Highlights: December MAC Meeting

Opening Comments from the Dean
David S. Wilkes, MD

  • Implications of HR 1, Tax Cut and Jobs Act, on Graduate Student Stipends
    • Negative impact upon our students, UVA, and nation
      • College will be less affordable
      • Discourages participation in higher education
      • Discourages employer investment in employee learning
      • Decreases US competitiveness
      • Brightest minds will go outside of the US to advance
    • Elimination of Section 117(d) provisions
      • Devastating to research programs
      • No longer able to provide tax-free tuition for graduate students
        • Example: stipend of $24K and tuition waiver of $29K – student’s tax bill triples to $4,920
      • Erodes progress made in developing strong interest in STEM programs
        • Puts STEM education out of the reach of many students
      • Our legislators
      • Themes of Incoming UVA President Ryan
        • Community: opportunity to interact with and learn from a broadly diverse group of students, faculty, staff
        • Discovery: new knowledge that solves problems, leads to practical application, and brings new perspective to enduring questions
        • Service: public universities serve the public, starting with their own states
      • New Strategic Hire: Ken Walsh, PhD. Professor of CV Medicine and Director, Whitaker CV Institute, at Boston University SOM. Starts January 25, 2018. $.9M year one, $3.5M over five years.

Overview of Equal Opportunity & Civil Rights Policies and Reporting Options
Catherine Spear, AVP Equal Opportunity & Civil Rights
Emily Babb, AVP for Title IX Compliance & Title IX Coordinator

  • Presentation addressed:
    • Notice of non-discrimination and equal opportunity
    • Policy of Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment and Other Forms of Interpersonal Violence (Title IX Policy)
    • Preventing and Addressing Discrimination and Harassment (PADH Policy) and Preventing and Addressing Retaliation (PAR Policy)
    • Why reporting is important
    • How to report prohibited conduct under these policies
    • How to address prohibited conduct
  • See presentation.

December Health System Board Update
A. Bobby Chhabra, MD, Chair of Orthopaedic Surgery

  • Dr. Chhabra shared highlights from the December 6, 2017, HSB meeting. The HS goals dashboard showed notable improvement in solid organ and bone marrow transplants and addition investments by Seed & Venture Funds, moving these two indicators to green. All other categories are yellow.
  • FY18 first-quarter financial results were shared.

The next meeting will be Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018, in the BIMS Classroom.

It’s Time for You to THRIV

THRIV’s inaugural class of scholars: (l-r) Dustin Walters, MD; Jessica Keim-Malpass, PhD, RN; Kathleen McManus, MD, MS; Brynne Sullivan, MD; and Kyle J. Lampe, PhD.

The Translational Health Research Institute of Virginia (THRIV) program has announced a new call for proposals for mentored career development awards for junior faculty at UVA who are pursuing a career in clinical or translational research.

THRIV is a transformational cross-Grounds collaboration that leverages the latest advances in data science to accelerate innovation in health-related research and facilitate team science. THRIV seeks to support highly qualified junior faculty for activities related to the development of a successful clinical research or translational research career.

The first group of scholars came from three different schools across Grounds — the School of Nursing, the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, and the School of Medicine — and I am excited see that applications are now open for the next group of promising scientists.

The THRIV Scholar Career Development Program aims to train the next generation of translational researchers in principles of data science, the conduct of rigorous and reproducible science, and to promote team science as a means to enhance innovation and discovery in health-related research. The program provides up to 75% salary/fringe support for up to 2 years for Scholars in addition to funding for research-related expenses and training.

For details visit THRIV’s website, or contact Sandra Burks.

Margaret A. Shupnik, PhD
Gerald D. Aurbach Professor of Endocrinology
Professor of Medicine
Senior Associate Dean for Research

Faculty: Do You Know about This Professional Development Opportunity?

Committed to Excellence: (l-r) Christine M. Peterson, MD; Kenneth C. Bilchick, MD; Maryellen E. Gusic, MD; Ann L. Kellams, MD; P. Preston Reynolds, MD, PhD; Sukumar Sarkar, PhD; and Guillermo E. Solorzano, MD

Since the inception of its Certificate of Commitment to Excellence in Teaching series in 2012, the School of Medicine has offered professional development for faculty, fellows and residents, as well as students and staff who want to advance their skills as teachers and/or pursue scholarly work in education.

