Partnership Pulse, Winter 2019

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Partnership Pulse A Publication of the AU/UGA Medical Partnership

Vol. 8 | No.1 | Winter 2019

SERVING OUR HOMEBOUND SENIORS Gerontology Physician receives Award

Also In this issue... Students Take Home Research Awards

GLIDE: Interprofessional Event A Success

Students Provide Free Sports Physicals

Faculty, Staff, Students & Alumni Accolades

Partnership Pulse Vol. 8 | No 1 | Winter 2019

In This Issue... Letter from the Dean – 3 Class of 2022 – 4

Clinical Informatics Fellowship – 5 Student & Resident Research Symposium – 6 Georgia ACP Conference – 7 A Look Back – 8 Student Spotlight: Cyril Lukianov – 10

Augusta University and the University of Georgia have partnered to create a four-year medical

Free Sports Physicals to Athens Schools – 12

education program in Athens to help alleviate a statewide shortage of physicians that threatens

GLIDE Interprofessional Conference– 14 COVER STORY: Serving Our Seniors – 16 Gaines Receives National Award – 19 SP Highlight: Don Schneider – 20 Effective Communication – 21 Student Accolades – 22 Faculty & Alumnus Research Published – 23 Kennedy Presents at Columbia – 24 Faculty & Staff Accolades – 25 New Faculty & Staff – 26 Satonik Joins Medical Partnership – 27 Upcoming Events – Back Cover

the health of Georgians. The Partnership Pulse is published bi-annually for alumni, friends, and the medical community of Augusta University and the University of Georgia. Michelle A. Nuss, MD AU/UGA Medical Partnership Campus Dean 706-713-2183 |

DESIGN & LAYOUT Jennifer Stowe, MS


PUBLISHER AU/UGA Medical Partnership

CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Jennifer Adams, Lindsey Derrick


PHONE 706-713-2183

EDITOR Lindsey Derrick


Articles may be reprinted with permission from the editor. • Copyright © 2018 by the AU/ UGA Medical Partnership. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any way without permission from the editor.


AU PRESIDENT Brooks Keel, PhD AU-MCG DEAN David Hess, MD



AU/UGA Medical Partnership


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@auugamp The AU/UGA Medical Partnership is committed to principles of equal opportunity and affirmative action.


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Letter from the Campus Dean Happy New Year to everyone, and welcome to 2019! We have many exciting things happening at the Medical Partnership this upcoming year. As many of you know, we have embarked on a process to expand our class size from 40 to 60 students per class. This increase will keep us on track with the recommendations of the Tripp Umbach consultant report on medical education in Georgia which was completed in 2008. Expansion will start by ramping up to 50 students in the fall of 2020 and then 60 students every year after. In order to accommodate this increase in class size, renovations will begin to our classrooms and space in Russell Hall this May following graduation. Renovations will transform the second floor of Russell Hall to provide an expanded library space, more student learning small group rooms, a 4-bay simulation center as well as a clinical task trainer skills lab. Of course, all of this means we need more faculty and staff to support our teaching and learning. Therefore, this coming year, we will launch a major hiring initiative to bring more basic and clinical science educators to campus to assist with teaching. Although we are increasing our class size, we will continue to provide our signature, hybrid curriculum that utilizes small group teaching with predominantly active learning pedagogies that attract high quality medical students to our campus. I look forward to welcoming you all to an open house event this fall where we will showcase our new facilities! Thanks to each of you for your dedication to our students and to the success of the Medical Partnership. We’ve had some amazing accomplishments over the past year! It takes a team working together to have a successful educational program for our students. Every member of our team is vital to our success, vital to our day-to-day work and vital to us continuing to thrive. I also want to thank the leadership at UGA and Augusta University, along with our state leaders for the support you have shown our campus. I look forward to the changes coming our way in 2019 and cannot wait to share our progress with all of you. As always, thank you for your support. Michelle A. Nuss, MD Campus Dean AU/UGA Medical Partnership

The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue


The Class of 2022 joins the Medical Partnership The Augusta University/University of Georgia Medical Partnership welcomed 41 new Medical College of Georgia students to the Athens campus in August. The Class of 2022 represents a wide variety of faces and backgrounds. The group is split almost perfectly with 21 male and 20 females. They hail from cities all over the world, with most coming from the state of Georgia. Thirty students from the class are from Georgia, with Marietta being the most represented city. While the rest of the students have come from cities around the United States, we also have two students who have joined us from China.

Class of 2022

UGA is the most represented college with 19 of the new students holding an undergraduate degree from the university. Twelve students got their degree from other in-state colleges and universities—Georgia State (4) and Georgia Tech (3) were the next most represented Georgia institutions. The other 10 in the class got their education out of the state. UNC Chapel Hill topped the out-of-state numbers for the class with two students coming from this university. While keeping up with studies and excelling in the classroom are important, they also know a schoollife balance is key. The Class of 2022’s hobbies are just as unique as their backgrounds: they enjoy Harry Potter; watching Game of Thrones; playing football; reading; going to sporting events; baking; traveling; hiking; Marvel movies; playing guitar; backpacking; going to coffee shops; going to the movies; and watching Friends. The overall MCG 2022 class is just as diverse as the Medical Partnership campus—with over 3,100 applications, only 230 were admitted. There are 118 males and 112 females, and they come from 51 different colleges and universities. The overall GPA of the class is 3.8 with an average MCAT score of 510.7.

” ! e n o y l l i s “Do a 4

AU/UGA Medical Partnership

These distinguished and diverse students exemplify the future of healthcare in Georgia, and they are ready to face the upcoming challenges of medical school. The Class of 2022 has already survived its first semester, and we at the Medical Partnership are excited to see the great things they will accomplish during their time at the Athens campus.

Georgia’s First Clinical Informatics Fellowship Program for Physicians Launches in Athens With the use of electronic health records (EHRs) and other systems, medical professionals have access to more patient and population health information and data than ever before. Yet many who work in health care settings are not properly trained to interpret the variety of information at their fingertips. To address this need, the Augusta University/University of Georgia Medical Partnership and the University of Georgia College of Public Health have partnered with Athens-area health care providers, St. Mary’s Healthcare System, Piedmont Athens Regional, and the University of Georgia Health Center, to create the first Clinical Informatics Fellowship for physicians in the state of Georgia. There is so much patient data available to providers – lab tests and scans, notes from previous visits, prescription notes, said Dr. Dale Green, the fellowship’s director and associate professor in the College of Public Health, but “it’s not a given that all the information is available and accurate to the physician meeting with that patient in that moment. It takes someone thinking about how to bring that data together and make it usable.”

