e-Update: News for University of Miami Miller School of Medicine Faculty and Staff

Up Front

From left, Stuart Sacks, Simran Shah, Emily Grass, UM President Julio Frenk, Sam Cass, Amar Arunachalam and Karam Alawa.

From left, Stuart Sacks, Simran Shah, Emily Grass, UM President Julio Frenk, Sam Cass, Amar Arunachalam and Karam Alawa.

Liberty City Health Fair Brings Free Screening Services to Miami Community

Betty Hamilton came to the Liberty City Health Fair on Saturday for a variety of free screening services. “I want to stay on top of my health, and this is a great way to get a checkup,” she said. Gladys Dulcio and her three children walked several blocks to Holmes Elementary School for the day-long event, organized by the student-run Mitchell Wolfson Sr. Department of Community Service (DOCS) at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

Hamilton and Dulcio were among more than 200 residents of the underserved Miami community who took advantage of DOCS’ sixth annual health fair to receive screenings for hypertension, diabetes, vision loss, and colon, breast, cervical and skin cancers. About 150 Miller School students conducted the screenings, supported by faculty, Miami-Dade County Public School administrators and the Miller School’s community partners.

University of Miami President Julio Frenk and Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D., Dean of the Miller School, both attended the health fair.

Read more about the DOCS health fair »

More News

Felicia Knaul, Ph.D., with Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D.

Felicia Knaul, Ph.D., with Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D.

American Medical Women’s Association Honors Dean Pascal J. Goldschmidt, Dr. Felicia Knaul

Two University of Miami leaders were honored with “Local Hero” awards from the American Medical Women’s Association (AMWA) on Friday, March 11.

Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D., Dean of the Miller School, received the award for his longstanding commitment to creating career opportunities for women in medicine, and Felicia Knaul, Ph.D., professor of public health sciences and Director of the Miami Institute for the Americas, was recognized for championing the health of women and their families.

Read more about the AMWA awards »

From left, Nick and Marc Buoniconti with Christian Slater.

From left, Nick and Marc Buoniconti with Christian Slater.

Destination Fashion 2016 Raises Millions for The Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis

The Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis, the fundraising arm of The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, celebrated its 30th anniversary in high style at Destination Fashion 2016, presented by Swanee and Paul DiMare. The event treated more than 2,500 friends and supporters to a star-studded extravaganza highlighted by a concert headlined by “Mr. Worldwide,” the global music icon Pitbull, and the Italian luxury brand Brunello Cucinelli showcasing the company’s Spring 2016 Collection thanks to Neiman Marcus Bal Harbour.

Destination Fashion 2016 at Bal Harbour Shops was emceed by Savannah Guthrie, the co-anchor of NBC’s Today Show. Honorary Co-Chairs were Grammy Award Winners Gloria and Emilio Estefan, Academy Award Winner Tommy Lee Jones and wife Dawn Jones, and Golden Globe Winner Christian Slater and wife Brittany Slater. They joined a who’s who of celebrities, philanthropic icons, business leaders, fashionistas and other South Florida notables at the main event.

Read more about Destination Fashion 2016 »

Victor T. Curtin, M.D.

Victor T. Curtin, M.D.

Dr. Victor T. Curtin, Renowned Ophthalmologist and Bascom Palmer Professor for 57 Years, Passes Away

Victor T. Curtin, M.D., professor emeritus of ophthalmology at Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, passed away Wednesday, March 9, in Miami. Admired throughout the world, Curtin was the first faculty member recruited to Bascom Palmer Eye Institute at the University of Miami School of Medicine, where he served on its faculty for 57 years.

The son of Dr. and Mrs. Victor A. Curtin, Curtin was born in Lawrence, Massachusetts, in 1925. A graduate of the Phillips Academy Andover, Curtin received an undergraduate degree from Harvard College and was then stationed in Japan with the United States Army Medical Corps. Following his service, he received dental and medical degrees from Harvard Medical School. He interned at the San Francisco County Hospital and in 1958 completed a residency in ophthalmology at Cornell University Medical College, where he met Edward W.D. Norton, M.D., and developed an interest in retinal diseases and ophthalmic pathology.

Read more about Dr. Curtin's career »

Miller School students and school leadership at the Medical Education Donors and Scholars Luncheon.

Miller School students and school leadership at the Medical Education Donors and Scholars Luncheon.

Annual Luncheon Brings Donors and Scholars Together

Rupa Prasad knew she wanted to attend the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, but it was a critical financial component that ultimately helped her make it happen.

The fourth year Miller School medical student, who is pursuing a career in anesthesiology, says her education might not have been possible if not for the funding she received as a Paul J. DiMare Medical Scholarship recipient.

