April 24, 2015

I again was the Doctor of the Day at the Capitol this past Wednesday. The Doctor of the Day program is sponsored by the North Dakota Medical Association, and it is a great way to watch government in action, meet with members of the Legislature . . . oh, and take care of a few patients! Although the typical patient that I see in my cardiology clinic has a heart concern like chest pain or shortness of breath, the patients at the Capitol had earaches, viral upper respiratory illnesses, and the like. Accompanying me Wednesday was Dr. Gaurav Mehta, a student in UND’s Master of Public Health Program. It was apparent that the legislators are looking forward to adjourning for the biennium, but they remain diligent and careful as they finish the 64th Legislative Assembly. I heard various predictions as to when they may finish up, from this Saturday to a week from today on the 80th day of the session. Time will tell!

Dr. Malak Kotb and I are pleased to announce that Chester Fritz Distinguished Professor Jonathan Geiger has accepted our offer to become the Vice Chair of the Department of Basic Sciences. Vice Chair Geiger will have three main responsibilities in this new position: to assist with the administrative functions of the department; to advise and assist Dr. Kotb regarding the research and educational enterprise within the department and its articulation with UND and the external world; and to represent Dr. Kotb when she is out of town or unavailable.

The two finalists for the position of the associate dean for the Southeast (Fargo) Campus will be reinterviewed next week. I hope to have an announcement of the new dean shortly thereafter. We had six outstanding candidates apply and undergo an initial interview; one candidate subsequently withdrew. Both finalists are highly regarded Fargo physicians, and I am quite confident that very soon we’ll have a new campus dean to join the three other campus deans.

The Department of Occupational Therapy hosted its fourth annual Alumni and Friends Reception in conjunction with the American Occupational Therapy Association Conference & Expo last Friday, April 17. The conference was in Nashville, and just over 60 people attended the reception, including alumni, faculty, students, and guests. A number of graduates and faculty presented posters and workshops at the conference. It’s great to hear about our alumni’s successes in the field. They represent UND well!

Dr. Ken Ruit and colleagues, under the guidance of Senior Associate Dean Dr. Gwen Halaas, continue to prepare for the October 18–21 revisit of the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) in regards to the reaccreditation of our medical school curriculum. We have a good idea of the LCME questions that we need to address, and the team is working diligently to be sure that we are able to answer the questions fully. Once we get closer to the actual visit, the LCME will provide us with a list of the members of the limited survey team and an agenda for the visit. At that point, we’ll know better who from the School will need to meet with the team, but the list certainly will include representation from administration, faculty, and students.

Finally, today marks the annual medical student Admissions Retreat sponsored by the Office of Student Affairs and Admissions. The meeting serves at least two functions: a look back at how the medical student admissions process has worked in the past and a look forward as to any changes or innovations that we need to incorporate in the future. The Association of American Colleges (AAMC) has championed the concept of a holistic review of applicants, which the AAMC defines as “a flexible, individualized way of assessing an applicant’s capabilities by which balanced consideration is given to experiences, attributes, and academic metrics and, when considered in combination, how the individual might contribute value as a medical student and physician.” While we do this already at the School, I think that further incorporation of such a holistic approach to our process has merit. One of the key features of such an admissions process is that it highlights the importance of linking a candidate’s attributes to the purpose of the school, which in our case is focused especially on helping to provide the needed healthcare workforce for the state. 

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 Policy between Faculty and Students with Regard to Assessment.

View all of the School's Policies and Procedures.

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Karli Galstad

     Administrative Secretary

Karli Galstad began employment on April 20 as an administrative secretary in Family and Community Medicine. Melissa Gardner is her supervisor.

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Amber Chevalier presents graduate student research seminar on April 29

Amber Chevalier, a graduate student in the Pharmacology, Physiology, and Therapeutics Program in the Department of Basic Sciences, will be presenting her research seminar titled “Triacetin therapy alters spinal cord lipid metabolism in mice subjected to experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE)” at noon on Wednesday, April 29, in Room 3933 at the SMHS in Grand Forks.

All are welcome to attend.

