the research symposium »
Adam E. Carlin.
Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, part of UHealth – the University of Miami Health System, has announced that Adam E. Carlin, Managing Director and Senior Portfolio Management Director at Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management, has been appointed Chairman of the Board of Sylvester Board of Governors. Sylvester also announced five new Board members.
“We are very grateful to Adam for accepting the position as Chair of our Board,” said Stephen D. Nimer, M.D., Director of Sylvester. “Adam has been a Sylvester champion and Board member for many years and I’ve gotten to know him as a deeply respected community leader, with a keen business sense and true passion for the work we do at Sylvester. I look forward to his leadership as Chair and his valuable counsel.”
Read more about the Sylvester appointments »
Standing, from left, Barth Green, M.D., Damien D. Pearse, Ph.D., and W. Dalton Dietrich, Ph.D. Seated, Jocelyn H.K. Watkins.
Damien D. Pearse, Ph.D., professor in the Department of Neurological Surgery and The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, has been installed as the John M. and Jocelyn H.K. Watkins Distinguished Chair in Cell Therapies.
“I sincerely thank Jocelyn and John Watkins for this very special honor,” Pearse said. “The critical support that will be generated by the endowed chair will allow my laboratory and The Miami Project to continue to develop new treatments for our spinal cord-injured population.”
Pearse’s research focuses on the investigation of novel strategies to protect and repair the injured spinal cord. He and his research team have been integral to The Miami Project’s success in obtaining FDA approval for its phase I clinical trials involving Schwann cell therapy for both the subacute and chronically injured. While Pearse continues to conduct basic research on spinal cord injury and test strategies to promote functional recovery, he is deeply involved with providing the critical data necessary to move future treatments forward.
Read more about the endowed chair »
Antonio C. Marttos, Jr., M.D.
Antonio C. Marttos, Jr., M.D., associate professor of surgery and Director of Global e-Health/Trauma Telemedicine at the William Lehman Injury Research Center, has been named the 2016 recipient of the Person of the Year Award in the 19th Annual Brazilian International Press Awards U.S.A., a recognition program that is part of the Focus Brazil Foundation.
The award notification said Marttos had been selected for his “outstanding performance and contribution to the Brazilian positive image in the United States.”
Read more about Dr. Marttos' award »
Medical and nursing students practice resuscitating a heart attack patient.
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More than 70 medical and nursing students joined faculty members from the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, the Gordon Center for Research in Medical Education and the University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies for an interprofessional training session held at the Gordon Center on March 28. The goal of the session was for students to learn team communication and management skills.
Hector F. Rivera, M.D., Assistant Director of Curriculum and Technology Development at the Gordon Center, and co-director of the course, introduced students to the TeamSTEPPS (Team Strategies and Tools to Enhance Performance and Patient Safety) curriculum developed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The students were then divided into teams and practiced patient emergency scenarios and team-building exercises. Debriefing and feedback sessions followed, providing positive reinforcement on teamwork behaviors and skills, patient management and outcomes, and insight into areas of improvement.
Read more about the training session »
David S. Kushner, M.D.
David S. Kushner, M.D., associate professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation and a neurologist with substantial experience in post-surgical care of patients who have had a trepanation — boring a hole in the skull to treat intracranial disease or to help reduce swelling following a traumatic brain injury — has contributed a chapter providing a modern perspective on the procedure to an upcoming book describing its history dating back more than 2,000 years.
“Ancient Trepanation from the Perspective of Modern Neurosurgery,” the ninth chapter of Holes in the Head: The Art and Archaeology of Trepanation in Ancient Peru (Dumbarton Oaks, June 2016), was written by Kushner and Anne R. Titelbaum, Ph.D., a biological anthropologist at the University of Arizona College of Medicine, with CT scans provided by Robert Quencer, M.D., professor and Chair of the Department of Radiology, and Jose Romano, M.D., professor of neurology, used to illustrate some of their discussions. The book’s main author and editor, John W. Verano, Ph.D., professor of anthropology at Tulane University, invited Kushner to contribute the chapter.
Read more about Dr. Kushner's book chapter »
From left, Rochelle Bradley, RN, Adrian Ruiz (who was named prom king), Isamar Ruiz, Samantha Pardo, Valentina Chica, Bianca Scarscelli and Jessica Ardente, ARNP.
Nine teens from Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer recently had a chance to enjoy one of the highlights of adolescence — the prom. Leaving from alex’s place after makeup artists and stylists helped them get ready, the teens were transported by limo to the Ritz-Carlton Fort Lauderdale, where they were joined by other young oncology patients from the tri-county region.
“For our patients, this prom could be something they’ve never experienced before,” said Kristine Morales, Nurse Manager of alex’s place. “They get to dress up, have fun and forget everything they’re going through.”