“... [this is] an opportunity to train our clinical informatics fellows with a population health focus, improving the health of all Georgians.” ~Dr. Dale Green

Clinical Informatics Fellowship Program Director

Training in clinical informatics provides clinicians with the skills necessary to collect and examine patient data, calculate patient health risks, and offer transformative care that not only improves the health and well-being of individual patients, but also impacts public health policy. The Clinical Informatics Fellowship program, accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), emphasizes expertise in population and public health informatics while preparing fellows for the full range of opportunities in clinical informatics. Over the course of the two-year program, trainees will be exposed to a variety of “real world” informatics experiences during their clinical rotations. In association with each clinical rotation, fellows will complete a series of practicums. Topics will include business and finance, satisfaction and quality improvement, privacy and security, population health, information sharing and connectivity, and clinical decision support. “The Clinical Informatics Fellowship is complementary to the graduate medical education programs we already offer here in Athens,” said Dr. Michelle Nuss, AU/UGA Medical Partnership campus dean. “We are excited to expand our program with this fellowship opportunity to new and practicing physicians to better equip them for the challenges of practicing medicine in the 21st century.” The Clinical Informatics Fellowship is closely affiliated with the College of Public Health’s Health Informatics Institute, and fellows will have various opportunities to get involved in ongoing scholarly projects at the college. “The College of Public Health is delighted to participate in this fellowship with the AU/UGA Medical Partnership and the Athens medical community to provide a population health perspective to our fellows. This program will expand our commitment to health informatics research and training, and to improving the health of all Georgians,” said interim dean Marsha Davis. The fellowship program is open to physicians trained and board certified in at least one other board recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS). Upon completion of the program, fellows are prepared for board certification in clinical informatics through the American Board of Preventative Medicine. The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue



Summer Research Symposium On October 22, students, residents, and guests gathered in George Hall for the Medical Partnership’s 8th annual Research Symposium. The Medical Partnership research symposium is an opportunity for students to expand their scholarly experiences and learn how medical knowledge is derived. They also learn how to frame a testable hypothesis, write a research proposal, carry out a project, evaluate scientific and medical data, and write up their results. It provides them with an opportunity to communicate their findings through presentations at local, regional, and sometimes national scientific meetings. While both medical students and residents from the AU/ UGA Medical Partnership Internal Medicine Residency Program and Piedmont Athens Regional had the opportunity to showcase their research work, the majority of presentations were second year medical students who completed their research in the summer between first and second year. Sarah Ellen Williams, a second-year student, looked deeper into the opioid crisis. She studied the city of Atlanta (specifically urine screened in Grady Memorial Hospital’s emergency department from January 2012 to December


AU/UGA Medical Partnership

2017) and found that lower income areas were more likely to choose cocaine as a drug of choice, while northern Atlanta and the suburbs turned to opioids. With the attention of policy makers fully on opioids, these lower income users may not get the adequate help they need. “I think that a person’s social situation has a gigantic impact on their overall health status,” said Williams. “My project is showing that social conditions in Atlanta are creating a subpopulation where national drug trends aren’t the norm. So, assuming that people in metro Atlanta follow national averages can be detrimental in diagnosing and treating some patients.” Williams said she enjoyed the symposium because she got to see what all her classmates had worked on, and the event gave them all the opportunity to present research in a low stress environment. “This also gave both myself and a significant number of my classmates an opportunity to go outside of Athens to work on projects that span a vast variety of fields,” she said. For a full list of presentations and abstracts, please email the Office of Communications and external Affairs at

Medical Partnership Attendees Honored at GA ACP Fifteen members of the Augusta University/University of Georgia Medical Partnership Internal Medicine Residency Program and two Medical Partnership students were selected to give abstract presentations at the Georgia Chapter of the American College of Physicians conference on October 12-14 at Callaway Gardens. The AU/ UGA Medical Partnership Internal Medicine Residency Program Director Dr. Achilia Morrow, expressed her excitement for the large group of residents who presented at the conference. “They exceeded my expectations, which were already high,” said Morrow. “I’m proud of our continued presence at this conference.” The Georgia ACP takes submissions each year for abstracts. Anyone who is currently a member of ACP, enrolled in a Georgia Internal Medicine program, or attending medical school in Georgia can submit an abstract based on one of three topics: clinical vignettes, research, and quality improvement. Once the abstracts are submitted, submissions are blinded and distributed to the judges. The ones with the highest scores are invited to present at the conference. All Medical Partnership residents, and one student, Shub Agrawal, completed abstracts focusing on a clinical vignette subject. Clinical vignettes tell a patient’s story and illustrate a rare disease, important teaching point, and/or uncommon presentation of a disease. Agrawal was awarded second place in the clinical vignette competition. “It was a case of one of the patients that I’d seen during my subinternship in Augusta, and we ended up diagnosing him with VZV meninogencephalitis, which is rare,” said Agrawal. “It was super cool to get second place. It was a rewarding experience, and I’m glad I’ve done at least one clinical vignette presentation pre-residency so I can hit the ground running when interesting cases come up in residency.” The second medical student, Kathleen Herring, competed in the quality improvement subject. This category focuses on improving patient safety and overall satisfaction. The posters of the attendees with the highest scores were invited to do an oral presentation. From the Internal Medicine Residency Program,

resident Rida Younus was selected for this outstanding honor. Two additional members of the Medical Partnership family were also recognized for their outstanding excellence. Cinthana Kandasamy, a fourth-year student, won the 2018 Outstanding Medical Student in Volunteerism and Advocacy Award. The award is based on the recipient’s selfless contributions to others. “I am very passionate about engaging in the community and making tangible, beneficial changes for those in need,” said Kandasamy. “I was extremely honored and humbled to have been nominated and subsequently selected for the award.” Dr. Jean Chin, Assistant Professor of Medicine, received the 2018 Community Based Teaching Award. This award looks at those in the medical field who give their time mentoring medical students and residents. Georgia Chapter Winners from the Medical Partnership: Cinthana Kandasamy - 2018 Outstanding Medical Student in Volunteerism and Advocacy Award. Dr. Jean Chin -2018 Community Based Teaching Award. Students who gave poster presentations: Shub Agrawal Kathleen Herring Residents who gave poster presentations: Waqas Ahmad Jane Fon-Ndikum Kristina Catania Sandeep Jalli Seth Courson Amit Koduri Mary De Croos Robyn-Ann Lee Hing Zachary Di Iulio Sarah Nuzzo

Caridad Padron Meet Shah Yousef Treki Walaa Treki

Resident who gave an oral presentation: Rida Younus

The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue


Top and bottom right: Students host the annual Trunk or Treat for local children on October 30. Bottom left: Children from the Boys and Girls Club of Athens attend Healthy Halloween. Those who made the trip got to compete in relay races, decorate pumpkins, go through a spooky obstacle course, and do a scavenger hunt.

John Collar and Debbie Shim take part in an MCG panel for pre-med UGA students at the Richard B Russell Library. The two networked with students and staff from the Augusta campus before answering questions from the attending students.