This program series is offered by the Office of Medical Education in conjunction with the Academy of Distinguished Educators. Opportunities include Medical Education Grand Rounds — lunchtime programs presented by nationally and internationally acclaimed experts in medical education — multiple afternoon sessions presented by UVA SOM faculty on various topics in education, and a monthly lunchtime Journal Club. Most are highly interactive sessions during which participants learn together and exchange ideas to enhance both teaching and learning.

This year’s series covers a range of topics of interest to those who teach in the classroom and in clinical settings. Topics include Providing Effective Feedback, Professional Identity Formation, Remediating the Learner in Need, Entrustable Professional Activities, and a research series. At the suggestions of our faculty, the content addresses learner assessment, curriculum development, advising and mentoring learning, and using a scholarly approach in educational leadership roles. The sessions are supplemented by a monthly journal club for participants to engage in a facilitated discussion of articles from the literature that address a broad variety of topics of interest.

In addition to receiving CME credit, anyone who attends 10 or more of these sessions over a two-year period receives a certificate acknowledging their commitment to professional development in education. To date, over 60 individuals have earned a certificate.

The topics presented are designed to help educators who teach across the continuum — medical student teaching, resident and fellow teaching, and peer/faculty development — and support participants in developing scholarly work and scholarship in education. The sessions provide an environment in which educators can get together to build skills and develop relationships.

We will build on the successes of past programming to meet the needs of those who are interested in biomedical and health sciences education. We welcome additional colleagues to lead and facilitate sessions in the Certificate series and for the Journal Club.

R.J. Canterbury, MD, MS, DLFAPA
Wilford W. Spradlin Professor
Senior Associate Dean for Education

New Chairs Receive Standardized Onboarding

With the arrival of several new chairs this year — Dr. Park (Otolaryngology), Dr. Saavedra (Dermatology), Dr. Zeiger (Surgery), Dr. Gampper (Plastic and Maxillofacial Surgery), Dr. Hoard (Dentistry), Dr. Goodkin (Neurology) and myself (interim in Family Medicine) — the Dean’s Office has implemented a new onboarding process.

Each chair meets regularly with Dean Wilkes and me during their first three months. These meetings are essential in orienting chairs to their new role and the institution itself. They also provide an opportunity for regular check-ins and for us to develop a strong partnership with these new leaders. We offer advice on strategies for success and point out pitfalls to avoid, and connect the new chair with stakeholders within the Health System and across Grounds.

We also hold three monthly, half-day sessions for the new chairs and their administrators with focused topics such as clinical affairs, the education and research missions, finances and budgeting, promotion and tenure, faculty development, and HR-related items (recruitment, hiring, annual reviews, employee relations).

Why Standardize the Onboarding for Chairs?
We’re doing this for two reasons. The first is that we want the chairs to have a formal path to connect early with colleagues and to develop relationships with those with whom they’ll be working as department chairs. This onboarding fosters that network creation. The second is that departmental leadership is a demanding role essential to the success of the medical school. We want to offer the new chairs quick access to the information they need to get acclimated to their new role. “What do I need to know about the department’s finances, or the physical environment, or my responsibilities or …?” We help chairs answer those questions before they become issues.

A better-prepared chair — one who understands their responsibilities and establishes a strong, professional network within the Health System — will be able to better support the development and advancement of faculty as well as lead the department to advance the education, clinical, and research missions.

Thank you to Troy Buer, PhD, and Ashley Ayers who were crucial in launching this initiative.

For more information on department chair leadership, visit the Faculty Affairs and Development site.

