August 28, 2015

Susan and I want to give a shout-out to Whitney Bettenhausen and her second-year medical school colleagues for the highly successful recent Students CURE (Caring for Underserved Regions Everywhere) gala, a fundraiser in support of local and international nongovernmental organizations that strive to improve healthcare for the underserved, whether in North Dakota or around the globe. What a wonderful and successful event! Whitney and her classmates who organized this fantastic gathering did a wonderful job transforming a dream into a reality. Over 220 people attended the festivities that were held at the Alerus Center last Saturday night, and well over $10,000 was raised to support CURE. Not only did individuals support the event but so did many of the hospitals in the state. I was particularly impressed that Matt Grimshaw, the CEO of Mercy Medical Center in Williston, North Dakota, not only supported the event financially, but traveled with his wife all the way from Williston to Grand Forks just for the event. Congratulations to all—organizers and participants—for showing again just what makes North Dakota so special. Well done indeed!

In this week’s review of the School’s responses to the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) visit last year, let me briefly update you on LCME standard ED-24, which specifies that residents (post-MD degree trainees in a medical specialty like family medicine or surgery) who teach medical students must be familiar with the educational objectives of the course in which they participate, and prepared for their teaching role. The LCME noted that our residency programs were inconsistent in how each program prepared residents as teachers. Accordingly, we now require all residents who teach or supervise medical students in our educational program to have participated in and completed a professional development program developed by the American Medical Association specifically to prepare residents for their teaching role. Participation in the program is monitored centrally by the School, and we are pleased to be able to report to the LCME that 100 percent of our residents have completed it, bringing the School into compliance with standard ED-24.

Finally, I’m very pleased to announce, on behalf of the SMHS Advisory Council, the winning applications for funding for residency slots under the Healthcare Workforce Initiative (HWI). Although it will be several weeks yet before all parties sign official and binding contracts, I’m delighted to say that we have indicated our intention to fund the following:

  • Two one-year geriatrics training slots in conjunction with Sanford Health and through our Department of Geriatrics.
  • An additional psychiatry residency slot with an emphasis on telepsychiatry through our Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science.
  • Funding for the Western North Dakota Area Health Education Center (AHEC) to complete Phase II of a study exploring ways to expand health student education in rural communities in North Dakota.
  • Five residency slots per year (three-year program) for a new family medicine program in Fargo, based at Sanford Health and with collaborative arrangements with Essentia Health in Fargo and various rural communities in the state.

Congratulations to all of the approved programs, and thanks to those other programs that applied but weren’t funded because of funding limitations. One important requirement that was stressed to all of the successful applicant programs is that we will review their progress carefully over the coming years to be sure that they are fulfilling the intended purpose of the program: to increase the number of North Dakota-trained physicians practicing in the state. I anticipate that some programs will be more successful than others in achieving this goal, and in due time, we likely will need to adjust the allotment of residency slots allocated to various programs based on which programs best achieve the twin goals of the initiative: to be attractive to SMHS’s medical students and to meet the healthcare delivery needs of the state. I look forward with great enthusiasm to the rollout of these newly funded programs. They are a key component of the HWI, and an important way in which we will meet the healthcare needs of the state in the future. 

Joshua Wynne, MD, MBA, MPH
UND Vice President for Health Affairs
Dean UND School of Medicine and Health Sciences


Recent Educational Policies to Review

Conflict of Interest for Assessment.

Conflict of Interest for Standing Committees.

View all of the School's Policies and Procedures.

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Next Zen in 10 is September 1

Refocus with 10 minutes of movement and relaxation with Zen in 10.

Participation is free and open to the campus. This program will occur on Tuesday and Thursday, September 1 and 3. The times are the following:

  • 9:00–9:10 a.m.—The lawn outside the northeast entry of Twamley (or the building lobby as a rain location).
  • 9:30–9:40 a.m.—East lawn of School of Medicine and Health Sciences (or east main lobby as a rain location).
  • 9:50–10:00 a.m.—East lawn of School of Medicine and Health Sciences (or east main lobby as a rain location).
  • 10:20–10:30 a.m.—Lawn outside Discovery Hall of the Energy and Environmental Research Center (EERC; or Discovery Hall as a rain location).
  • 10:40–10:50 a.m.—Lawn outside Discovery Hall of EERC (or Discovery Hall as a rain location).

Services are provided by Kay Williams, certified yoga instructor.

This is not crazy yoga poses, but more of movement, deep breaths, and having a little fun with your colleagues for a quick 10-minute break, so you can return to work more energized and happy.

Kim Ruliffson, MPA
Coordinator of Work Well
University of North Dakota

"Updates on Appendicitis" is Surgery Grand Rounds topic on September 4

Katherine Senter, MD, PGY IV surgery resident in the Department of Surgery, will be presenting her talk titled "Updates on Appendicitis" from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. on Friday, September 4, in the UND Medical Education Center Auditorium in Fargo.  