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The White Coat Ceremony was held on Saturday, October 6 in Augusta. The annual event marks the day when first-year students are presented their white coats.

For the Holiday Service Project, students spent the month of November collecting toys and goodies for local children. They wrapped the gifts and delivered them to a kindergarten class at Fowler Elementary.

The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue


STUDENT FEATURE: An Interview with Cyril Lukianov For this Student Spotlight, we’d like to introduce you to Cyril Lukianov. Lukianov is a second-year student at the Medical Partnership, and he comes to us from Tucker, Georgia. Lukianov serves as a Student Ambassador, and if you happen to ever visit the Medical Partnership, he may be one of the friendly faces giving you a tour of our beautiful campus.

Please tell us a little about yourself. I was born in Belarus, a small country in eastern Europe that some people know as “Europe’s last dictatorship”. My family immigrated to the United States when I was 11 years old, and I have lived here in Georgia since 2006. I really love our state, and I hope to continue my medical training and career here in Georgia. I did most of my undergraduate studies at Georgia Tech, and graduated with a degree in chemical and biomolecular engineering in 2017. I was focused heavily on protein engineering research as an undergraduate student and worked with Dr. Julie Champion and Dr. Sung In Lim to develop a nanocarrier for delivery of monoclonal antibody drugs to intracellular targets. I consider this one of my most transformative experiences: I learned invaluable scientific skills, and I also had a chance to attend numerous regional and national conferences and interact with fellow biomedical scientists. My hobbies include reading, music, cycling, and hiking. I love a good book, but so far it has been challenging to find time to read for pleasure during medical school. Athens has an awesome music scene, there is a great cycling community in town, and we are also very close to the amazing hiking trails in north Georgia. What is a typical day for you like? Very busy! During 2nd year, we have 2-4 hours of lecture in the morning Monday-Wednesday. Our curriculum also has a strong emphasis on small group case-based learning, so we spend 6 hours a week in groups of 8 working through a real-world clinical case related to the week’s learning objectives. I am involved in student government, and I am also the president of the sports medicine interest group, so some days I will spend an hour or so in meetings with other students or faculty. Apart from lectures, small group learning, and meetings, the main highlight of my typical day is… you guessed it: Studying! I am a big fan of the Carnegie library, I find it really difficult to focus in noisier places such as coffee shops. I also enjoy reviewing lectures and concepts with friends, I really believe that medical school is a team sport.


AU/UGA Medical Partnership

No matter how much studying I have to do, I always make an effort to incorporate into my daily schedule things that keep me healthy, focused, and motivated. Exercise at least 3-4 times per week is a must for me, and I am always involved with medical campus outreach and service projects through my local church here in Athens. It’s imperative for us as future healthcare providers to keep ourselves in good health and to be a positive influence in our local communities. What is something people may be surprised to know about you? Many people are surprised to know that I am very passionate about art, art history, and design. My undergraduate career centered almost entirely on math, science, and engineering, but I did take an Asian art history class in the spring of my freshman year. I greatly enjoyed the course and learned so much about the artistic traditions of different countries, religions, and cultures. Any chance I get I try to visit art galleries, musical performances, and exhibitions to learn more. What do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment? I consider graduating from Georgia Tech with highest honors my greatest accomplishment to date. It was a dream of mine and a long-term goal that I worked very hard to reach. I learned a lot about myself in the process, and the journey really prepared me well for the demands of medical school. What advice do you have for students just starting their journey in medicine? I would advise anyone interested in a career in medicine to spend time reflecting on what exactly draws them to medicine. It is a tremendously difficult and long journey, and one can truly succeed only if the underlying motivation is strong and pure. I did a great deal of self-reflection when I was deciding if and when to apply to medical school. I would also recommend not hesitating to reach out to those who can answer your questions. Pre-med advisors, college professors, practicing doctors, medical students, and others can give you a more personal insight and provide you with great guidance and invaluable mentorship. What motivated you to want to be a physician? I was always inspired by the power of the doctor-patient relationship. We have a very unique and amazing ability to make a difference in people’s lives, even in times when we think that we don’t have all the answers. I also wanted to be a leader and role model in my community. I think being a modern-day physician

requires one to get involved in local community issues, as well as national healthcare matters. I want to inspire others and make a positive difference. What do you hope to do after completing med school? I haven’t decided on a particular field or specialty quite yet, but I do know that I would like to spend some portion of my time actively engaged in clinical and/or basic science research. I really like figuring out why and how things work, as well as finding new solutions to problems. I hope that I can incorporate research into my clinical practice and have a broader impact on patient care and outcomes. Who are your role models?

all share a common goal of making MCG an even better medical school and Georgia a healthier state for everyone. What is your favorite thing to do at your campus? What is your favorite thing to do in Athens? My favorite thing to do on campus is definitely studying with my friends. Medicine is a team sport, so working together through a challenging case is, in my opinion, the single best way to learn the difficult material. My favorite things in Athens have to be the food and the music. There are so many great restaurants and cafes here, and the music scene is top-notch. Definitely come visit and check it out for yourself!

I don’t really have a single role model. I have been very inspired by the good qualities I see in my mentors, physicians I’ve worked with, professors, fellow classmates, etc. As a pre-med student, I greatly admired the work ethic and selflessness of physicians that I shadowed. I saw countless examples of sacrifice by physicians for the sake of the patient, and I think that’s an essential part of our profession. Why did you choose the Medical College of Georgia’s AU/UGA Medical Partnership Campus? For me, the campus decision was fairly simple. I know that I learn best in smaller, case-based, and team-oriented classes, which is what the AU/UGA Medical Partnership Campus offers. As an engineering student in undergrad, many of my classes focused on group projects and case-based learning, so I figured out that I really like that particular format. What has been your favorite or most powerful experience in medical school ? I spend a lot of time volunteering at the student-run clinic at Mercy Health Center here in Athens. It is an amazing opportunity to provide healthcare to the underserved and uninsured patients here in the Athens area, and this experience also opened my eyes to the numerous healthcare disparities that exist in our country. I’ve also learned many valuable teamwork skills, since the clinic is operated not just by medical student but also UGA pharmacy students. What has surprised you the most, or what would you like people to know about MCG? I am very proud of MCG’s vision and plan for both greatly expanding and improving healthcare in our state. I think as the Georgia’s only state medical school, MCG is doing an excellent job recruiting not only the best and the brightest students, but also those with the compassion and commitment to Georgia’s health. I was also greatly inspired by the alumni events I’ve attended so far. The MCG alumni association is really just one big family, and everyone is really invested in the success of current students. We