Lisa Brown
Education Coordinator
Department of Basic Sciences

Patrick Osei-Owusu's doctoral examination is April 29

The doctoral examination for Patrick Osei-Owusu, a candidate for a PhD in the Microbiology and Immunology Program in the Department of Basic Sciences, is set for 1 p.m. on Wednesday, April 29, in Room 5510 at the SMHS in Grand Forks. His dissertation title is "The N-Terminus of Type III Secretion Needle Protein YscF from Yersinia pestis Functions to Modulate Innate Immune Responses." Dr. Matthew Nilles is the committee chair.

All are welcome to attend.

Lisa Brown
Education Coordinator
Department of Basic Sciences

Last day to apply for Science Day on May 2

All students in Grades Five and Six are invited to “Science Day” on Saturday, May 2, at the UND School of Medicine and Health Sciences in Grand Forks.

The free event features hands-on learning experiences organized by medical students. Science Day is designed to stimulate children’s interest in science. Children will conduct science projects and learn about human anatomy and various health issues, such as the dangers of tobacco use, among other topics.

Two sessions, morning (9 a.m.–noon) and afternoon (1–4 p.m.) will be offered.

The event is FREE. Parents are welcome, but they are not required to attend since medical students supervise all events. For more information and a registration form, visit http://med.und.edu/events/science-day.pdf or call (701) 777-4305.

Physician Assistant Program’s annual Scholarly Project poster session is May 7

The Physician Assistant Program’s annual Scholarly Project poster session will be held on Thursday, May 7, from 8:15 a.m. to noon in the Vennes Atrium at the SMHS in Grand Forks.

There will be 26 posters presented on current medical topics.

SMHS faculty, staff, and students are welcome to view the posters and visit with the students. Cookies and beverages will be served.

Susan Kuntz, PhD, MLS (ASCP)
Assistant Professor
Physician Assistant Program

2015 Staff Recognition Luncheon is May 12

Please mark your calendars to attend the 2015 Annual Staff Recognition Ceremony and Luncheon on Tuesday, May 12, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the UND Memorial Union Ballroom. UND staff employees with continuous, benefited employment at UND will be recognized for their years of service. Also to be recognized will be this year's selections for Meritorious Service, and Ken and Toby Baker UND Proud awards.

To view the School's honorees, please read more.

Jean Altepeter
Associate Director
Human Resources

2015 Central Region IDeA Conference is June 1–3

ND INBRE is pleased to be hosting the 2015 Central Region IDeA Conference on June 1–3 at the Alerus Center, in Grand Forks.

On behalf of the North Dakota IDeA (Institutional Development Award) Network of Biomedical Research Excellence (ND INBRE), we would like to invite you to attend the Central Region IDeA conference at the Alerus Center in Grand Forks on June 1–3. The central theme of the first full day of the IDeA Central Region Conference (June 2) will be promoting diversity through IDeA programs. The final half-day of the conference (June 3) will explore the role of the IDeA program in promoting economic development.

IDeA states in the central region include North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Kansas.

For registration and a schedule please visit http://und.edu/academics/extended-learning/conference-services/idea-conference/.

Kim Hansen
Administrative Officer

Register Now! 2015 Dakota Conference on Rural and Public Health, June 2–4

2015 Dakota Conference on Rural and Public Health

June 2–4, 2015
Grand International Hotel, Minot, North Dakota

Reserve your room today!
Toll Free: 800.735.4493

Visit the Dakota Conference website for further details.

The Dakota Conference is facilitated by the

  • Center for Rural Health at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences 

The conference is supported by

  • Altru Health System
  • College of Nursing and Professional Disciplines (UND)
  • Department of Family and Community Medicine (UND SMHS)
  • North Dakota Public Health Association
  • North Dakota Rural Health Association

Contact Kylie Nissen

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day Forum is June 15

The National Indigenous Elder Justice Initiative (NIEJI), located within the Center for Rural Health, is hosting a forum for World Elder Abuse Awareness Day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Monday, June 15, at the Ina Mae Rude Center for Innovation at UND, 4200 James Ray Drive, in Grand Forks. Wear purple and join the forum for a discussion on topics such as financial exploitation and elder abuse policies.

Lunch will be provided.

Contact Cassie LaBine at (701) 777-6084 to register.

Save the Date! 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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School of Medicine and Health Sciences to present Doctor of Medicine degrees

The University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences will confer the Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) degree during commencement at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 9, at the Chester Fritz Auditorium on the UND campus in Grand Forks.

