September is a time that we celebrate Women in Medicine Month. This is a time to recognize the growing number of women in medicine, celebrate their many accomplishments, and recognize and acknowledge the countless women who have transformed science and medicine. I would urge you to read a fantastic blog post by a former UVA undergraduate, Belle Pace, which is found on the AAMC website Belle’s post celebrates the rich history of women in medicine but also highlights how stereotypes and biases continue to marginalize the contributions of so many.
Within this Department of Medicine, we have many examples of women who are national and international field leaders. This includes (and certainly not limited to (and forgive me for not including everyone): Dr. Coleen McNamara whose lab utilizes precision medicine to unravel the role of the immune system in cardiovascular disease; Dr. Hannah Mannem who leads a world-class lung transplant program; Dr. Monica Lawrence who has developed a regional center for the care of complex patients with immunodeficiencies; Dr. Sue Brown who is developing treatment options for type 1 diabetes with a focus on automated insulin delivery systems; Dr. Jeanetta Frye who leads a regional program on gastrointestinal motility disorders; Dr. Leslie Blackhall who is a national leader in the field of palliative care; Dr. Fran Garrett-Bakelman who studies epigenetics of leukemia; Dr. Stacey Burgess whose work has led to greater understanding of the link between intestinal exposures and the immune system; Dr. Sana Khan who directs one of the most extensive peritoneal dialysis programs in the mid-Atlantic and Dr. Jae Hee Yun who has been recognized for her educational excellence in Rheumatology. Please join me in celebrating the careers of our women in medicine.
To also create a space for discussion around gender issues in medicine, we will also have a special event on September 27th from noon to 1 p.m. with Dr. Susan Kirk, Associate Professor of Medicine and Former Associate Dean for Graduate Medical Education. Dr. Kirk will share her experiences during her esteemed career in medicine and also host an open discussion on continued issues that must be addressed to ensure equality. Please join us for this important meeting.
Lastly, please enjoy this edition of Medicine Matters, which highlights the Division of Rheumatology, led by Dr. Janet Lewis. Under Dr. Lewis’s leadership, the Division continues to grow and has become a regional leader in the care of complex patients with autoimmune disorders. Their excellence is evident! They also have a lot of pets. I have to admit to a particular fondness for Twixie and Max.
With best wishes,
Mitchell H. Rosner, MD, MACP
Henry B. Mulholland Professor of Medicine
Chair, Department of Medicine