The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue



Medical Students Provide Free Sports Physicals to Athens Area Schools On Saturday, August 18, volunteers from the Augusta University/ University of Georgia Medical Partnership gathered at Clarke Middle School to provide free sports physicals to Clarke County School District athletes who otherwise may not receive a physical exam. Without this exam, students are ineligible to participate in team sports. It is not uncommon for many student athletes across Athens to be uninsured, or underinsured or unable to afford a physical exam. Over ninety percent of the 720 students attending Clarke Middle School receive either free, or reduced lunch. Dr. Suzanne Lester, assistant professor at the AU/UGA Medical Partnership, and Kelli Bivins, a teacher at Coile Middle School, became aware of this problem five years ago and brainstormed a way they could help. At the time, the Medical Partnership was in its infancy stages and the medical students were looking for ways to become involved in the Athens community. “Students put in a ton of effort to get their grades up so they can play sports, and then they often cannot get a sports physical because they are uninsured,” said Dr. Lester. “Not only are these physicals a benefit to the middle school students, but also they also give our medical students early experiences in delivering patient care and a way to learn about the areas they are serving.” 12

AU/UGA Medical Partnership

Dr. Lester works with the medical students and the athletic directors at local schools to plan a day for free sports physicals for both the fall, and spring semester. Medical students set up stations for height and weight checks, blood pressure monitoring, and vision screenings, then work with Medical Partnership faculty members and volunteer residents from Piedmont Athens Regional and the AU/UGA Medical Partnership Internal Medicine Residency Program at St. Mary’s to provide the exam. At this past event, volunteers saw thirty-nine students, but they have seen up to ninety at one event. Not only does this program allow middle school students to meet the requirements for a sports physical, but it also demonstrates potential career paths. Lester continued, “this event serves as an opportunity for the middle school students to see a diverse group of young doctors and realize that they also have the opportunity to be a physician, or work in healthcare related field one day.” When speaking about her experience this past Saturday, secondyear medical student Kendall Flanigan said, “Medical school can be consuming at times, and often as students, I think we forget the reason we’re studying as hard as we do - to one day serve people in our communities. I truly believe that children who are encouraged to genuinely enjoy sports and other kinds of physical activity can grow up to be healthier, happier adults, and from that, everyone wins.”

“This event serves as an opportunity for the middle school students to see a diverse group of young doctors and realize that they also have the opportunity to be a physician, or work in healthcare related field one day.” ~ Suzanne Lester, MD

Above: Fourth-year students Shub Agrawal and Nick Schoenmann take the medical history of student athletes at the school receiving a free sports physical.

The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue


GLIDE Program Fosters Interprofessional Collaboration

By: Camie Williams Acing your courses might be a solitary activity, but keeping patients healthy isn’t something one person can do alone. That was the take-away for pharmacy student Alfred Awuah and more than 250 students in three other disciplines who worked together October 24 in an experiential learning scenario designed to foster interprofessional collaboration throughout their careers.

medicine to treat the pain and the patient’s depression,” Awuah said of the scenario, which involved a woman with a broken arm and compartment syndrome who students later learned may have been a victim of domestic violence. “With the social work students, we started thinking about, ‘is it the most cost-effective treatment?’ and ‘what about readmission?’ ”

The event, funded in part by the Georgia Learning Through Interprofessional Development Experience, or GLIDE, program in the Provost’s Office, was designed to mimic real-life interdisciplinary work and show students how to work together in a team to address an issue. It brought together students from four academic programs: the Augusta University/UGA Medical Partnership, College of Pharmacy, School of Social Work and the Augusta University College of Nursing, which has a campus in Athens.

Susan Fagan, Distinguished Research Professor, Albert W. Jowdy Professor of Pharmacy Care and assistant dean in the College of Pharmacy, said she has dreamed of bringing students together for some time because she believes that teamwork can transform health care delivery.

“As a pharmacy student, I’m obviously thinking about the best

“All of our professions work in silos. We are learning similar things, but we don’t learn together,” she said. “These students are the future of health care. We are hoping we can change things by starting at this level.” Coordinating among different schools and colleges, different campuses and even two universities wasn’t easy, but Fagan said that the support from the GLIDE program and the Provost’s Office helped make the collaboration possible. “I think all of us benefit when we work together, respect each other and consider other perspectives,” she said. “Teamwork is required to solve many of the biggest challenges of our world.” Brannon Hicks, a first-year medical student in the Augusta University/UGA Medical Partnership, said the event taught him a lot about how other professions can provide resources for patients that physicians can’t. “It’s a good thing to know what everybody does and how they can help,” he said. “It’s eye-opening.”


AU/UGA Medical Partnership

Brannon Hicks, right, discusses a patient treatment scenario with Emily Smith, Lauren Wynn and Elizabeth Lally during an interprofessional training session on Oct. 24. (Photo credit: Mickey Montevideo)

Elizabeth Lally is pursuing a doctorate to become a nurse practitioner at the Augusta University campus in Athens while also working part time in the emergency department of St. Mary’s Hospital. She said that she has seen firsthand how patient care can improve when the entire team works together. “It’s interesting to see where we see things the same and where we see things differently,” she said. “We all want the same outcome; we all want our patients to benefit. Communication and interdisciplinary teamwork help to make that possible.” The health care exercise was the first to benefit from GLIDE program grant funding, but Russ Mumper, vice provost for academic affairs and chair of UGA’s interprofessional leadership committee, said he believes that the program will benefit students across campus. “Interprofessional education has been firmly established and affirmed in the health professions as a necessary practice to prepare future health professionals to improve team-based patient care and health outcomes,” Mumper said. “However, we are also very interested in expanding interprofessional education to disciplines beyond the health professions where diverse teams are needed to address very complex problems.”

The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue


SERVING OUR HOMEBOUND SENIORS Gerontology Physician receives ACCA Award

Dr. Don Scott discusses a treatment plan with Meals on Wheels client, Jacquelin Moses. Right, Scott does a basic physical exam on a client.


AU/UGA Medical Partnership

Each week

the Athens Community Council on Aging (ACCA) and their 200 volunteers deliver over 1300 meals to over 300 homebound adults in Clarke and Barrow counties. Some clients are older adults that have difficulty getting out, while others suffer from disabilities that prevent them from leaving their home. This service not only provides nutritious meals for these individuals, but the visits also serve as a safety check.

regular physician, but they often miss appointments or cannot make it due to their decreased physical function or transportation barriers.”

Many of ACCA’s Meals on Wheels clients are at an increased risk for medical emergencies, falls and other accidents. With physical frailty and transportation being the primary barriers to the outside world, it is often very difficult for these elders to get to their doctor appointments.

The needs of the Meals on Wheels clients vary. From adjusting their blood pressure medication, to organizing their prescription drugs, to helping them with proper dosages of their medications, and even providing home safety visits for those with mental health issues, Scott and his team see a variety of issues.

