UMass FMCH Tuesday Talk - August 22, 2023/RESEARCH

Welcome to the FMCH Tuesday Talk. Please continue to send us your announcements, celebrations, and accomplishments to 

Table of Contents

Focus of the Week – Research


Frankly Speaking Podcast

Clinical Services Spotlight

Focus of the Week - Research

Suzanne Mitchell, MD, MS, Director, Research

NIH deadline reminder

  • In addition to standard due dates, NIH provides a thorough resource detailing numerous deadlines for a variety of grants. Please visit for more information.

Data Management and Sharing Plan updates


Biosketch requirements for National Science Foundation proposals

  • Beginning October 23rd, 2023. National Science Foundation (NSF) has partnered with NIH to use SciENcv: Science Experts Network Curriculum Vitae as an NSF-approved format for use in preparation of the biographical sketch section of an NSF proposal. Adoption of a single, common researcher profile system for Federal grants reduces administrative burden for researchers. Proposers must save these documents and submit them as part of their proposals via or


Research Administration Updates are hosted by Grants and Contracts Administration on the 2nd Thursday of each month and will resume on September 14th. Meeting details and past presentations are available for review: Research Administration Updates (RAUs) (


Past editions of the Tuesday Talk Newsletter are available

at under Resources.

As we grieve the loss of Judy Savageau and realize the impact she had on our work, if you need access to her files for documents or communication, please contact

As mentioned last week, congratulations to the following FMCH Remillard Family Community Services grant awardees. Here is a summary of their projects:

Strengthening relationships and skills to address the social determinants of health

Proposed by Patricia Seymour, MD; Christine MacGinnis, DO; and Susan Hogan, MD,

The new social determinants of health curriculum will involve students using national and community-level data to understand the impact of social determinants of health.

  • Increasing physical activity in high school students at Holyoke High School-North Campus

Proposed by medical students Jennifer Marino, Akanksha Nagarkar, Nefeli Neamonitaki, and Elena Tang; and Melanie Gnazzo, MD.

For M.E.A.L. (My Education, Action and Lifestyle) Inc., a student-run organization, working to improve access to future health predictors and improve health outcomes in Holyoke.

  • Expanding community health worker workforce development within the African community in Worcester

Proposed by medical students Erik Bartland and William Lemnios; and Olga Valdman, MD.

To increase engagement of African community members in community health worker training.

  • Improving postpartum and breastfeeding education among medical trainees for provision of high-quality breastfeeding medical care to the Worcester population

Proposed by Pratiksha Yalakkishettar, MD, resident in family medicine.

To close the gap in clinical training around medication safety in lactation and provide education for medical trainees who interface with recently postpartum or lactating individuals.

  • Breaking barriers through advocacy for Worcester survivors of commercial sexual exploitation

Proposed by medical students Evelyn Semenov, Stevie Yang, Ivy Mwangi, Shivi Maheswaran, Rosemary Cobb, Ana-Maria Poole, Ari Fantakis Ettore and Nefeli Neamonitaki; nursing student Rachel Stroh; and Jennifer Bradford, MD.

A program that aims to address disparities encountered by survivors of commercial sexual exploitation while educating current and future health care providers to better advocate for survivors.

The Center for Integrated Primary Care offers free, online training in the assessment of OUD and treatment with buprenorphine and naltrexone. This content takes ~2 hours to complete and those who complete it will receive free CME. 

The Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS) has courses as well:

Boston Medical Center has 16 hours of free CME in 30-minute increments:

See attached for other answers and options.

Social Determinants of Health Poster Session

Wednesday, August 23rd, 3:15-5:30pm, Faculty Conference Room,

UMass Chan Medical School. (see attached flyer for additional information)


  • 3:15-3:45: Poster Session and Judging 
  • 3:45-3:50: Welcome by Dr. Patricia Seymour, Associate Professor, Family Medicine and Community Health, Assistant Dean of Clinical Curriculum 
  • 3:50-4:20: Keynote Address by Dr. Crista Johnson-Agbakwu, Professor, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Professor, Population and Quantitative Health Sciences, Executive Director, Collaborative in Health Equity 
  • 4:20-4:30: Closing Remarks and Presentation of Awards by Dr. Susan Hogan, Assistant Professor Family Medicine and Community Health and Longitudinal Leader of Societal Forces of Health and Disease 
  • 4:30-5:30: Reception 

Hepatitis C and General Hepatology Project ECHO

(Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes)

You are invited to join an exciting virtual collaborative learning opportunity which will allow you to build expertise in the evaluation and management of patients living with chronic

Hepatitis C. (see attached brochure and curriculum schedule)

What? Hepatitis C ECHO, a virtual case-based tele-mentoring educational model

Who? Primary care interdisciplinary team members (providers, nurses, social workers, community health workers, patient navigators, etc.)

Why? Tele-mentoring model that links specialists to primary care providers (PCPs) via video conferencing from any computer; Case based, iterative learning facilitated by specialists and related experts; through guided practice, PCPs become proficient in specialty care

When? A new cohort begins Friday, September 8th, 2023, 12:30 - 1:30pm ~ with 10 sessions held bi-monthly.

Register Today!

Funding Opportunity: The Blue Cross Shields of MA Foundation Special Initiatives

grant program provides organizations with a one-time grant of up to $50,000 to pilot or launch a new project over a one-year period which empowers communities to advance health equity. Visit their website for more details:

Applications are due September 11th, 2023.

