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

Up Front

From left, Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D., Governor Rick Scott, Mario Stevenson, Ph.D., and Senator Rene Garcia.

From left, Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D., Governor Rick Scott, Mario Stevenson, Ph.D., and Senator Rene Garcia.

$1 Million Grant from State of Florida Will Support UM HIV/AIDS Research

Governor Rick Scott and Senator Rene Garcia visited the Miller School of Medicine Monday to present a check from the state of Florida for $1 million to advance HIV/AIDS research. The funding will help support ongoing AIDS research programs and extend the research capacity of UM’s Center for AIDS Research through synergistic collaborations with investigators at other institutions in South Florida. In addition, the funds will promote the creation of the University of Miami HIV/AIDS Institute, which will serve as the umbrella under which clinical, research and philanthropic activities at UM will be coordinated.

“For anyone who has ever worked in healthcare, every day you help somebody’s life,” said Scott, who was a hospital executive before entering politics. “Funding research to cure the horrible diseases that afflict our loved ones has to be one of our top priorities. One of the nice things to happen in our state in the last four years is that we have turned our economy around. So as our economy gets better, we have more money in the budget, and we can do more things. Healthcare is clearly one of them. We must work together to treat these complex diseases, which require much more research and development.”

Read more about the research funding »

More News

University of Miami Leads Out of the Darkness Walk

To increase awareness and prevention of suicide, 900 walkers united on the Coral Gables campus September 21 for the Out of the Darkness Community Walk, sponsored by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

Leading the walkers were Charles B. Nemeroff, M.D., Ph.D., Miller Professor and Chair of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D., Senior Vice President for Medical Affairs and Dean of the Miller School and CEO of UHealth.

One of many held around the country to raise awareness of suicide, which is among the top ten causes of death in the United States, the walk raised more than $54,000 – a 33 percent increase from last year.

From left, Gary Evoniuk, Ph.D., Cynthia Kuhn, Ph.D., Tiffany Field, Ph.D., and Katie Eimers, who accepted the award on behalf of her late grandfather, Saul Schanberg, M.D., Ph.D.

From left, Gary Evoniuk, Ph.D., Cynthia Kuhn, Ph.D., Tiffany Field, Ph.D., and Katie Eimers, who accepted the award on behalf of her late grandfather, Saul Schanberg, M.D., Ph.D.

Neonatal Touch Therapy Pioneer Receives Golden Goose Award in Washington

A long-time Miller School of Medicine developmental psychologist, whose touch therapy program has transformed the health of hundreds of premature infants, was honored in Washington, D.C., for her holistic treatment approach that was enhanced by research with rats.

Tiffany Field, Ph.D., professor of pediatrics, psychology and psychiatry and Director of the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami’s Mailman Center for Child Development, received the Golden Goose Award on September 18 at a ceremony at the Library of Congress.

Read more about the award »

Olveen Carrasquillo, M.D., M.P.H.

Olveen Carrasquillo, M.D., M.P.H.

Leader in Eliminating Health Disparities Named on Top 100 Under 50 List

Olveen Carrasquillo, M.D., M.P.H., professor of medicine and public health sciences, Chief of the Division of General Internal Medicine and Director of Community Engagement at the Miami Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI), has been named one of Diversity MBA Magazine’s Top 100 Under 50 Diverse Leaders.

Selected from 300 highly competitive applicants, the list, which also includes emerging leaders, represents top talent from Fortune 500 companies, healthcare organizations, non-profit agencies and educators.

Read more about Dr. Carrasquillo »

Ralph Sacco, M.D., M.S., left, speaks to lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

Ralph Sacco, M.D., M.S., left, speaks to lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

Neurology Chair Advocates for Expanded Medicare Telemedicine Stroke Coverage

Every second matters after a person has a stroke, and everyone, regardless of where they live, should have access to the critical treatment needed within a few hours of the stroke’s onset.

This was part of the sobering yet promising message Ralph L. Sacco, M.D., M.S., professor and Chair of Neurology and the Olemberg Family Chair in Neurological Disorders, delivered to lawmakers on Capitol Hill on September 16. Representing the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association, Sacco spoke before the Senate Special Committee on Aging, chaired by Senator Bill Nelson, as part of a roundtable titled “Harnessing the Power of Telehealth: Promises and Challenges.”

Read more about Dr. Sacco's address »

U.S. Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Robert C. Hendel, M.D., pay tribute to the

U.S. Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Robert C. Hendel, M.D., pay tribute to the "U."

