Dianne Austin, director of Diversity, Inclusion and Engagement for Human Resources, will be honored with the Spirit of Fire Award at the Oct. 20 Audre Lorde Cancer Awareness Brunch. Each year, the award is given to an accomplished woman who has served as an exceptional leader in cancer services, awareness or advocacy. Austin was chosen based on her dedication to health justice, passion for serving the underserved and commitment to advocacy. The 20th Annual Audre Lorde Cancer Awareness Brunch – named in memory of Lorde, a cancer survivor who documented her 14-year battle against the disease in The Cancer Journals and her book of essays A Burst of Light – is a celebration of women of color and their supporters whose lives have been affected by cancer.

 

The MGH Center for Diversity and Inclusion hosted their annual reception to honorawardees at an event Sept. 17. Adeline Boatin, MD, global health director in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Renee Salas, MD, MPH, MS, of the Department of Emergency Medicine, each received a 2018 Clinician-Teacher Development Award  sponsored by the Mass General Physicians Organization  and J. Sawalla Guseh, MD, of Cardiology Division, and Camille E. Powe, MD, co-director of the MGH Diabetes in Pregnancy Program, each received a 2018 Physician/Scientist Development Award  sponsored by the MGH Executive Committee on Research. Boatin was recognized for her project, “A Hybrid Effectiveness-Implementation Study of Wireless Physiologic Monitoring among Postpartum Women in Uganda,” and Salas for her work, “Impact of Billion-Dollar Weather and Climate Disasters on Healthcare Utilization, Outcomes, and Cost for Elderly Medicare Beneficiaries: Implications for Educational, Community Service, and Advocacy Initiatives.” Guseh was recognized for his work “Evaluation of functional microRNA regulators of cardiac regression and atrophy,” and Powe for her project titled, “A Precision Approach to Gestational Diabetes Mellitus: Characterizing Genetic and Physiologic Subtypes.” Pictured, from left, Salas, Boatin, Guseh and Powe

 

Sylvie Breton, PhD, of the Division of Nephrology and the Center for Systems Biology, top, and Jill M. Goldstein, PhD, executive director of the Women, Heart and Brain Global initiative, bottom, have been named as the inaugural incumbents of two new endowed Mass General Research Institute Chairs, These recognitions were made possible through the generous bequest from the late Marjorie Moerschner in honor of her parents. Breton – the Richard Moerschner Endowed MGH Research Institute Chair in Men’s Health – studies the regulation of epithelial cells in the urogenital tract with an emphasis on the kidney and epididymis. Goldstein is the Helen T. Moerschner Endowed MGH Research Institute Chair in Women’s Health. Goldstein studies the co-occurrence of depression and heart disease, its impact on memory decline and Alzheimer’s disease, and translation of research findings into sex-informed therapeutics and global policy initiatives.

 

Six MGHers have received KL2/Catalyst Medical Research Investigator Training(CMeRIT) Awards from Harvard Catalyst. They are: David Chung, MD, PhD,Neurology Department; Lindsay Fourman, MD, Neuroendocrine and Pituitary Tumor Clinical Center; Sanjat Kanjilal, MD, MPH, Infectious Disease Unit; Jacob Lazarus, MD, PhD, Infectious Disease Unit; Michael Osborne, MD, Cardiology Division; and Maggie Samuels-Kalow, MD, Emergency Medicine and Pediatrics. The program provides advanced training in clinical and translational research to senior fellows and junior faculty from all health professions represented by Harvard Catalyst, including medicine, dentistry and nursing. Awardees will pursue a mentored research project in their area of expertise.

 

Georges El Fakhri, PhD, founding director of the Gordon Center for Medical Imaging, was elected Fellow to the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI) during a special plenary session at the society’s 2018 annual meeting for his contributions to quantitative PET/CT/MR imaging. The SNMMI Fellowship recognizes distinguished service to the society as well as exceptional achievement in the field of nuclear medicine and molecular imaging. The SNMMI is an international scientific and medical organization with more than 16,000 members dedicated to raising public awareness about nuclear medicine and molecular imaging through journals and meetings and leading advocacy on key issues that impact molecular imaging and therapy research. El Fakhri pictured third from right

 

Donna Jarrell, MGH attending veterinarian and director of the MGH Center for Comparative Medicine, has been elected vice president-president of the American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine (ACLAM). During the next four years she will service as vice president, president-elect, president then past president. ACLAM is a specialty board recognized by the American Veterinary Medical Association as the certifying organization for laboratory animal medicine, a recognized specialty within the veterinary medical profession. It encourages education, training and research in laboratory animal medicine; establishes standards of training and experience for veterinarians professionally involved with the care and health of laboratory animals; and recognizes qualified persons in laboratory animal medicine, through certification examination and other means.