The objectives of her talk are the following:

  1. Provide a differential diagnosis for RLQ pain.
  2. Discuss the Alvarado Score for diagnosis of appendicitis.
  3. Consider nonoperative management of appendicitis.

This Surgery Grand Rounds Conference, sponosored by the UND School of Medcine and Health Sciences Department of Surgery, is broadcasted via videoconference to many sites in North Dakota and Minnesota.

All are welcome to attend.

Geralyn Lunski, AAS
Administrative Assistant
Conference & Faculty Coordinator
Department of Surgery

"An Evening with Dr. John Graham" is September 9

The Lake Region Heritage Center presents "An Evening with Dr. John Graham" from 6 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, September 9, at the Center, 502 4th Street NE, in Devils Lake.

Son of the late Dr. John Graham Sr., cofounder of the Lake Region Clinic, Dr. Graham, a 1953 BS Med graduate of the SMHS, shares his knowledge of the history of medicine in the Lake Region, his own experiences as a doctor, and humorous personal anecdotes of growing up in Starkweather and Devils Lake. Quick witted and a gifted speaker, Dr. Graham brings nearly 40 years of medical experience and a lifetime of stories for an entertaining evening at the Lake Region Heritage Center.

Admission: $5. Members: Free

Community invited to participate in Joggin’ with Josh on September 10

Joshua Wynne, MD, MBA, MPH, University of North Dakota vice president for health affairs and dean of the School of Medicine and Health Sciences, invites the community and all students, faculty, and staff at the School and the University to advocate healthful lifestyles by joining him for Joggin' with Josh, an informal 5K, 10K, or 1-mile walk, jog, or run on Thursday, September 10. This is a free public event. Everyone is welcome to participate, so please bring your family and friends.

A sign-up table will be in the School of Medicine and Health Sciences' main lobby facing Columbia Road; sign-up and T-shirt pickup starts at 4 p.m. The dean will speak to the group before the event, which starts at 4:30 p.m. To get a head start on your fellow participants, please complete the sign-up form and bring it with you to the SMHS. Forms will also be available in the main lobby before the event. 

Walkers, joggers, and runners are asked to gather on the front steps before taking off on a route down University Avenue and along the outskirts of campus. A water station will be located at the halfway point of the 5K, and water and healthful snacks will be available after the event.

Save the Date—Java with Josh is September 16

All SMHS faculty, staff, and students are invited to have an informal, complimentary cup of coffee, juice, or tea with Dean Wynne in the Lower Vennes Atrium from 8:30 to 9 a.m. on Wednesday, September 16, to discuss what’s new at the School.

Questions are encouraged!

RSVP to Kristen Peterson by Wednesday, September 9.

Hope to see you there.

Dean Joshua Wynne, MD, MBA, MPH

Save the Date—School welcomes new associate deans and chairs on September 30

University of North Dakota Vice President for Health Affairs and Dean of the School of Medicine and Health Sciences Joshua Wynne invites you to join him in welcoming the School’s new associate deans and founding chairs. The event will be held on Wednesday, September 30, from 2 to 4 p.m., with a brief program at 2 p.m., in the Vennes Atrium at the School, 501 North Columbia Road, Grand Forks.

Dean Wynne will formally welcome the following internationally recognized, distinguished faculty to the School:

  • Marc D. Basson, MD, PhD, MBA, FACS, Associate Dean for Medicine.
  • Richard Van Eck, PhD, Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning and Founding Dr. David and Lola Rognlie Monson Endowed Professor in Medical Education.
  • Donald Jurivich, DO, Founding Eva L. Gilbertson, MD, Distinguished Chair of Geriatrics.
  • Gary G. Schwartz, PhD, MPH, PhD, Founding Chair of the Department of Population Health.

Refreshments will be served. Everyone is welcome to attend. 

American Indian Health Research Conference is October 23

Save the date for the 13th Annual American Indian Health Research Conference, to be held from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on October 23, 2015, at the Alerus Center in Grand Forks. The event is sponsored by North Dakota INBRE, Center for Rural Health, Seven Generations Center of Excellence in Native Behavioral Health, and the UND Chapter of the Society of Indian Psychologists.

Registration information coming soon!

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National Rural Health Day Photo Contest

November 19, 2015, is the 5th Annual National Rural Health Day. The Center for Rural Health is sponsoring a photo contest to celebrate. Share your creativity of what rural means to you with the Center for Rural Health by submitting a photo!

Prizes will be awarded to the top three photos in each of the two divisions.

You could win

  • In the Adult (18-years-and-older) division, the first-place winner receives a $150 Cenex gift card, second place a $100 Cenex gift card, and third place receives a $50 Cenex gift card.
  • In the Youth (17-years-and-under) division, the first-place winner receives a $100 Amazon gift card, second place a $50 Amazon gift card, and third place receives a $25 Amazon gift card.