Florida Cardiologists Meet with Lawmakers and Congressional Staff in Washington

Robert C. Hendel, M.D., professor of medicine, radiology and interim Chief of the Cardiovascular Division, was part of a delegation of Florida cardiologists who met with members of Congress and their staff in Washington, D.C.

The meeting was held as part of the 2014 American College of Cardiology Legislative Conference, which took place September 14-16. The conference provided an opportunity for the group to inform members of Congress, Capitol Hill staff and other policymakers on issues within the medical and cardiovascular community and to share the transformative work that’s being done during a period of rapid change.

Read more about the delegation's meeting »

Lilian M. Abbo, M.D.

Lilian M. Abbo, M.D.

New Associate Chief Patient Safety and Quality Officer Named for UHealth

Lilian M. Abbo, M.D., associate professor of clinical medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases, has been named Associate Chief Patient Safety and Quality Officer for UHealth and Medical Director for Antimicrobial Stewardship for the UHealth system and Jackson Memorial Hospital.

As Medical Director for the Antimicrobial Stewardship Program at Jackson Memorial Hospital and University of Miami Hospital for the past six years, Abbo has been involved in several key quality and patient safety initiatives, including cost-effective improvements in antimicrobial stewardship.

Read more about Dr. Abbo »

Diana Naranjo

Diana Naranjo

Public Health Researchers Compare Mosquito Control Strategies in Florida and Ecuador

An international team of researchers, including three investigators from the Miller School’s Department of Public Health Sciences, has compared differing mosquito control programs in St. Johns County, Florida, and Guayas, Ecuador. Their findings demonstrate how two countries can develop effective vector control practices, despite their cultural and economic differences.

The results have been published in an article, “Vector Control Programs in Saint Johns County, Florida and Guayas, Ecuador: Successes and Barriers to Integrated Vector Management,” in BioMed Central Public Health, an open-access online journal.

The research was inspired by the World Health Organization’s proposal of a universal concept of integrated vector management – a “rational decision-making process for the optimal use of resources in the management of vector populations, so as to reduce or interrupt transmission of vector-borne diseases.” To assist in the investigation, the article’s lead author, Diana Naranjo, a native of Ecuador who is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Public Health Sciences, tapped into contacts from her medical school education there.

Read more about the research »

Kaitlin Young

Kaitlin Young

Student Wins First Place for Fragile X Syndrome Presentation

Medical student Kaitlin Young recently won first place for her oral presentation on a novel way to diagnose patients with Fragile X Syndrome. She presented her work at the 2014 Pediatric Medical Student Research Forum in Orlando and said the experience further fueled her passion for research.

“I was thrilled. This is the first oral presentation I’ve given based on my work,” said Young, a fourth-year Miller School student with an interest in pediatric neurology.

Read more about the presentation »

Jorge Guerra, M.D.

Jorge Guerra, M.D.

Faculty and Staff Support the U: Radiologist Jorge Guerra Loves Building Bridges—to Students, Pati

Former administrator and faculty member Jorge Guerra, B.S. ’68, M.D. ’72, has watched the University of Miami’s national reputation for excellence grow over the past four decades. A recently retired professor in the Department of Radiology at the Miller School of Medicine, Guerra also has contributed to the University’s success, donating annually to his alma mater for the past 34 years.

“It’s been very exciting to see the ascent of our University,” says Guerra, who completed his residency at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach after earning his medical degree in 1972.

Read his story »

Aniveny Ayala, strategic accounts manager, Qiagen

Aniveny Ayala, strategic accounts manager, Qiagen

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology CORE Hosts Supply Open House

Dozens of University of Miami Miller School of Medicine researchers took advantage of the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (BMB) Core’s first Supply Center Open House to see the latest laboratory products and services.

“It was highly successful event with a lot of representation from both vendors and customers,” said Sylvia Daunert, Ph.D., Pharm.D., M.S., Professor and Lucille P. Markey Chair of the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and Associate Director of the Dr. John T. Macdonald Foundation Biomedical Nanotechnology Institute. “I am very proud of our BMB Core and glad that we can service the UM community.”

Read more about the event »

Jose Szapocznik, Ph.D., professor and Chair of Public Health Sciences and Director of the Miami Clinical and Translational Science Institute, introduces James Pann, Ph.D.

View Video »

Jose Szapocznik, Ph.D., professor and Chair of Public Health Sciences and Director of the Miami Clinical and Translational Science Institute, introduces James Pann, Ph.D.