Prasad, who is graduating in May with the Class of 2016, spoke at the Medical Education Donors and Scholars Luncheon, which was held March 5 on the Schoninger Research Quadrangle to bring together grateful students with alumni and major donors of Miller School scholarships.

Read more about the Donors and Scholars Luncheon »

From left, Alberto A. Mitrani, M.D.’84, Lori Laffel, M.D. ’80, M.P.H., Maria Victoria Egusquiza, M.D. ’87, and Laurence B. Gardner, M.D.

View Photo Gallery »

From left, Alberto A. Mitrani, M.D.’84, Lori Laffel, M.D. ’80, M.P.H., Maria Victoria Egusquiza, M.D. ’87, and Laurence B. Gardner, M.D.

Alumni Reception and Reunion Banquet Highlight Medical Alumni Weekend

Miller School alumni from around the country had the opportunity to reconnect and reminisce March 5 at the annual Alumni Reception and Reunion Banquet, the crowning event of one of the Miller School’s most eagerly anticipated weekends.

Medical Alumni Weekend is a yearly celebration that brings former classmates back to campus to celebrate the Miller School through activities, traditions, and continuing education courses. It also marked many milestone anniversaries for past classes, including the classes of 1956, 1961, 1966, 1971, 1976, 1981, 1986, 1991, 1996, 2001 and 2006.

Read more about Medical Alumni Weekend »

Taghrid Asfar, M.D., M.S.P.H., and David J. Lee, Ph.D.

Taghrid Asfar, M.D., M.S.P.H., and David J. Lee, Ph.D.

Researchers to Launch Innovative Smoking Cessation Program for Hispanic Construction Workers

A team of researchers at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Department of Public Health Sciences at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine is preparing to launch an innovative smoking cessation intervention program for Hispanic construction workers.

“This occupational group is at high risk of smoking-related health and occupational hazards,” said Taghrid Asfar, M.D., M.S.P.H., who is a co-investigator in the initiative. “But smoking cessation efforts have been hindered by several factors, including high workplace mobility, limited access to health promotion services, and lack of culturally sensitive interventions tailored to their work/life circumstances.”

Read more about the smoking cessation program »

Juan Viles-Gonzalez, M.D.

Juan Viles-Gonzalez, M.D.

National Study Finds Fewer Complications from Cardiac Ablation Procedure at High-Volume Facilities

Atrial flutter (AFL) ablation therapy is a growing front-line treatment for patients with certain types of irregular heartbeats or arrhythmias. However, a national study of nearly 90,000 procedures found that high-volume facilities have a lower rate of complications, according to Juan Viles-Gonzalez, M.D., assistant professor of cardiology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

“While AFL ablation has been safely performed over the past decades, this study underscores the importance of physician and facility experience for better patient safety and outcomes,” said Viles-Gonzalez. “A multidisciplinary approach involving electrophysiologists, nurses and technicians, in an environment with appropriate training of the supporting staff for management of complications associated with ablation, also appears to be important.”

Read more about the research findings »

Denise C. Vidot, Ph.D.

Denise C. Vidot, Ph.D.

University of Miami Study Finds Young Hispanic Marijuana Users Have Lower Odds of Metabolic Syndrome

Hispanic/Latino marijuana users between the ages of 20 and 30 have significantly lower odds of metabolic syndrome than Hispanic/Latino non-users, according to a recent study by researchers with the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine Department of Public Health Sciences and Department of Psychology. Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of risk factors, including high blood pressure, blood sugar, abdominal fat, and unhealthy triglycerides and HDL cholesterol levels linked to increased risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

“These findings have health implications as marijuana use becomes more accepted and we simultaneously face multiple epidemics of obesity, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes,” said lead study author Denise C. Vidot, Ph.D., a post-doctoral fellow working with UM’s Department of Public Health Sciences and Behavioral Medicine Research Center. “As marijuana use becomes legal in more states, it is important to understand both the health risks and benefits of this substance.”

Read more about the research findings »

From left, Fred F. Telischi, M.D., M.E.E., Michael Douglas, M.A., and Lynn W. Miskiel.

From left, Fred F. Telischi, M.D., M.E.E., Michael Douglas, M.A., and Lynn W. Miskiel.

Miller School Hosts Medical Issues and the Growing Child Conference

The University of Miami Miller School of Medicine Departments of Otolaryngology and Pediatrics recently hosted the Medical Issues and the Growing Child Conference at the Mailman Center for Child Development. This year’s conference topic was Bilingual Learners: Assessment and Intervention for Children who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing.