Susan M. Pollart, MD, MS
Ruth E. Murdaugh Professor and Chair (interim) of Family Medicine
Senior Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Faculty Development

Highlights: November MAC Meeting

Opening Comments from the Dean David S. Wilkes, MD

  • We learned a number of lessons from the DARs/CARs.
    • Accountability is key across all missions.
      • In education, we must ensure that students are prepared to perform the Entrustable Professional Activities.
      • In research, we must diversify the funding portfolios, maintain the standards for research funding per square foot of lab space, and maximize salary support on grants.
      • In the clinics, we must improve efficiencies across the board in the ambulatory setting and we must establish a group practice.
    • The reviews highlighted several priorities.
      • As leaders, we are all responsible for working together and guiding institutional change.
      • We must improve organizational structures and processes. In the dean’s office, we are doing this through developing business intelligence, improving IT infrastructure, and piloting the Be Smart initiative (lean processes).
      • We must build and strengthen external relationship across the University, through the Inova partnership, and through the CTSA initiative.
      • We will take education to a higher level through innovations in our graduate and master’s programs.
    • One of the programs we learned about in the DARs is the Silo Busters program in the Child Health Research Center (CHRC) in the Department of Pediatrics. James Nataro described Silo Busters for us.
      • The program is designed to facilitate interactions with basic scientists. Eligible basic scientists who will be working with Pediatrics faculty members are given joint appointments in the CHRC.
      • The research may be conducted in the lab of either the primary or the secondary appointee.
      • The objective is to attract basic scientists to work with clinicians.
      • The first Silo Buster recipients will be announced before the end of this year.

Bobby Chhabra, MD
The Department of Orthopedics’ clinical trials have grown from 4 trials in 2013 to more than 60 today. Over the last year, the clinical trials infrastructure has been fully supported by the overhead negotiated through the industry “rate card” mechanism.

Dr. Chhabra explained the methodology for developing the cost expectations for the rate card. It takes into account salary expenses (investigator and trial support staff) and OTPS. Billing may be based on an hourly rate or on trial enrollment and other milestones.

The rate card provides a process that is more streamlined and transparent for the budgeting process. It makes is easier for industry to set up trials. It provides salary support for MDs and PAs. The rate card helps to ensure that clinical revenues do not support the expenses of clinical trials.

Mentoring Program Continues to Develop Junior Faculty

The Junior Faculty Development Program (JFDP) is off and running again! In case you’re not familiar with the program, it launched in the fall of 2016 and provides networking, social opportunities, and peer mentoring among colleagues who are at a similar stage in their career. It promotes the development and advancement of junior faculty through seminars and mentored scholarly projects, and facilitates mentoring relationships between senior and junior faculty.

This year’s group, composed of 17 participants from 9 clinical departments, meets every other week to discuss a broad range of topics needed for career success in academic medicine. These topics cover a range of areas, including education, research, leadership, communication, and publication. Recent examples are:

  • Applying a scholarly approach to the work you do with learners
  • Designing a Research or Quality Project
  • Professional Decision Making and the Professional Development Plan
  • Grant Writing & the Specific Aims Page
  • Promotion and Tenure
  • Social Media and Reputation Management
  • Writing for Publication and Scholarly Dissemination

While the current cohort does not represent every department, I want to stress that this program is open to all clinical and basic science faculty.

Each participant in the JFDP works on a scholarly project over the course of the program and has access to a mentor who will answer questions, provide resources, and assist in their growth. This year’s projects cover a wide range of topics. Here is a sample of efforts underway by our junior faculty:

  • “Mechanistic evaluation of biointegration of acellular dermal matrix products”
  • “Identification of low-risk patients with mild complicated brain injury”
  • “Identifying and maximizing resident learning style”
  • “The effects of transition from a specialty-based primary to consultative hospital service: Impact on patients, caregivers, and medical providers”
  • “The perioperative surgical home: Taking the third-year medical student clerkship beyond the operating room”
  • “Improving access to kidney transplant for Hispanic minorities in the state of Virginia”

The JFDP started in October and runs until next April, with the final two meetings focusing on the faculty project presentations, where participants will share project outcomes and their progress to date. I am particularly looking forward to these sessions.

If you’re interested in the JFDP (or know someone who is), the call for applications for fall 2018 will go out in the spring. Keep an eye on your email and this space for updates.

Thank you to the departmental mentors for helping develop our junior faculty and to Troy Buer, PhD; Ashley Ayers; Jennifer Aminuddin; and Alice Keys for providing logistical and operational support. The program would not be successful without their hard work.