Grand Rounds Shows Visual Evaluation Reporting Can Help Reach a Wider Audience

The power of a non-traditional approach to research and evaluation reporting was the focus of a recent Grand Rounds co-hosted by the Department of Public Health Sciences and the Miami Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI).

University of Miami alumnus James Pann, Ph.D., professor at Nova Southeastern University’s Applied Research Center at the Abraham S. Fischler School of Education, highlighted the value of the visual evaluation report as an alternative method for communicating findings and engaging stakeholders.

Pann emphasized two approaches to increase the utility and accessibility of evaluation reports — infographics and videos. Using his work with Bridging Families and Communities, a domestic violence and high-conflict divorce program, as an example, Pann demonstrated that transforming reports into visual presentations can help to engage an audience, break down complex ideas, demonstrate the usefulness of key findings and incorporate data-based decision making.

Read more about the Grand Rounds »

Send Your Suggestions for Improvement at UHealth

As Joe Natoli, Senior Vice President for Business and Finance, CFO and Interim Chief Operating Officer of the Miller School and UHealth, wrote in a recent message to faculty and staff, “To continue to improve throughout our operation requires the direct involvement of every one of us.”

Do you have ideas or suggestions for improving access and the patient experience? Are there other improvements or efficiencies that will help the operations at the Miller School and benefit our patients or students? Where can we improve and how can we do it? We’d love to hear from you. We have set up an email address — ideas@med.miami.edu — for submitting ideas.

Here’s the commitment: Every suggestion will be read and considered by senior management at UHealth, with the best ideas added to the priority list for evaluation. We will report some of the suggestions and results in future communications. We very much welcome your thoughts and ideas.

Vacation Policy Change Takes Effect June 2015

Effective June 1, 2015, vacation balances and maximum vacation payouts for exempt, monthly-paid staff may not exceed one year of accrual. New vacation days earned in excess of the one year accrual maximum will be forfeited. The University’s vacation accrual schedule will remain unchanged. To view the revised vacation policy, click on the appropriate link below:

If you have any questions regarding this policy change please discuss them with your departmental Human Resources representative.

November 3 Deadline for Poster Submission and Fee Waiver Application for 2015 Miami Winter Symposium

The deadline for faculty, students and staff to apply for fee waivers to attend the 2015 Miami Winter Symposium is Monday, November 3.

To apply, please complete and email the application form to William J. Whelan, D.Sc., at wwhelan@miami.edu.

The deadline for poster submissions also is November 3. If you are interested in submitting an abstract, please visit www.miamiwintersymposium.com/submit- abstract for more information.

Read more about the symposium »

Boot camp participants hear from top researchers in clinical and translational science.

Boot camp participants hear from top researchers in clinical and translational science.

Registration Opens for CTSI Translational Research Boot Camp

The Miami Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI) has opened registration for its popular Foundations of Translational Research Boot Camp taking place November 17-21. The annual forum provides an extensive introduction to translational science for fellows, graduate and medical students, residents and junior faculty interested in developing their research careers.

Read more about the boot camp »

Emergency Notification Network (ENN) System Test on September 30

The University of Miami will conduct a full-scale, multi-campus test activation of the Emergency Notification Network (ENN) on September 30. The ENN system, a comprehensive communications solution, allows the University to quickly disseminate urgent information through multiple communication mediums. No action is required on your part as a result of this test, but now is a good time to verify your emergency contact information and review emergency procedures at UM.

Read more about the ENN and learn more about preparing for emergencies »

Calder Starbucks Offering Seasonal Treats for Fall

Don’t forget to visit the newest Starbucks location on the medical campus, which opened at the Louis Calder Memorial Library earlier this year.

To make it even more irresistible than the smell of its freshly brewed coffee, the Calder Starbucks is offering several seasonal desserts and drinks reminiscent of fall with a South Florida flair.

Stop by Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. to try new guava cream cheese or pineapple coconut croissant blossoms, dulce de leche or pecan tarts, tres leches cake, rice pudding, pumpkin cream muffins, or vanilla bean crème brûlée. In addition, seasonal drink options include pumpkin spice latte and anniversary blend coffee.

Take a Two-Minute Energy Conservation Survey for a Chance to Win Gift Cards

The University of Miami’s Green U, in partnership with the student Energy and Conservation Organization Board and Facilities, will soon launch the U Conserve Campaign — Energy Conservation Awareness.

To better serve students and make UM even more sustainable, Green U is seeking your feedback on energy conservation. Please take a two-minute survey, and you will be entered to win gift cards from local retailers. Results from the survey will help University leaders make the right decisions on how to save energy on campus.

For more information, visit miami.edu/greenu.