As one of the few practicing geriatric physicians in the Athens area, Augusta University/ University of Georgia faculty member, Dr. Don Scott was quick to recognize this growing problem after he began volunteering with the ACCA. He then reached out to Eve Anthony, Chief Executive Officer of the ACCA to see how he could help. “I was thrilled when we re-connected with Dr. Scott,” said Anthony, “he immediately recognized the challenges we face as an organization for those clients who are experiencing health and wellness issues, and the numerous meals on wheels clients who may not have a primary care provider.” Recognizing a need As the campus director of geriatrics and palliative care, Scott oversees the AU/UGA Medical Partnership Internal Medicine Residency program’s geriatrics rotation in partnership with Saint Mary’s Hospital. In 2016 the idea was conceived to establish a partnership between the residency program and the ACCA. While on their geriatrics rotation, the residents, along with Scott, would make home visits to the Athens area Meals on Wheels clients. This partnership would enable the Meals on Wheels clients to see a healthcare professional in the comforts of their home, while allowing the residents to see patients in their home environment.

The ACCA recommends clients to Scott’s team based on the highest level of need. So far, the internal medicine residents and Scott have visited over 30 homebound individuals in the Athens area and delivered over $5,000 of free care. Those numbers are continuing to grow.

One of Scott’s favorite stories is about a woman who needed the brakes repaired on her rollator. He made ACCA aware of the situation and they worked with a local bike shop to have them make that repair for her. Another visit led to helping a woman get her dog to a veterinarian to receive care. The most recent client Scott visited was living in a home without running water and basic necessities. Scott is currently working with the ACCA to assist in restoring the water. Antony said, “having Dr. Scott and the residents in the client’s home doing in-depth assessments gives us access to information on that particular client’s needs that we may not have. With Dr. Scott’s and the residents’ observations, we can provide additional resources and work with other agencies to help take care of those needs.” When asked, the clients are very appreciative of Scott and the residents. Jacqueline Moses said, “I love having Dr. Scott visit. It is more personalized than a standard doctor’s appointment and he can help me understand the physician’s orders.” For Scott, the reason for being there is simple, “before leaving, I always ask the client what the most important thing is we can do to improve your quality of life,” he said.

“My goal for the residents visiting the homebound clients is for the resident to understand what it means to be a frail, home bound older adult with unique needs within their own home,” says Scott. “Whether that need is primary care, or simply to adjust their walker, we want to help out anyway we can. Most clients have a

The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue


Teaching Empathy The objective of the residents visiting homebound adults is for them to develop increased empathy for frail, home-bound older adults and the day-to-day challenges they face. Going in these households gives the residents a new perspective on what is needed for good medical care, compared to only seeing patients in the hospital or office setting. The visits also allow the residents to develop better plans for the care of these vulnerable patients when they see similar elders in the future. Second year resident, Rida Younus says, “I have learned a lot from this rotation, especially in terms of what poverty really looks like and the sometimes, unfortunately, terrible conditions that patients are living in, the hurdles they have to go through to even make their way to the office to see us. All these things make you appreciate what you already have and make you want to make your patient’s life easier and provide them with all the right resources in the community that they may actually be unaware of.” This rotation enables the resident physicians to see to how their treatment plan impacts the patient. Younus continues, “this benefits the physician because it helps us truly access the patient as a whole, to not only address their medical needs but also their living conditions, which may sometimes make it hard for them to follow through with discussed plans in the office.” Anthony said, “through this partnership we are teaching a new group of physicians a greater understanding of the issues facing older adults.” Public Recognition In recognition of his hard work, Scott and the AU/UGA Internal Medicine Residency Program were awarded the 2018 ACCA’s Community Partner of the Year award. This award was created to recognize an outstanding community partner who has worked along ACCA in moving their mission forward. As an agency, the ACCA acknowledges it cannot meet the Athens community’s needs alone and recognizes they can do more when aligning their mission with others who share those same goals. When asked about Scott, Anthony said, “Dr. Scott has gone above and beyond to make himself a resource for our clients. His willingness to work with individuals through unusual circumstances allows ACCA to better serve their clients. He is a truly great ally to have in our corner.”


AU/UGA Medical Partnership

Julie K. Gaines, center, stands with Sheldon Kotzin, Member of the Friends of the National Library of Medicine Board and Chair of the DeBakey Award Committee, and Dr. Barbara Redman, President of the Friends of the National Library of Medicine.

Gaines Receives National Award Julie K. Gaines, MLIS, AHIP is honored by the Friends of the National Library of Medicine with the 2018 Michael E. DeBakey Library Services Outreach Award for her achievements as an outstanding outreach health sciences librarian. Established in the early 1990s, this award honors a practicing health sciences librarian who provides outstanding services to rural or underserved communities. Gaines was nominated by the Augusta University Director of Libraries, Brenda Seago, MLS, MA, Ph.D. Seago states, “Julie is truly a member of the medical school faculty and is an outstanding role model in all areas of academic life—scholarship, teaching excellence, and service, locally, regionally, and nationally.” Augusta University/ University of Georgia Medical Partnership Campus Dean, Michelle Nuss M.D., said, “our campus is truly lucky to have such an outstanding faculty member like Julie. I am so proud of her many accomplishments and all that she does to teach our students as an embedded librarian.” In her role as a medical librarian and core faculty member at the Medical Partnership, Gaines has contributed extensive work

towards lectures about evidence-based medicine; mentoring students and faculty through the process of obtaining information; helping all learners to discriminate the quality of information; and teaching students and faculty to use the literature to answer clinical and basic science questions both at the bedside and in the classroom. Gaines also plays a significant role in the community and population health components of the curriculum where there is an emphasis on self-directed and small group learning. Her mentorship and guidance of students’ community-based projects as a faculty coach for the Athens Community Council on Aging (ACCA) team has greatly enhanced the overall wellness of the underserved population of older adults. Outside the classroom, Gaines has contributed to research and collaborations on technology needs, including social, medical, and mobile technologies in academic and clinical settings. She was the first librarian accepted as a Service-Learning Fellow at the University of Georgia and also serves as the Chair of the Augusta Universities Library Faculty Assembly and the Chair of the Medical Library Association’s Grant and Scholarship Committee.