Susan M. Pollart, MD, MS
Ruth E. Murdaugh Professor and Chair (interim) of Family Medicine
Senior Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Faculty Development

VMED: Making Teaching and Learning Simpler

Making Virginia Medicine Better: (l-r) Dr. Megan Bray, Dr. Mary Kate Worden, Kim Holman, Dr. Maryellen Gusic, Robert Pastor, Dr. Randolph Canterbury, and Mark Moody.

Technology is supposed to make our lives easier and allow us to work faster or smarter; but it has to be the right technology, employed correctly. Too often we find some tech to be “good enough” and try to make it suit our needs. “Good enough” causes us to create Band-Aid solutions and workarounds which can translate to extra work and frustration. Over the years, the School of Medicine has been using a patchwork quilt of commercial and custom educational programs and software, added and modified where needed. We’re getting rid of them for something better.

The School of Medicine is in the process of building VMED, which stands for Virginia Medicine. This is an integrated learning-, curriculum-, and student-management system that is being designed with the specific needs of UVA in mind. We want to provide a seamless experience for students, faculty, and administration. With a system of our own design, we can build it to meet our needs instead of trying to muscle through the constraints of commercial software.

To build VMED, we started with the foundation of the UME NxGen Curriclum, the UVA 12 Competencies for the Contemporary Physician, which are our education program objectives for the MD degree. These competencies drive our educational activities and assessments, and VMED underpins those learning objectives and those, in turn, support our student management, online content delivery, assessments, gradebook, program evaluation, and much more. All of this assists us with our AAMC and LCME reporting and predictive analytics regarding our students’ USMLE performance. VMED, built from the ground up, also provides us with longitudinal data not only to assess our student performance but also provides us with program evaluation data necessary for continuous quality improvement

In simplest terms, we are replacing critical components in the student information system and think it will be a huge improvement for all. Student Source, Oasis, X-Credit, and Faculty Toolbox are a few of the current applications that are being replaced.

The largest pieces of VMED include:

  • the online testing system — Three classes of students are now using this.
  • a clinical assessment tool for undergraduate medical education — iCAN, which stands for Interactive Clinical Assessment Navigator, is the tool we use for assessing entrustable professional activities (EPA).
  • a learning management system for students — A home for resources, schedules, enrollment, and gradebook.
  • evaluations — Student-to-student, student-to-faculty, and student-to-course.
  • mapping of the curriculum — mapping to the physician competencies, which speaks to our accreditation as a medical school.

Most medical schools are using commercial products or open-source tools to deliver their curriculum to students and to map it for accreditation purposes. We’ll be joining a small community that is developing software from scratch. We’re moving forward with this because of the successes we’ve had with the new testing system and EPA programs — they are proof that we have the resources and the talent in the School of Medicine to build something that will suit our specific needs.

What Does This Mean for You?
We’re working on VMED now. Some modules have been piloted, but we’re also gathering requirements for future modules. The initial release of the learning management system will roll out in August 2018 with iterative releases to come in the months and years to follow.

Faculty who are teaching in the classroom or in the clinic have already seen some of these changes, particularly those using the assessment methodology for EPAs and those using the new online testing system. I hope that VMED will simplify teacher workflow for class preparation, approval of teaching materials, setting up exams, and reviewing student performance, and that it will offer faculty a clear view of how your work supports the physician competencies.

I would like to thank Dr. Megan Bray, Dr. Maryellen Gusic, Kim Holman, Mark Moody, Robert Pastor, Michael Szul, and Dr. Mary Kate Worden for their tireless efforts on VMED. It could not have happened without their hard work.

As more modules of VMED are ready for release, I’ll talk about them here. Stay tuned!

R.J. Canterbury, MD
Senior Associate Dean for Education
Wilford W. Spradlin Professor

Year 6: Excellence in Diversity Award

Dean David Wilkes

At times, I have to remind myself that some of our work is a marathon, not a sprint. But I find encouragement when I hear that, for the sixth year in a row, the University of Virginia School of Medicine has received the 2017 Health Professions Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award. Presented by INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, this national honor recognizes U.S. medical, dental, pharmacy, osteopathic, nursing, and allied health schools that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion.

To receive this award six years in a row reflects our School’s dedication and commitment to diversity and inclusion. This is a great team effort. Our faculty, staff, and students consistently keep our core institutional values of respecting everyone at the forefront of what they do.