Contest winners will be notified after National Rural Health Day (November 19, 2015).

Learn More

Learn more about the photo contest and how to submit your entry. Photos are due by Friday, November 13.

Coming Together: New question and answer

The UND School of Medicine and Health Sciences Transition Management Team continues to plan for the move to our new building in 2016.

The following question was received by the committee. 

  • Q: Where is the Mother’s Room?  

    Answer: The Mother's Room is adjacent to the women's restroom on the third floor in the east wing.

For more new building information, to view all the frequently asked questions and answers, or to submit a question, please visit the Coming Together website.

Jessica Sobolik
Director of Alumni and Community Relations

Host a Scrubs Camp in Your Community

The Rural Collaborative Opportunities for Occupational Learning in Health (R-COOL-Health) Scrubs Camp program is an opportunity for students in Grades 5–12 to learn about healthcare professions in fun, interactive ways. The Center for Rural Health and the North Dakota Area Health Education Center provide funding and support to communities to host a local Scrubs Camp. Grant proposals for the 2015–2016 Scrubs Camps are now being accepted.

An informational technical assistance call is taking place on Thursday, September 10, 2015, from 3:15 to 4:00 p.m. CDT. Call in number is 1-866-809-4014, Passcode 7773294. Proposals must be received by e-mail (not postmarked) by 4:00 p.m. CDT October 1, 2015.

The full guidance for submitting your proposal can be found on the Scrubs Camp project webpage. For more information or to submit your proposal, contact Kylie Nissen at the Center for Rural Health at 701-777-5380 or

Date Change! Call for Presentations—2016 Dakota Conference on Rural and Public Health

Rural and public health professionals are encouraged to submit abstracts for the 2016 Dakota Conference on Rural and Public Health. Both oral and poster presentations should feature community or research projects that use creative strategies, facilitate the collaboration between rural and public health entities, can be replicated, and have an emphasis on education and developing partnerships. Abstract submissions must be received no later than 5:00 p.m. CST on Thursday, October, 1, 2015. Visit the Dakota Conference website for details on submitting an abstract.

The Dakota Conference is Coordinated and Facilitated by the Center for Rural Health, University of North Dakota (UND) School of Medicine and Health Sciences (SMHS).

Supported by

Contact Kylie Nissen or 701-777-5380.

"Preventing Suicide: A Comprehensive Public Health Approach"—CDC Grand Rounds

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) Public Health Grand Rounds is a monthly webcast created to foster discussion on major public health issues. Each session focuses on key challenges related to a specific health topic, and explores the latest scientific evidence and the potential effect of different interventions. The Grand Rounds sessions also highlight how the CDC and its partners are already addressing these challenges and discuss the recommendations for future research and practice. September's presentation is "Preventing Suicide: A Comprehensive Public Health Approach." All of the webcasts are archived for later viewing.

Social Media: MPH alumnus Michael Mudgett

On our Facebook page, read about MPH alumnus Michael Mudgett, who is working at the California Rural Indian Health Board in Sacramento.

Also on our Facebook page, Dean Wynne answers questions about how many prescriptions are too many, and about newer blood thinners available that don’t require blood tests in his latest Health Matters column, which can be found in the Grand Forks Herald every other Monday. Please submit any general health-related questions to

You can also get the latest SMHS news by following the School on Twitter

University Letter: Presidential search committee named

The North Dakota University System has announced the members of a Presidential Search Committee to identify candidates for the position of president of the University of North Dakota. Dr. Robert Kelley, who has been the president at UND since July 1, 2008, will be retiring in January.

More information about this and other UND news can be found in the University Letter. Published on Tuesdays and Thursdays, it is distributed electronically to the University community and is always available online. For more information, contact editor Jan Orvik at (701) 777-3621.

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Library of the Health Sciences hours for August and Labor Day holiday

Library of the Health Sciences hours for August and the Labor Day holiday are the following:

Fall semester, August 28–September 3

Friday, Aug. 28—7:30 a.m.–6 p.m.
Saturday, Aug. 29—10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Sunday, Aug. 30—1 p.m.–midnight 
Monday–Thursday, Aug. 31 to Sept. 3—7:30 a.m.–midnight 

Labor Day holiday September 4–September 7

Friday, Sept. 4—7:30 a.m.–5 p.m. 
Saturday, Sept. 5—1 p.m.–5 p.m.
Sunday, Sept. 6—1 p.m.–5 p.m.
Monday, Sept. 7, Labor Day—1 p.m.–midnight
Tuesday, Sept. 8—7:30 a.m.–midnight  

If you have any questions, please contact Kelly Thormodson (701) 777-4129.  

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