The conference opened with a keynote speech by UHealth Otolaryngology Chairman Fred F. Telischi, M.D. The floor was then turned over to guest speaker Michael Douglas, M.A., Principal of the Mama Lere Hearing School in the Bill Wilkerson Center at Vanderbilt University, who spoke on advanced hearing technology and how early identification and intervention have greatly changed the way we teach children who are deaf or hard of hearing. His workshop also demonstrated how auditory-based bilingualism can be facilitated in children with all degrees of hearing loss and that children with significant hearing loss can be bilingual regardless of their educational landscape.

Read more about the conference »

David Seo, M.D., and Dawn Cram.

David Seo, M.D., and Dawn Cram.

UMIT Health Care Information Leaders Present at 2016 HIMSS Conference

Leaders of the University of Miami’s Information Technology division were among the nationally renowned speakers and thought leaders chosen to present at the 2016 HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society) Annual Conference and Exhibition in Las Vegas earlier this month.

David Seo, M.D., Associate Vice President of IT for Clinical Applications and Chief Medical Informatics Officer for UHealth – the University of Miami Health System, co-presented the educational session, “Predictive Analytics Drives Population Health Management.” Dawn Cram, Manager of Application Systems Development – Enterprise Imaging, presented “Encounters-Based Photographic Imaging in Healthcare.”

Read more about the HIMSS conference »

David Richstone, M.B.A.

David Richstone, M.B.A.

David Richstone Elected Chair of Association of Healthcare Internal Auditors

David Richstone, Audit Director for Medical Audits in the Office of Audit and Advisory Services, has been elected Chair of the Association of Healthcare Internal Auditors (AHIA).

AHIA, with 1,595 members nationwide, is the premier professional association for health care internal auditors. Richstone has served on its Board of Directors for the past two years.

Read more about David Richstone's election »

Nanette Vega, M.A.

Nanette Vega, M.A.

Nanette Vega Recognized for Outstanding Contributions to Multicultural Education

Nanette Vega, M.A., Executive Director of Programs for the Office of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, was recognized for her contributions to ACPA: College Student Educators International at the organization’s annual convention in Montreal on March 8.

Vega received two awards – the ACPA Coalition of Multicultural Affairs (CMA) Achievement Award for Outstanding Contributions to Multicultural Education and the ACPA Latin@ Network CASA: Community Advancement and Service Award for significant contributions made to the Latin@ community.

Read more about Nanette Vega's awards »

***Notice: Schedule Change for e-Update Newsletter***

Beginning in April, the frequency of e-Update will change from weekly to semimonthly (twice a month), with publication on the first and third Tuesday of each month. There will be no issue next Tuesday, March 29. The new semimonthly publication schedule will begin on Tuesday, April 5.

One result of this change is that grand rounds, guest lectures and other calendar items entered into 25Live will be published looking forward two or three weeks at a time, depending on the number of Tuesdays in the month, instead of the current one week. The deadline for submission of news stories will now be at noon on the Wednesday prior to each Tuesday the newsletter will be published.

We look forward to continuing to report the interesting, exciting and groundbreaking activities happening throughout the Miller School of Medicine and UHealth. Please continue to keep us informed by sending news to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Billing Compliance Alert: Special Audit Procedure Begins Today

A prepayment review audit for CPT codes 99215 (follow-up outpatient visit, high complexity), 99291 (critical care services first 30-74 minutes) and 99232 and 99233 (subsequent hospital visits moderate–high complexity) is being implemented for claims processed on or after March 15, by Florida’s Medicare carrier, First Coast Service Options.

In addition, a post-payment review audit for CPT code 99214 (follow-up outpatient visit, moderate complexity), is being implemented for claims processed on or after March 15.

Read more about new billing compliance audit procedures »

Call for Abstracts: Center on Aging Scientific Poster Session, April 11

The University of Miami Center on Aging will hold a scientific poster session on April 11 from 3 to 5 p.m. The Center is located at Jackson Behavioral Health Hospital, 1695 N.W. 9th Avenue, Suite 3208. All faculty interested in research related to aging are invited to participate.

Those wishing to present a poster must first email a one-page abstract (limit 250 words) describing their work in aging to Adrienne Jaret at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) by Friday, March 18.

Read more about the poster session »

Brain Bank Awareness Clinic, March 18

Brain Awareness Week, March 14-20, is being celebrated across the medical campus with a Brain Fair and other events. The Department of Neurology will highlight the need for brain donation with a special clinic on Friday, March 18 from 9 to 11:30 a.m. and 1 to 4 p.m. Patients and staff are invited to visit the ALS Multidisciplinary Clinic, located in Room 609 of the Professional Arts Center, to learn more about donation and the work of the Brain Bank. For more information, call Ginna Gonzalez, D.N.P., at 305-243-7400 or click here.