Please join us on Tuesday, September 19th, 12 noon – 1pm, for our Family Medicine and Community Health Grand Rounds, to attend our 25th annual Putterman Lecture, being presented by Tochi Iroku-Malize, MD, MPH, MBA. Her lecture topic will be on “Walking in Their Shoes – My Journey as a Patient Searching for Equity”. This is a hybrid event. The presentation will take place at the UMass Chan Medical School in the Albert Sherman Center Auditorium AS2.2102 or via Zoom. For further details, please use this link to view the flyer for this event, Steven L. Putterman, MD Memorial Lecture - Tap here to view. We look forward to seeing everyone.

Pilot Project Award - Call for Applications

The UMass Chan Ambulatory Research Consortium (ARC, UMass ARC website) is a collaboration of the Departments of Family Medicine and Community Health, Medicine and Population and Quantitative Health Sciences, and the UMass Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS). The goal of the PBRN is to accelerate health services research and improvement science and to serve as a learning laboratory for discovery that improves the delivery and outcomes of ambulatory care.

Letters of Intent (LOI) are due on September 22nd.

We welcome submissions for pilot project awards (up to $25,000 for 1 year).

Faculty Resource Fair

The Office of Faculty Affairs is holding a Faculty Resource Fair on September 28th from 11:30am-1:30pm in the school lobby, please see details [here].

Teaching of Tomorrow (TOT) is a nationally recognized and highly acclaimed faculty development program that focuses on building and refining foundational skills for effective clinical teaching in inpatient and ambulatory settings. Preceptors from any specialty and discipline will enhance their clinical teaching skills through discourse and practice. Workshop dates are November 17-18, 2023, and March 8-9, 2024, and will be held at the Hotel Northampton. Participants must attend all four days. See the brochure for details and

register at

Frankly Speaking Podcast

A weekly Podcast series covering newsworthy topics in primary care medicine.

Listen on Apple Podcasts:

Please join us for an overview: In July 2023, the FDA made a monumental decision to approve Opill, marking the first an oral contraceptive will be made available without a prescription. The inaugural over-the-counter oral contraceptive is a progesterone-only pill. Join us to discuss the underlying rationales driving this decision and the prospective implications it might have on medical practice as well as women's health. Guest: Susan Feeney, DNP, FNP-BC, NP-C, presents: "Beyond the Prescription Pad: Over-the-Counter Oral Contraceptive Gains FDA Approval" - Frankly Speaking Ep 342.

Clinical Services Spotlight:

Josephine Fowler, MD, MBA, Vice Chair of Clinical Services

COVID-19 and variants

  • The CDC is monitoring a mutating variant.
  • BA.2.86 has 36 mutations.
  • EG.5 is a subvariant of the omicron virus.
  • It has not been determined if the new variants are more contagious.

Symptoms of New COVID include the following:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Pink eye


  • The current 7-day positivity rate is 15.5%.
  • In-house confirmed positive, 21.
  • Of the 21, 71% are fully vaccinated.
  • Of the 21, 51% have primary COVID.
  • Of the 3 in the ICU, 1 is fully vaccinated.

What is Long COVID?

  • People who have had COVID and subsequently have lingering symptoms such as brain fog, fatigue, chronic pain, shortness of breath, and chronic fatigue may be experiencing long COVID.
  • The World Health organization define long COVID as development of symptoms 3 months after the initial COVID infection and lasting at least 2 months without any other explanation. The CDC notes a similar definition with symptoms occurring at least 4 weeks after the initial COVID infection.
  • It is unclear how long these symptoms will last. New research suggests that long COVID may last as long as two years.

Source: Long COVID or Post COVID Conditions, Updated July 23, 2023. Centers for Disease Control.

Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Condition: Post-Covid Condition. Updated March 28, 2023 Q&A,


The AUDIT Tool is an alcohol screening tool used often in ambulatory. The Tool is now being added to the inpatient screening. (See below)

USAUDIT-C Screening Tool

The USAUDIT-C screening tool was added to the Admission Navigator under Assessments as this is important documentation that will be required by MassHealth in the future. A positive risk score (greater than 0) should be communicated to the patient’s providers with the goal of offering a brief alcohol intervention. Quality Teams will be reviewing the frequency of the positive risk score and developing methods ensuring screen completion such as required documentation and notification via Epic to clinicians to provide the intervention. For any questions, please refer to the recently distributed job aide or a member of the NESS team.

Important MATE training below:

The Medication Access and Training Expansion (MATE) Act, passed as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023, requires all DEA-registered providers to complete a one-time, 8-hour training for opioid and substance use disorder to be met on or after June 27th in alignment with your new or renewing registration. You can meet that requirement through a free, online Pain Management & Opioids CME online course from NEJM Knowledge+.

Wellness Resources

The Caring for the Caregiver Program provides resources such as the Caregiver Support Line (508-334-HELP) and The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) which offers a variety of services and supports (including virtual peer support and wellness tips. EAP can be accessed at 866-263-3525, or, [company code: UmassMemorial]. 

More information is available on the Caring for the Caregiver page.

Yoga Classes with Dr. Liz Erban

New members always welcome. 

Please join for early morning gentle yoga, Wednesday mornings 6:30am via Zoom.

Much appreciation to Dr. Liz Erban for hosting these outstanding classes. 

Join Zoom Meeting ID: 923 9393 3653 Passcode: 764113