Our diversity efforts include:

  • Summer Medical Leadership Program. This six-week summer academic enrichment program brings together 30 college undergraduates interested in medical careers who are from disadvantaged backgrounds and underrepresented groups in medicine. The main goal is to expose participants to the “real world of medicine” to prepare them not only for admission to medical school but to assume future leadership positions in the medical field.
  • Partnerships with local schools. The School of Medicine hosts a Poster Symposium each year at Charlottesville High School to introduce high-school students — and future healthcare workers — to medical research. As part of their projects, students visit the UVA Claude Moore Health Sciences Library and are mentored by UVA research scientists.
  • Committee on Women. The committee promotes opportunities for mentoring and leadership for women throughout the School of Medicine, including an annual award honoring a faculty member for their leadership efforts.
  • Latino Health Initiative. In partnership with groups across UVA and the Charlottesville area, members work to improve health literacy, outcomes and access to care for local Latino residents. Ongoing projects include biweekly cardiovascular disease screening and education sessions, as well as training and empowerment for Latino community health workers.

I commend our faculty and staff for being dedicated to such an important effort. Special thanks to Dr. Greg Townsend, Associate Dean for Diversity. Each department has designated a diversity facilitator, and Greg has been meeting regularly with these facilitators to implement and promote diversity efforts in all departments. While there is still much to be done in the realm of diversity and inclusion, I feel like we are making positive strides every day. For that, I thank you all.

The University of Virginia School of Medicine will be featured, along with 23 other recipients, in the December 2017 issue of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine. For more information on the 2017 Health Professions HEED Award, click here. For more information about the School’s diversity initiatives, click here.

David S. Wilkes, MD
Dean, UVA School of Medicine
James Carroll Flippin Professor of Medical Science

Pinn Hall Dedication: What a Great Day!

Before I arrived at UVA, a colleague of mine at the National Institutes of Health told me, “When you get to Virginia, you have to meet Vivian Pinn.” It was great advice. I’ve become friends with Dr. Pinn over the past two years and I’ll repeat that advice to you: If you have an opportunity to meet Dr. Pinn — jump at the chance. She is an outstanding scientist and an even better person.

There are many reasons I am excited to be here at UVA. But meeting Dr. Pinn and honoring her legacy by renaming a building in her honor, a building that will be dedicated to advancing science for the betterment of mankind is yet another reason.

We will soon be renovating Pinn Hall to create state-of-the-art research space to support today’s most talented and ambitious scientific leaders. This facility will incorporate the latest technologies to encourage productivity and scientific partnership among interdisciplinary teams. By using open and flexible lab modules and shared equipment, this renovation will increase our space efficiency by 25%. Ultimately, this promotes team science, which is what we need to stay competitive with other elite schools of medicine.

I recommend watching the below 40-minute video from the Sept. 13 dedication ceremony. Her accomplishments and perseverance are truly commendable and worthy of your time. Included are timestamps for ease of use.

  • 00:00 – 05:40 | Teresa Sullivan, President, University of Virginia
  • 05:50 – 09:56 | Frank “Rusty” Conner III, Rector, UVA Board of Visitors
  • 10:15 – 14:01 | Dr. L.D. Britt, UVA Board of Visitors
  • 14:07 – 15:05 | Dr. David Wilkes, Dean, UVA School of Medicine
  • 15:12 – 20:12 | Video: Dr. Francis Collins, Director, National Institutes of Health
  • 20:21 – 25:53 | Dr. David Wilkes, Dean, UVA School of Medicine
  • 26:08 – 40:40 | Dr. Vivian Pinn, Senior Scientist Emerita, NIH Fogarty International Center

Additionally, during Dr. Pinn’s visit to UVA, she participated in the Medical Center Hour entitled “Assuring Fair Access for All.” You can view that video here.

She is an inspiring speaker and I encourage you to take time to watch the video.

David S. Wilkes, MD
Dean, UVA School of Medicine
James Carroll Flippin Professor of Medical Science

 

P&T: SOM Promotes as Many Women as Men

This year, for the first time, the School of Medicine promoted as many women as men to the rank of full professor. This is not just important in our SOM, but for women across the country — and how we got here is a story worth telling.