The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue



Don Schneider

For this edition of the Partnership Pulse, our Simulated Patient Volunteer spotlight is highlighting Don Schneider. Don has been volunteering as a Simulated Patient since the inception of the program in 2010 and has worked with nine Medical Partnership classes. He also recruited his wife to be an SPV three years ago! “Don is a dependable and experienced simulated patient,” said Tina Powers, Essentials of Clinical Medicine Program Coordinator. “He comes prepared, knowing the scripted case, and stays in character for all his encounters.” Simulated Patient Volunteers (SPVs) are individuals from the community who portray patients for the purpose of teaching medical students within an educational program. SPVs allow students to develop excellent bedside manner, data-gathering skills, and other clinical skills such as physical examination. Unlike a real patient, SPVs have the opportunity to provide the medical student with valuable feedback to help improve their ability to interact with patients. Training with SPVs has proven beneficial in helping medical students learn to become excellent physicians. “Don is a wonderful simulated patient. He is reliable, friendly, and provides our medical students with excellent feedback,” said Cheryl Kennedy, Med, Essentials of Clinical Medicine Senior Program Coordinator. “We are lucky to have him!” — I am currently 82 years old and was born in Philadelphia. I lived there for my early years through WW II, and then my family moved to New Jersey where I went to elementary and high school. After high school graduation, I worked three years for an electrician, then decided to go to what is now the College of New Jersey (then it was Trenton State College) to become a history teacher. I taught briefly after graduation in New Jersey, then went to graduate school at Peabody College (now part of Vanderbilt) and taught and supervised in my curriculum area in history/social studies in an experimental public school—Nova Junior/ Senior High School— in Broward County, Florida. Within a few years, I moved to the Scotch Plains, New Jersey school system as a supervisor in the social studies area. In 1968, I came to UGA as a faculty member in the College of Education to prepare and work with teachers in history and social sciences. I was invited by a faculty department head who had previously 20

AU/UGA Medical Partnership

worked in a Florida college that placed student teachers in our Nova school. He got to know me, and when he came to UGA he thought my experience would be useful in teacher training. I decided to come to UGA after two years of his invitations. I became a faculty member in Social Science Education and held positions in administration within the college at various times during my three decades at UGA. I retired from UGA in December 1999. I learned about the opportunity to assist in the medical education training program through an announcement that came to the College of Education sent to retirees (OLLI at UGA). I joined as a simulated patient in the medial training program when a number of us were invited to come and find out about the program and the role volunteers could play. It was the first year the medical campus got under way and was seeking volunteers. I volunteered because it seemed interesting and useful to help the medical students, and to learn about the training program for physicians. As a former teacher and curriculum supervisor in public schools, and after three decades serving as a faculty member in the UGA College of Education helping to prepare future teachers, it certainly seemed to fit with my personal experience and background. It also seemed possible that we as volunteers might also learn some things about our own physicality and what physicians need to do to work with patients. I continue to volunteer as a “patient” because I see it as a useful contribution to the training program. We can see the medical students learning and growing in their field. It was especially meaningful when I attended the first community celebration ceremony and watched the students receive their residency appointments. My years of experience as a simulated patient have been interesting and rewarding. I have come to understand what prospective physicians must learn and how they really need to work with patients, converse with and respond to them. I have also learned from the cases where we serve as “sick” patients how we should present and explain our problems, what to look for in prospective physician’s responses and how to manage the interactions at least from the patient’s perspective. It is good not only for these training interactions, but with our own potential interactions with our own personal physicians. Circumstances permitting, I would like to continue in this volunteer role for at least a few more years.

Resident speaks about Effective Communication between Physicians & Patients As soon as Meet Shah began his residency at Augusta University/ University of Georgia Medical Partnership Internal Medicine Residency Program, in partnership with St. Mary’s Healthcare System, he could feel that it was the right place. “Right from the moment we were welcomed to St. Mary’s, I appreciated the warmth that was evident in this program,” said Shah. “With the backing of strong sponsoring institutions, there are plenty of opportunities to pursue my personal goals. Also, being part of a relatively new program is a great opportunity to get involved with shaping the program for future residents.” Shah, 29, is currently in his second year of the residency program. He was born in Ahmedabad, India and moved to the United Kingdom in 2004. He received both his undergraduate degree and his medical degree from the University of Manchester. “I have always been interested in the workings of the human body and have been fascinated by the ability to make changes and improve overall health,” said Shah. He also participated in a two-year program at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust in Preston, England. This is a program that all doctors in the U.K. undertake before deciding their preferred specialty and continue further training. On November 2, 2018, Shah made his way to the Athens-Clarke County Recycling Division to speak to local government officials about effective communication between physicians and patients. Athens-Clarke County offers its employees opportunities to participate in physical activities throughout the year. One event that was offered was an opportunity for interested employees to talk to a physician about effective patient-doctor communication and how to get the most out of appointments with physicians. “My presentation centered around talking about preventive care and what is part of annual screening as recommended by different institutions,” said Shah. “As part of the talk, I made a small table with a lot of information on preventive health items by age group. We talked about signs of disease and when they would need to see a physician, the differences between wellness visits versus visits for medical problems, how to visit a physician if you are worried about finances affecting your healthcare, and how to be efficient during appointments to get more problems addressed per visit.” Good patient-physician interaction is a topic that is important to Shah because he believes communication is at the heart of good healthcare.

“It is one of the most common reasons for patient dissatisfaction and a source of frustration for healthcare providers,” he said. “Whenever there is a patient interaction, providers should be aware of their ideas and expectations, which is sometimes lacking. In the same way, patients should be aware of the providers limitations and constraints in the current healthcare environment. Having an open dialogue and being able to answer personal questions is one of the best ways to be able to clear the air.” Shah has also submitted case reports to the Georgia Chapter of ACP (American College of Physicians) and had the opportunity to attend the national American College of Cardiology conference in March 2018 where he presented a poster on a case he encountered during his training in England. After his residency is complete, Shah plans to pursue a career in cardiology. Shah said his surroundings in early childhood made him realize his path to become a doctor. “Having grown up in India, I appreciate the ability to be in a position to help people in need, especially with their health. My vocation now allows me to do that.”

The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue



Students take home award at GAFP Conference & MAG meeting Second-year students, Jakob Feeney, Silki Modi, and Kyle Royalty, presented their M1 community health project (Decreasing inappropriate emergency department use among Mercy Health Center patients) at the Medical Association of Georgia annual meeting at Jekyll Island and won best project in the public health division; also presented the same project at the Georgia Academy of Family Physicians Annual Research Poster Competition and won first place. On Saturday, October 20, many different units from UGA came together to discuss the opioid epidemic facing our state and country at the UGA Interdisciplinary Opioid Epidemic Symposium. Several of our students worked with UGA law students and Emory University’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. Moving Away from the “Narcotic Contract” in Primary Care Practice – Law and Medical Students Design a Controlled Substance Agreement for the Georgia Practitioner; Kathleen Herring1, Wade Herring2, James Cho1, Devaunsh Thaker1, Danny On1 1M.D. Student at the AU/UGA Medical Partnership; 2 J.D. Student at the University of Georgia School of Law Urban Hotspots: Geographic Variation of Cocaine and Opiate Use among Individuals Presenting to an Urban, Safety Net, Emergency Department; SE Williams1, R Cotes2 1Medical Scholars Program, Augusta University/University of Georgia Medical Partnership, Athens, GA; 2Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA The Opioid Epidemic and Clinical Guidelines in the Emergency Department; Michael Scott, Avi Aronov, Zachary Datillo, Matthew Schwartz, Jason Jeong ( all AU/UGA Medical Partnership students).