Fifty-five degree candidates will participate in the ceremony. The graduates have completed four years of medical education to earn their Doctor of Medicine, beginning with two years of instruction at the UND campus in Grand Forks, followed by two years learning and working with practicing physicians who volunteer to serve as their teachers in hospitals and clinics throughout North Dakota. Upon graduating, the doctors will complete their residencies, a period of advanced intensive training in their chosen medical specialty before independent practice as a physician. Depending on the medical specialty, medical school graduates complete anywhere from three to seven years of residency training after medical school.

Timothy D. Henry, MD, alumnus (BS Med ’80), an interventional cardiologist, the director of Cardiology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, California, and a professor of medicine at Cedars-Sinai and UCLA, will deliver the keynote address titled “Heart to Heart.”

Henry is the former director of Research at the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation at Abbott Northwestern Hospital, and professor of medicine at the University of Minnesota. Henry grew up in Westhope, North Dakota, and spent three years at Minot State College before graduating from the University of North Dakota in 1978. He attended the UND Medical School for two years before graduating from the University of California, San Francisco in 1982, where he was named to Alpha Omega Alpha, the medical honor society. He was an internal medicine resident and chief medical resident from 1982 to 1986 at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center. He completed his training as a cardiology fellow, chief cardiology fellow, and interventional cardiology fellow at the University of Minnesota in 1991.

Henry has coauthored over 300 manuscripts and book chapters in prominent peer-reviewed journals, including Circulation Research, Journal of the American College of Cardiology, Journal of the American Medical Association, Lancet, European Heart Journal, and the New England Journal of Medicine. He is a nationally recognized expert in the treatment of patients with refractory angina and acute myocardial infarction. In addition, he is a national leader in cardiovascular stem cell therapy and is a principal investigator of the National Institutes of Health Cardiovascular Cell Therapy Research Network. He is widely sought after as a guest lecturer on both the national and international level.

Henry is a recipient of numerous awards and research grants, including the Innovator Award from the American College of Cardiology, the LUMEN Global Lifetime Achievement Award in Myocardial Infarction, and the Minnesota American Heart Association Heart & Stroke Hero Award in Research. He was named one of the Best Doctors in America (2007–14) and one of Minnesota’s 100 Most Influential Health Care Leaders.

For a complete list of the graduates, please visit http://tinyurl.com/2015-UND-SMHS-Grads.

Johnson editor of “Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes—2015 Abridged for Primary Care Providers”

Eric L. Johnson, MD, associate professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine, and assistant medical director of the Altru Health System Diabetes Center, is an editor of the “Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes—2015 Abridged for Primary Care Providers” published by the American Diabetes Association (ADA) in the April issue of Clinical Diabetes.

The ADA’s “Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes” is updated and published annually in a supplement to the January issue of Diabetes Care. The Standards includes the most current evidence-based recommendations for diagnosing and treating adults and children with all forms of diabetes.

Johnson serves on the ADA’s Primary Care National Committee.

Alberto is new governor of the North Dakota Chapter of the American College of Physicians

Boston (April 17, 2015) — Neville M. Alberto, MD, FACP, will become Governor of the North Dakota Chapter of the American College of Physicians (ACP), the national organization of internists. His term will begin during Internal Medicine 2015—the ACP annual scientific meeting in Boston, April 30–May 2.

A resident of West Fargo, N.D., Dr. Alberto is clinical professor of internal medicine at the University of North Dakota, program director Transitional Year Residency Program at the University of North Dakota and associate program director Internal Medicine Residency Program at the University of North Dakota. He also is a hospitalist in the Department of Internal Medicine at Sanford Health System, and a consultant in hospice and palliative medicine in the Department of Internal Medicine at Sanford Health System. He is currently the governor-elect in transition for the ACP governor position. Governors are elected by local ACP members and serve four-year terms. Working with a local council, they supervise ACP chapter activities, appoint members to local committees, and preside at regional meetings. They also represent members by serving on the ACP Board of Governors.

Dr. Alberto earned his medical degree from Goa Medical College, Goa, India.

He has been a fellow of ACP since 2010. FACP is an honorary designation that recognizes ongoing individual service and contributions to the practice of medicine. The main areas of professional interest for Dr. Alberto include developing and implementing bedside ultrasound curriculum for medical students and residents at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences and breast cancer research—developing breast cancer biomarkers for early detection and prognostication of breast cancer.