Nationally, women tend to apply for advancement to full professor at a lower rate and on a longer timeline than their male colleagues. As of 2015, representation of women at the rank of full professor had remained static in our SOM for at least a decade at UVA, hovering around 50 professors, or 16 percent of all full professors. While we had the data, we did not know why — so, a few years ago, we started looking into this. We had conversations about barriers and obstacles, conducted qualitative studies, and formed focus groups with those who had (and had not yet) made the choice to advance.

It is wonderful to be able to report that during this process many more women decided to seek promotion to full professor. In addition, more women were hired at that rank. Currently, 68 women in the School of Medicine are at the rank of full professor. That’s up from 48 just two years ago and represents a 42 percent increase! This is a significant stride toward equity and justly rewarding our faculty for their hard work and dedication to the school.

Here is what a few of them had to say, in their own words:

Carol Manning, PhD
Vice Chair for Faculty Development, Director Memory Disorders Clinic, Professor of Neurology
I’m co-chair of the School of Medicine Committee on Women, and we are doing research to understand why women get caught at the associate level. In participating in this research, I realized that that’s where I was and it was important for me to move forward.

In the Committee on Women research, we’ve heard that women who advance have had mentors who said, “Not only can you do this, but you need to do this. You are ready.” I didn’t feel the need until I became uncomfortable with where I was, and I put my work forward to the departmental P&T committee and they told me I was ready and that I absolutely should do it. That push was what I needed.

Being a full professor means a lot more than I it thought it would. It feels really good; that I’m recognized for my work and accomplishments, that I’m a player at the table, that I’m a role model for other women in the School of Medicine. I feel like I’m in position where I can encourage other associate professors to do this, and can show junior faculty that women can — and should — be full professors.

Kathie L. Hullfish, MD
Professor, Departments OB/GYN and Urology; Associate Chief Medical Officer, Peri-operative Services
I decided to go up this past year because of several factors. First, I have sustained investigative productivity with peer-reviewed publications and presentations in my clinical field of excellence. Second, I maintain a national reputation. Third, I have documented educational and clinical excellence in the subspecialty that I was charged to create and grow here at UVA. Finally, I wanted my administrative and executive leadership service as the Associate Chief Medical Officer and Physician Service Line Lead for Periop to be judged and valued by my institutional peers.

Before starting the process, I had vetted the idea to pursue promotion with several national leaders and mentors who strongly encouraged me to apply. To me, being a full professor means that the breadth and depth of my contributions locally, regionally, and nationally are fully recognized and appreciated by the institution. 

Wendy Novicoff, PhD
Department of Public Health Sciences and Orthopaedic Surgery

I had stayed on schedule from associate to full professor, and I didn’t realize how unusual this was, because that was always part of my plan. In talking to my colleagues, it became clear that this was not the experience for many people, especially women.   

 When I was thinking about applying to become a full professor, I spoke with both of my chairs and to Dr. Pollart, and they all said, “It’s time.” I broached the idea with them and they were very supportive. While my situation is different, I do know a lot of people in this department and many departments, both male and female, who get to the associate professor-level, and say, “I’m not going to go any further.” I’ve been incredibly lucky to find great colleagues, and I have been able to be very productive in terms of presentations and publications.

I can’t even describe the great feeling of being able to tell people I’m a full professor. Especially around here, people know what that means. This is not something that is just handed to you – I earned it through a lot of hard work and dedication. Being the first female full professor in orthopaedic surgery in the history of this institution — I find that amazing. 

One of the concerns people have voiced, because so many women were promoted in this round, was that the criteria were changed. I know they were not. There was a huge push to help women at our school apply for advancement, and it worked. But I know the bar was not lowered. I know the women who were promoted this year, and we all absolutely deserved it.

Congratulations to all who were promoted this year. Encouraging women to apply for promotion is something the Office of Faculty Affairs and Development has been focusing on, and it is incredibly gratifying to see progress. Let’s make sure we keep an eye on the academic progress of all of our faculty members and assure each has the opportunity to achieve the richly deserved recognition for their contributions and excellence.

Susan M. Pollart, MD, MS
Ruth E. Murdaugh Professor of Family Medicine
Senior Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Faculty Development