NEW STUDENT AMBASSADORS named from CLASS OF 2022 Emily Anderson Andrew Brodmann Megan Chesne Matthew Cornelison Joel De Rosa Hannah Harrison Brannon Hicks 22

AU/UGA Medical Partnership

Lindsey Kangas Alex Kollhoff Miya Oliver Taylor Tabb Leah Topper Gurshawn Tuteja

Second-year student, Tony Huynh, published: Arceoa, RS, Runner RP, Huynh TD, Gottschalk MB. Schenker ML, Moore Jr. TJ. Disparities in follow-up care for ballistic and non-ballistic long bone lower extremity fractures. Injury. 2018 Dec;49(12):2193-2197. doi: 10.1016/j. injury.2018.09.053

Alumnus & Faculty Research Published in Hematology Journal The plenary paper, “Glutamine via α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase provides succinyl-CoA for heme synthesis during erythropoiesis,” which features students and faculty from the Augusta University/ University of Georgia Medical Partnership, the University of Georgia department of biochemistry and molecular biology, and the University of Georgia department of microbiology was recently published, highlighted, and given commentary in the journal Blood, the publication of the American Society for Hematology. The first author of the paper is AU/UGA Medical Partnership class of 2018 graduate, Dr. Joseph Burch. Burch is a MD/ Ph.D. graduate from the Medical College of Georgia and UGA’s Biomedical and Health Sciences Institute. He is currently doing his residency in Internal Medicine at Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, NC. The paper addresses how erythroid cells acquire sufficient carbon for heme synthesis during erythropoiesis — red blood cell production — according to the commentary by Tracey A. Rouault, M.D., of the National Institutes of Health. “These findings overturned long-accepted conventional assumptions about how heme, one essential component of hemoglobin, is synthesized for red blood cells and have implications in understanding the causes and treatments of anemias, particularly during chronic infections,” said Amy Medlock, associate professor at UGA and the AU/ UGA Medical Partnership and co-author of the paper along with UGA graduate student, Jason Marcero. The work was performed in collaboration with the NIDDK-Sponsored Center for Iron & Hematology Disorders at the University of Utah School of Medicine.

Above: Overview of cellular metabolism for heme synthesis during early and late erythropoiesis. Below: Drs.Joseph Burch and Amy Medlock collaborated on this research while Dr. Burch was a student at the Medical Partnership and continued upon his graduation.

According to the paper, it was previously “logical to assume that the carbons of succinyl-CoA were derived from metabolism of glucose through the usual source of succinyl-CoA,” but researchers found “glutamine supplied much more carbon to heme than glucose, whereas a succinate compound downstream of succinyl-CoA in the citric acid cycle contributed almost no carbon,” Reouault writes. “Their discoveries explain how developing erythroid cells can maintain a functional citric acid cycle, even during periods when metabolic activity is heavily skewed toward heme synthesis,” Rouault continues. Glutamine via α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase provides succinylCoA for heme synthesis during erythropoiesis is available at

The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue


Kennedy Presents at International Transformative Learning Conference at Columbia University On November 9, Cheryl Kennedy, our Essentials of Clinical Medicine Senior Program Coordinator, spoke at the Transformative Learning Conference at Teachers College at Columbia University in New York City. Kennedy presented a paper entitled A Transformative Learning Experience for Medical Students, and it explored the potential for transformative learning in immersive medical experiences. Transformative learning is the process of taking students out of their comfort zone and the world view they are used to seeing and putting them into a different environment. It forces them to assess their surroundings and adapt. The idea is then to take the experience and apply it to their patients back in their world. Kennedy’s paper examined the experience of participating undergraduate students who took a trip to Haiti in 2016. The students embarked on the trip to get a fist-hand look at the recovery effort from the 2010 earthquake and the constant poverty that the country faces. They got to see a culture that lives on limited financial resources and scarce medical treatment.


AU/UGA Medical Partnership

Kennedy’s conclusion of the paper stated that the students did indeed experience transformative learning by their experience. She writes: The medical students were placed in stressful and disorienting situations without the support of the medical resources that they have come to rely on in their training in the United States. Their experience in Haiti has shown them that health care is not equal for all. Affordability, access, and the meeting of basic human needs may not be the same for everyone on a global level. It appears that this immersive medical experience did provide the foundation for transformative learning. By immersing undergraduate medical students in communities of individuals different from themselves, we can create the space that allows for a questioning, examining, and revising of their perspectives and provides the support for transformative learning. “Speaking at the conference was so exciting,” said Kennedy. “Not only did I have the opportunity to showcase some of our student learning, but I also shared my own learning in the process. It was a wonderful experience and I look forward to presenting again in the future.”

FACULTY & STAFF ACCOMPLISHMENTS Latonda Knight, MBA, C-TAGME, graduate medical education coordinator and Abby Ward, MEd, C-TAGME ,internal medicine residency program coordinator The GME office is now 100% TAGME certified: After completing the application process and certification examination,Latonda and Abby are now 2018 National Board Certified Members of the Training Administrators of Graduate Medical Education (TAGME). TAGME promotes excellence in management of graduate medical education training programs through certification. Shelley Nuss, MD, campus dean, published: Nuss MA, Hill JR, Cervero RM, Gaines JK, Middendorf BF. The development of newly recruited clinical teachers at a unique regional medical school campus. Journal of Regional Medical Campuses. 2018;1(4). jrmc.v1i4.1041.

Matt Boegehold, PhD, chair of basic sciences, published: Tang JM, Shi N, Dong K, Brown SA, Coleman AE, Boegehold MA, Chen SY. Response gene to complement 32 maintains blood pressure homeostasis by regulating α-adrenergic receptor expression. Circ Res. 2018 Oct 12;123(9):10801090. doi:10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.118.313266.

Jonathan Murrow, MD, campus associate dean for research, was nominated for Piedmont Heart Institute Physician of the Year. Dr. Murrow also presented at the Georgia American College of Cardiology Meeting on a panel discussion, “Optimal Medical Therapy for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention”.

Michele Monteil, MB.BS, PhD, professor of immunology, published: Alisangco JB, Kriegel D, Monteil MA. Di George syndrome. [In Press] In: Essential Evidence Plus[Internet]. Hoboken (NJ): John Wiley & Sons, Inc. c 2019.

Gerald Crites, MD, Med, campus associate dean for faculty affairs and development, published: Blanchard, R.D., Howley, L., Nagler, A, Crites, G. Experiences of Health Professions Educators Utilizing Multiple Institutional Review Boards for Collaborative Research. Medical Science Educator. 2018. 28: 715.

Amy Baldwin, PhD, associate professor of microbiology, recently visited Grenada with her collaborator Dr. Jane McPherson (UGA School of Social Work) to carry out local focus groups with the goal of planning culturally acceptable highrisk HPV testing in Grenadian women.