Register for Zika Forum: State of the Science, Public Health Safety and Ethics, March 23

The Miller School of Medicine, the Division of Infectious Diseases, the Department of Public Health Sciences and UHealth – the University of Miami Health System will present Zika Forum: State of the Science, Public Health Safety and Ethics, on Wednesday, March 23, from 1 to 5 p.m., at the Donna E. Shalala Student Center, 1330 Miller Drive, on the University of Miami Coral Gables campus. Miller School and other local and international experts in vector control, infectious diseases, public health, neurology, virology and bioethics will be there to discuss the state of the science, medical implications, public health concerns and ethical challenges of the Zika virus.

The Forum is presented in partnership with University of Miami Miller School of Medicine Institute for Bioethics and Health Policy, Institute of AIDS and Emerging Infectious Diseases, International Medicine Institute, University of Miami Clinical and Translational Science Institute, and the Florida Department of Health in Miami-Dade.

Read more about the Zika Forum »

The Business of Health Care: Going Global Conference, March 21

UM President Julio Frenk will headline a trio of keynote speakers at The Business of Health Care: Going Global, the fifth in a series of health industry impact conferences hosted by the Center for Health Sector Management and Policy and the University of Miami School of Business Administration, on Monday, March 21.

Health care is an increasingly global commodity. Multinational health care service providers, biomedical and biotechnology industries, multi-country joint ventures, medical tourism and the promise of advances in technology, are but a sample of the globalization of the business of health care. This conference promises to offer an unparalleled opportunity for the exchange of ideas on the importance of thinking globally about the business of health care and the impact on the business community in general.

Read more about the conference »

Ernesto Bernal-Mizrachi, M.D.

Ernesto Bernal-Mizrachi, M.D.

First Diabetes Summit, April 5-6

The Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Diabetes and the Diabetes Research Institute will host the First Diabetes Summit on April 5-6 on the Medical Campus. The purpose of the Summit is to bring together the diabetes research community across the University of Miami actively working in different areas of basic, clinical, bioinfomatics, health services and outcomes diabetes research. A main goal for this meeting is to stimulate innovative research and scholarship. At the same time, the meeting will serve as a platform to assess the landscape of diabetes research and identify faculty for future DRC and T32 applications. For more information please contact Ernesto Bernal-Mizrachi, M.D., at 305-243-5631 or e-mail .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

2016 OHRP Research Community Forum, April 6-7

Come learn the latest in 21st Century Research: What You Need to Know About Vulnerable Populations, Emerging Designs, Technology and More.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Human Research Protections, the CITI Program, the University of Miami Human Subject Research Office, the University of Miami Clinical and Translational Science Institute, Miami Children’s Research Institute, Baptist Health South Florida, Nova Southeastern University and the University of South Florida invite you to attend this informative and dynamic two-day event April 6-7 at the Miami Marriott Biscayne Bay Hotel. Learn more and register for RCF 2016: http://www.rcfmia.org

For more information, contact Adiper Bellow (305) 243-0244 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

12th Annual CFAR HIV Symposium, April 8

The 12th Annual CFAR HIV Symposium will be held Friday, April 8, from 7:45 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the BankUnited Center, 1245 Dauer Drive in Coral Gables. The symposium will bring together researchers and clinicians for a day of presentations by experts from around the country on HIV/AIDS. The goal is to educate infectious disease physicians (specifically HIV specialists), researchers and others involved in the field of HIV/AIDS.

This event is sponsored by the Miami Center for AIDS Research (CFAR), the UM HIV/AIDS Institute, the South FL SE AIDS Education and Training Center, and the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. The cost is $25 for UM faculty and staff; there is no charge for students, fellows and residents. Additional information and registration are available here.

Join the Cystic Fibrosis Great Strides Walk, April 17

UHealth Pulmonology invites everyone to join the Cystic Fibrosis Great Strides Walk that will take place on historic Virginia Key Beach on Key Biscayne on April 17. Each year, the UM Pulmonology Team saves lives through treatment and research, and they are asking for your help to raise money for an amazing cause. Come out with friends and family for a 5K walk, beach party, live music, car show, kids’ activities and plenty of food. To join the walk and help raise money, you can register here.

For more information contact Sherri Kelly at 305-243-1680.

Registration Ends Tomorrow for the 2016 Corporate Run/Walk, April 28

Grab your running shoes, boost your stamina and manifest your UM spirit because the 2016 Mercedes Benz Corporate Run is coming! The Corporate Run/Walk is one of the nation’s largest 5K (3.1 miles) races and takes place at Bayfront Park in Downtown Miami on Thursday, April 28. Last year, Team UM had our largest team ever and the second largest team overall with just over 1,450 participants.

Registration is open here. Be sure to sign up for the city’s largest office party and get ready to experience a night of exercise, food, entertainment and prizes.

Read more about the 2016 Corporate Run/Walk »

Women and Minority Leadership and Professional Development Symposium, May 13

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.