The American College of Physicians (www.acponline.org) is the largest medical specialty organization and the second-largest physician group in the United States. ACP members include 141,000 internal medicine physicians (internists), related subspecialists, and medical students. Internal medicine physicians are specialists who apply scientific knowledge and clinical expertise to the diagnosis, treatment, and compassionate care of adults across the spectrum from health to complex illness. 

Megan Hanks
Public Relations Coordinator
Public Relations and Web Communications
American College of Physicians
mhanks@acponline.org or 215-351-2656 

Gray participating in "Promoting Equal Futures Across the Lifespan" Roundtable at the White House

Research Associate Professor Jacque Gray, PhD, is participating today, April 24, in the "Promoting Equal Futures Across the Lifespan" Roundtable at the White House. Gray is associate director of the Center for Rural Health's Indigenous Programs, the CRH's program director for the Seven Generations Center of Excellence in Native Behavioral Health, and the program director of the National Indigenous Elder Justice Initiative.

Gray was invited to participate by the White House Council on Women and Girls. In support of the 2015 White House Conference on Aging, the Equal Futures event is convening policy advocates, health practitioners, and community leaders across the fields of aging, domestic violence, women’s health, and financial security to share expertise on challenges facing older women in the United States.

Building on White House leadership to address the issues of equal pay, workplace flexibility, and advancing opportunities for women and girls, this listening session will provide a forum for expert stakeholders to discuss issues facing older women, including health disparities among older women of color and Native women elders; economic security across the lifespan and the challenges of caregiving; and preventing and responding to abuse in later life.

Hillebrand is chair-elect of Region IV of the National Council of University Research Administrators

Diane Hillebrand, CRA, grant and contract officer for the SMHS, has been elected chair-elect of Region IV of the National Council of University Research Administrators. NCURA serves its members and advances the field of research administration through education and professional development programs, the sharing of knowledge and experience, and by fostering a professional, collegial, and respected community.

Hillebrand's term will start following the Region IV spring meeting April 26–30 in Chicago. She will serve a three-year term as chair-elect, chair, and past chair.

New building office furnishings

Office furniture for the new building will need to be ordered in the very near future. The Furniture Committee has put forth much effort in the past year to make some decisions in that regard. At this point, it is time for employees to choose the options that will best suit their needs in the new building. To this end, a sample office and workstation mockup have been constructed in the lower Vennes Atrium and will be available for viewing from Monday, April 27, to Friday, May 8, 2015. Examples of chair choices and office accessory pieces will also be available for viewing; these will assist in completion of the individual selection worksheets for employees who will be located in an office setting.

In the next few days, members of the Furniture Committee will be handing out more information about these options. Beginning on Monday, please take a moment in this two-week period to stop down, view, select your choices, and submit your completed worksheet to your appointed Furniture Committee member.

SMHS Furniture Committee 

"Prevention and Control of Skin Cancer"—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. April's presentation will be "Prevention and Control of Skin Cancer." All of the webcasts are archived for later viewing.

Social Media: Wosick, MD '81, underwrites the New Artist Initiative

On our Facebook page, read about William Wosick, MD ’81, clinical associate professor of radiology for the Southeast (Fargo) Campus, who underwrites the New Artist Initiative: The Art Makers at the North Dakota Museum of Art.

Also on our Facebook page, Dean Wynne discusses how swollen extremities can signal heart, kidney disease; and how medical research success rates are derived 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 healthmatters@med.und.edu.

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

University Letter: Search to begin for dean of libraries; committee named

The University of North Dakota is poised to begin a national search for its dean of libraries. This dean will provide essential vision and leadership to support and enhance the central role of the Chester Fritz Library—as well as that of all of the university’s libraries—on campus and beyond.

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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Reaxys trial

The Library of the Health Sciences has arranged a 30-day trial of Reaxys & Reaxys Medicinal Chemistry.

The combination of Reaxys and Reaxys Medicinal Chemistry allows you to do the following:

  • Access over 16,000 periodicals.
  • Find structures, properties, synthesis possibilities, reactions, and bioactivity data.
  • Get inorganic, organic, and organometallic chemistry and bioactivity data through one interface.
  • Control your search by choosing from various intuitive search options.

Trial start date began on April 3 and will end on May 3, 2015.

The library would appreciate feedback. Do so by e-mailing Kelly Thormodson or calling (701) 777-4129.

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