Read more about A Prom To Remember »
Members of the Public Health Student Association gather for the inaugural Public Health Awareness Night at Marlins Park.
Protecting the health of a community is no small task, but it is the primary mission of the University of Miami’s Public Health Student Association. As the flagship student group dedicated to developing the future cadre of public health professionals, PHSA members partnered with the Miami Marlins on April 20 to host the inaugural Public Health Awareness Night at Marlins Park, raising more than $3,000 to support the PHSA’s community outreach and health fairs.
In collaboration with PHSA advisor Nancy Alvarez, Senior Program Coordinator for the Masters of Public Health program, PHSA members organized a series of public health activities before and during the game to emphasize community health promotion and disease prevention. Children of all age groups, and their parents, engaged in activities highlighting the importance of physical activity, balanced healthy diets, smoking cessation, mosquito control and learning about public health.
Read more about Marlins Night »
Robert A. Weinberg, Ph.D.
Robert A. Weinberg, Ph.D., a renowned oncologist and winner of the National Medal of Science in 1997, will headline Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center’s 17th annual Zubrod Memorial Lecture and Cancer Research Poster Session on Tuesday, May 10.
Weinberg is a Founding Member of Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, the Daniel K. Ludwig Professor of Biology and Director of the Ludwig Center for Molecular Oncology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. An internationally recognized authority on the genetic basis of human cancer, he will present “Mechanism of Carcinoma Malignant Progression” at 2:45 p.m. in the Lois Pope LIFE Center auditorium.
Read more about the Zubrod Memorial Lecture »
The Women in Academic Medicine Advisory Board and the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine present a leadership and professional development symposium on Friday, May 13, at the Donna E. Shalala Student Center on the Coral Gables campus. The event is intended to inspire and empower minorities, women, University of Miami faculty and alumni to assume greater leadership roles and to increase their value to the organization. The symposium will also show how to strategically leverage abilities and talents for positive results in a diverse and inclusive environment.
Space is limited. Additional information and registration are available here.
UHealth — the University of Miami Health System will sponsor the final family day this spring at Lowe Art Museum on the University of Miami Coral Gables campus.
Spring into Color! Family Day
Sunday, May 15, noon to 3 p.m.
Families are invited to explore the works of Frank Stella, Roy Lichtenstein and many others in the Lowe’s permanent collection of contemporary and modern art. Learn about color and line as you create your own modern painting using masking tape and paint on canvas. Painting fun for the whole family!
Read more about Family Days »
UHealth – the University of Miami Health System and the College of Engineering will hold the first Neural Engineering Research Symposium on October 13, from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., in the auditorium of the Lois Pope LIFE Center. Neural engineering facilitates the development of new clinical technologies for the assessment of neurological function and the treatment of neurological diseases. The goals for the symposium are to energize fundamental aspects of neural science, engineering and reparative medicine, and facilitate collaborations across various disciplines. Featured speakers will be Jonathan Wolpaw, M.D., Director of the National Center for Adaptive Neurotechnologies, and Justin Sanchez, Ph.D., Acting Deputy Director of the Biological Technologies Office at Darpa. You are invited to be part of this event. To submit an abstract for presentation, click here. The deadline for submissions is August 20.
Registration is open for Synergy 2016, a multidisciplinary approach to interventional oncology, being held November 3-6 at the Eden Roc Miami Beach. The international conference has now been endorsed by the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the world’s leading professional organization for physicians and oncology professionals caring for people with cancer. Synergy 2016 will feature extended ablation and embolization workshops, world-renowned speakers from multiple disciplines, and the latest developments in medical, interventional and surgical therapeutic options.
More information, including the complete agenda, is available here. To register, click here.
The University of Miami’s 50th Miami Winter Symposium — “Diabetes: Today’s Research, Tomorrow’s Therapies” — will take place January 22-25, 2017, at the Hyatt Regency Miami. The annual event highlights advances in scientific discovery and brings together hundreds of researchers from the academic and industrial worlds.
Reduced registration fees are available at www.miamiwintersymposium.com for all University of Miami faculty, staff and students by entering the Miami registration portal. Fee waivers will be available to UMMSM personnel at the same portal, with preference given to those presenting posters — one waiver per poster. Applications will be dealt with in the order received. The abstract submission deadline is November 7, 2016.
The Calder Library Patron Satisfaction Survey is now available for all on-site and virtual users of the Medical Library at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. Please complete this brief survey so we can identify your priorities and preferences. The more information you provide, the better the Library can serve you! You can access the survey here.
Our schedule has changed. e-Update is now published twice a month, on the first and third Tuesday of each month. The next issue will be Tuesday, May 17. The deadline for submissions will be the prior Wednesday, May 11, at noon.