 

Darshan Mehta, MD, MPH, medical director for the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at the MGH, recently met with The Honorable Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India. During their talks, Mehta presented the importance of incorporating mind body medicine within a complex health care system. The government of India continues to engage with the Benson-Henry Institute about ways to promote research and innovation of mind body medicine. Pictured, from left, Kanchan Banerjee, Boston Center of Excellence for Health and Human Development; Modi; Bal Ram Singh, MD, Boston Center of Excellence for Health and Human Development; and Mehta

 
The MGH has been named to the No. 1 position on Indeed.com’s list of Best Hospitals to Work for in 2018. Based solely on reviews posted by current, former and prospective employees on Indeed.com’s company pages, the award identifies organizations who are leading the pack in employee experience. Reviews on Indeed.com praised the hospital’s challenging but supportive work environment, benefit offerings and workplace diversity.
 

The MGH has been awarded funding for its innovative, cutting-edge initiative through the SHIFT-Care Challenge by the Massachusetts Health Policy Commission. The MGH’s initiative enhances access to treatment for opioid use disorder. Through a partnership with the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program (BHCHP), MGH will expand existing treatment protocols for pharmacologic treatment in the Emergency Department to BHCHP’s patient population. Representing each region of the Commonwealth, SHIFT-Care Challenge initiatives aim to reduce avoidable acute care utilization by investing in evidence-based, innovative care delivery models that are community-based, collaborative and sustainable. The emphasis of the SHIFT-Care Challenge is to strengthen partnerships among community-based organizations, Accountable Care Organizations, and hospitals and health systems. The goal also is to contribute to the emerging evidence that addressing health-related social needs and providing timely access to behavioral health services can result in overall cost savings to the health care system.

 

Noelle Saillant, MD, of the Department of Surgery, has received a 2018 Charles McCabe Faculty Prize for Excellence in Teaching from Harvard Medical School (HMS) in recognition of her outstanding teaching in Surgery. Since 1982, this honor has recognized the most outstanding teachers, a highly select group of the school's leading medical educators. The prize is HMS's most visible recognition of teaching accomplishments, named in memory of Charles McCabe, MD, who was a beloved teacher of HMS students.

 

Jeffrey Schweitzer, MD, PhD, of the Department of Neurosurgery, has been named the inaugural incumbent of the George Lopez, MD Endowed Chair in Neurosurgery. This was the first MGH Endowed Chair for the Department of Neurosurgery, made possible through the generosity of Lopez. This chair will advance research, care and education in neurosurgery. Lopez also gave an additional gift to the MGH to create the George A. Lopez, MD Neurosurgical Cell Therapy Research Fund. This fund enables Schweitzer to collaborate with his colleague, Kwang-Soo Kim, PhD, of McLean Hospital, to advance Parkinson’s research. Pictured, from left, Peter L. Slavin, MD, MGH president; Lopez; Schweitzer; and Bob Carter, MD, PhD, chair of Neurosurgery

 

Karen Sepucha, PhD, director of the Health Decision Sciences Center, and Leigh Simmons, MD, medical director of the Health Decision Sciences Center, were awarded a contract from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to address an important gap in the understanding of how to support clinicians and older patients in making good decisions about whether to continue colorectal cancer screening. The study, Promoting Informed Decisions about Cancer Screening in Older Adults (PRIMED Study), will advance understanding of how to best communicate evidence of cancer screening benefits and harms to older adults and is well aligned with PCORI’s mission. “This project was selected for PCORI funding not only for its scientific merit and commitment to engaging patients and other stakeholders, but also for its potential to fill an important gap in our health knowledge and give people information to help them weigh the effectiveness of their care options,” said Joe Selby, MD, MPH, PCORI executive director.

 

Mark G. Shrime, MD, MPH, PhD, FACS, otolaryngologist at Massachusetts Eye and Ear, has been awarded the 2018 Arnold P. Gold Foundation Award for Humanism in Medicine by the American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery. This award recognizes members committed to practicing otolaryngology with compassionate, patient-centered care. Shrime’s academic pursuits focus on surgical delivery in low- and middle-income countries, where he has a specific interest in the intersection of health and impoverishment. His work aims to determine optimal policies and platforms for surgical delivery that maximizes health benefits while simultaneously minimizing the risk of financial catastrophe faced by patients. Shrime was the first to identify a novel independent prognostic indicator in head and neck cancer. He has worked and taught in Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Benin, Togo, Congo, Haiti, Saudi Arabia and Madagascar.

 

Kate Traynor, RN, MS FAACVPR, director of the MGH Cardiovascular Disease Prevention Center, has been elected president of the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (AACVPR) Board of Directors. The board is responsible for developing the organization’s strategic plan and making fiscal and policy decisions that align AACVPR activities with its mission and vision and result in significant benefit to its members. AACVPR is comprised of health professionals who serve in the field of cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation and is committed to the continued professional development of its members through networking and educational opportunities.

 

Excellence in Action

The MGH receives hundreds of letters a year thanking staff and commending coworkers. These letters are a small glimpse into the work done at the hospital every day. Excellence in Action awards are presented by Peter L. Slavin, MD, MGH president, to those who – without one of these letters – might have gone unrecognized. Three awards were recently given to extraordinary MGHers:

Michael Watkins, MD, a surgeon in the Division of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, was recognized for his dedication to a patient in severe pain after her surgery. The patient called after hours to request pain medication and upon receiving the message, Watkins le