Making the Rounds with Founding Dean Dr. Barbara Atkinson
Friends and colleagues,
The past three years have gone so fast. It seems like just yesterday that I started planning the medical school with the help of so many of you in the community. Other days, it seems like I've been part of the Las Vegas community for a decade. It's been an incredible journey.
Before I start the year discussing projects we are working on right now, I first want to reflect on the accomplishments of 2016 - there were many. Some of these took nearly a year or more to complete while others fell into place easily.
- Earned "Candidate School" status in February from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME). A survey site visit was scheduled for July.
- Conducted a comprehensive "mock" site visit June 16-18 to prepare faculty members for the July site visit.
- Completed a successful LCME survey site visit July 17-20. The site visit assessed the School's readiness to accept its first class of students and included review of 12 LCME accreditation standards.
- Achieved preliminary accreditation status on Oct. 18 by the LCME, which meant we could accept students for our charter class. Facebook announcement achieved more than 38,500 hits on October 18.
- Granted Graduate Medical Education (GME) accreditation in August from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). UNLV School of Medicine is an institutional sponsor of GME and beginning July 2017 can oversee current residency and fellowship programs at University Medical Center (UMC), Sunrise Hospital, Southern Nevada Veterans Administration Hospital, and the Southern Nevada Adult Mental Health Services.
- Launched the UNLV School of Medicine admissions process on Oct. 29. Within weeks, the School received more than 800 applications -- approximately 60 percent of the applicants were Nevada residents or had strong ties to the state. All of the applications were reviewed. Seven interview days were held between November 14 and December 16. Since November, 153 applicants have been interviewed.
Educational Program and Structure
- Finalized curriculum for years one and two. The curriculum was cited by the LCME as thoughtful, innovative and well integrated with the school's mission.
- Selected and populated the medical school's curriculum management system, LCMS+. The system will accurately track the teaching, learning and assessment activities of the school's curriculum.
- Purchased and installed the school's virtual anatomy tables. Virtual anatomy tables provide interactive computer screens with images of a male and female body obtained from CT and MRI scans and loaded as complete human forms.
- Developed the curriculum for the third and fourth years that include the longitudinal integrated clerkship, doctoring, Nevada Community Service, sub-internships and electives. See the curriculum map.
- Further developed a viable model for the school's third-year longitudinal integrated clerkship.
- Received NSHE Board of Regents approval to call the faculty practice plan "UNLV Medicine".
- Developed parameters for UNLV Medicine's faculty practice, business plan scenarios, parameters for affiliation agreements and necessary computer systems to purchase.
- Completed the following key components of the school's clinical operation: 1) establish a legal framework for a 501(C)3; 2) develop the governance structure; 3) write the faculty practice plan bylaws; 4) conduct the faculty practice's first board of directors meeting; and 5) elect officers to board.
- Received approval from the NSHE Board of Regents to open the school's first clinical patient care facility -- the UNLV Ackerman Center for Autism and Neurodevelopment Solutions. The new center opened July 6 and has since provided needed diagnostic, treatment and intervention therapy to more than 300 children.
- Negotiated a 10-year preliminary agreement with UMC to develop the region's first Academic Health Center. The medical school and UMC currently are negotiating a master affiliation agreement.
Medical School Transition
- Worked with the NSHE Board of Regents, Statewide Steering Committee, the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine (UNR-SOM) and UNLV leadership to transition UNR-SOM faculty members, residency and fellowship programs based in Las Vegas to the UNLV School of Medicine faculty practice plan by July 2017.
Current and Future Facilities
- Achieved approval from the NSHE Board of Regents on June 10, and the Clark County Commissioners on June 21, to transfer 9.11 acres located at 625 Shadow Lane to UNLV School of Medicine. The agreement also includes leasing space at 2040 W. Charleston from UMC for UNLV School of Medicine faculty and staff.
- Finalized renovation and improvements to the UNLV Shadow Lane Campus, Building B, to serve as the interim medical education facility for UNLV School of Medicine students. The space encompasses 20,000 square feet and includes classrooms for microscopy and demonstrations, virtual anatomy laboratory, a medical library, small group study rooms, a student lounge, recreational gym and student locker space.
- Finalized conceptual renderings of the medical school's first academic building with architects Tate Snyder Kinsey (TSK) and CO Architects. The design took into account the potential growth of the medical school, the need to house 200 clinicians, and plans to develop a Health Sciences Campus for UNLV, which could house the Schools of Nursing, Allied Health Sciences, and Community Health Sciences.
- Continued recruiting and hiring faculty and staff for UNLV School of Medicine. The medical school currently has 37 faculty members and staff.
Funding / Philanthropy
- Celebrated a $3 million grant from the UnitedHealth Foundation to support innovative programs in bioethics, hospitality in health care, and population health. The funding also supports planning for the School's multi-specialty community health clinics where third-year medical students will spend an entire year learning medicine and treating patients under the supervision of faculty physicians and other health professionals.
- Received more than $570,000 in new gifts and pledges and collected over $4.3 million in pledge payments toward the 135 Founding Scholarships and other gift commitments.
- Grew the annual giving base by launching the school's first Community Advisory Board and Dean's Circle ($1,000+) Annual Giving Campaigns with a focus on the UNLV School of Medicine Fund for Excellence. Gifts and pledges to the fund totaled more than $56,000 in 2016. The school also published its first issue of "Investing in Excellence," the medical school's new philanthropy e-newsletter.
- Continued work to establish a long-term development plan that will facilitate raising $350 million in philanthropic support by 2030.
- Held monthly meetings with UNLV School of Medicine Community Advisory Board and created four committees to focus on legislative, graduate medical education, development and clinical.
- Conducted more than 45 presentations highlighting the school's vision, educational program, academic health center, and progress made to date. The presentations were held for health care, education, business and civic groups to build community support.
- Tripled the UNLV Medicine Facebook and Twitter presence. The school posted more than 250 times to Facebook in 2016, reaching more than 509,000 people. Facebook "likes" now total 6,096. UNLV Medicine's Twitter had more than 250,000 impressions, and grew from 332 to 871 followers.
I am looking forward to another year of many incredible milestones, especially in July, when we welcome our charter class.
In case you missed the first issue of "Investing in Excellence" your connection to philanthropy at UNLV School of Medicine you an find it
. The issue highlights the medical school's preliminary accreditation celebration and a couple of its newest donors.
School of Medicine's Pamela Beal Dedicated to Giving Back
After receiving two kidney transplants over the last two decades, the associate dean of clinical affairs has dedicated her life to improving health care for others.
Once a former standout women's basketball star at Western New Mexico University, Pamela Beal was diagnosed with end-stage renal disease in her senior year of college. It ended her hoop dreams, and nearly her life. Now, the Louisiana native pays it forward through a career in health care.
Atul Gawande's bold visions for improving performance and safety in health care have made him one of the most sought-after speakers in medicine. His three books, Complications, Better, and The Check-list Manifesto, have all been highly praised inside and outside the medical community. His new book is Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End. TIME placed him among the world's 100 most influential thinkers. For more information click