Amy Medlock, PhD, assistant professor of biochemistry, received a research grant from the University of Utah Center for Iron & Hematology Disorders (Sponsor: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases). The title of her project is “Creation of Transgenic Zebrafish with Erythroid Expressed Heme Sensors”.

Jaroslava Halper, MD, PhD, professor of pathology, published: Young M, Moshood O, Zhang J, Sarbacher CA, Mueller POE, Halper J. Does BMP2 play a role in the pathogenesis of equine degenerative suspensory ligament desmitis? BMC Res Notes. 2018 Sep 18;11(1):672. doi: 10.1186/s13104-0183776-9

Julie K. Gaines, MLIS, AHIP, campus director of

Don Scott, MD, MPH, campus director of geriatrics and palliative care, was accepted into Educational Innovation Institute’s (EII) Educational Research Fellowship at Augusta University.

the AU/UGA Medical Partnership library, has become a member of The Academy of Health Information Professionals at the Distinguished Level. This is the credentialing academy for health sciences librarians. She also published: Gaines JK, Blake L, Kouame G, Davies KJ, Ballance D, Thomas Gaddy V, Gallman E, Russell M, Wood E. Partnering to Analyze Selection of Resources by Medical Students for Case-Based Small Group Learning: A Collaboration between Librarians and Medical Educators. Med Ref Serv Q. 2018 Jul-Sep;37(3):249-265.

New claims are allowed for a 2013 patent filed by a group out of Vanderbilt University that includes Frank Block Jr., MD, professor of anesthesiology, and his son, Frank Block III. The patent is part of the “Organ on a Chip” project at Vanderbilt, and the father and son team worked on the patent before Block Jr. made his way to the Medical Partnership in 2015. The idea is to put organ cells (heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, brain) into microcages and create a “microhuman” that could be used to model the effects of biological or chemical weapons in the human body and hopefully be able to create an antidote in days instead of years. The system could also be used for drug testing. Block III F, Samson PC, Werner E, Markov D, Reiserer RS, Mckenzie JR, Cliffel DE, Matloff WJ, Block Jr. FE, Scherrer JR, Tidwell WH, Wilkswo JP (2017) U.S. Patent No. 10,119,622. Nashville, TN. U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue


NEW FACULTY & STAFF Ellen House, MD Assistant Professor of Psychiatry Office of Academic Affairs

The Medical Partnership family has grown this past year, and we are grateful to welcome the following new faculty and staff members during this time of change and expansion.

Flint Buchanan, MFA, MEd Instructional Designer/Technologist Office of Faculty Development & Affairs

Lisa Lor Adminstrative Associate II Office of Academic Affairs

Brittany Genaro, MPH Administrative Support Office of Graduate Medical Education

Tristan McGarity Student Affairs Professional III Office of Student & Multicultural Affairs

Narayana Gowda, MD Chief Resident Internal Medicine Residency Program

Vicki McKinney, PhD Campus Director of Phase 3 Curriculum Office of Academic Affairs

Courtney Gray Program Coordinator II Office of Academic Affairs

Marla Tschepikow, MD Assistant Professor of Medicine Office of Graduate Medical Education

Joseph Greco, III, MD Assistant Professor of Surgery Office of Academic Affairs

Jennifer Wares, MD Site Clerkship Director of Emergency Medicine Office of Academic Affairs

NEW MCG CHAIRS & CHIEF Dr. Richard Lee Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery Lee comes to Augusta after serving as co-director of the Center for Comprehensive Cardiovascular Care at St. Louis University School of Medicine. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois College of Medicine in Chicago and earned his MBA at Washington University. Lee completed his surgery residency at Rush University, cardiothoracic surgery residency at Washington University, followed by an adult cardiac surgery and heart transplantation fellowship at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation.


AU/UGA Medical Partnership

Dr. Fernando L. Vale Neurosurgery Chair Vale previously was the vice chair of the Department of Neurosurgery and Brain Repair at the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine and will officially join MCG on February 1. He is a 1991 graduate of the University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine in San Juan and completed his neurosurgery training at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Hospital in 1997.

Dr. Sharad Ghamande Obstetrics and Gynecology Chair Ghamande was most recently the executive vice chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and has been at MCG for nearly 20 years. He also serves as chief of the department’s Section of Gynecologic Oncology and associate director for clinical research and trials at the Georgia Cancer Center. He earned his medical degree from Bombay University in India, completed his obstetrics and gynecology residency at Boston Medical Center and Boston University, and his gynecologic oncology fellowship at Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, NY.

Satonik Named Campus Assistant Dean for Clinical Curriculum at AU/UGA Medical Partnership Dr. Robert Satonik has been named Campus Assistant Dean for Clinical Curriculum for the Augusta University/ University of Georgia Medical Partnership in Athens, Georgia. Satonik will also hold the academic rank of Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University. Satonik comes to the Medical Partnership from Western Michigan University Homer Stryker MD School of Medicine in Kalamazoo, Michigan where he held the role of Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine since 2015. Before his time at Western Michigan, Satonik also served as a faculty member at Central Michigan and Michigan State where he was instrumental in developing new clinical sites and community partnerships for student learning. Through his leadership and direction, he developed relationships with community leaders to engage clinicians to educate students. Satonik received his medical degree from Northeast Ohio Medical University and completed his residency in emergency medicine at Richland Memorial Hospital in Columbia, SC. He has been in practice for more than 20 years in emergency medicine at various hospitals and facilities in Michigan and California including time as a General Medical Officer in the United states Navy. “It’s exciting to add someone like Dr. Satonik to our faculty,” said Campus Dean Michelle Nuss, M.D. “He has more than two decades of experience in academic medicine and brings expertise in both emergency medicine, and teaching students during their clerkship years. Through his leadership, we hope to continue to grow our educational mission for our students in their clinical years of medical school. We are thrilled to have Dr. Satonik on board and are looking forward to the vast amount of knowledge he has to share with our students and faculty.”

In his new role, Satonik will be responsible for ongoing support and recruitment of clinical sites for student learning. He will also oversee the year 3 & 4 curriculum development and implementation, student assessment and grading, and course evaluation and reporting.

Faculty, Staff, Students & Alumni: Did you win an award, have an article published, or an abstract accepted to a conference? Let us know so we can share the good news! Email the Medical Partnership’s Office of Communications & External Affairs at Please include all pertinent information related to the award, publication, or conference, such as the journal name or professional association, publication citation, and a brief description of the award or article. The PARTNERSHIP PULSE — Winter 2019 Issue


UGA Health Sciences Campus 108 Spear Road Athens, Georgia 30602

gifts matter

In 2010, the White Coat Scholarship Initiative was launched with a goal of increasing access to public medical education in Georgia. The fundraising teams at Augusta University and the University of Georgia are working together on this critical program, and we need your help. Among the first academic priorities of the White Coat Scholarship Initiative is to increase scholarships to attract talented students while also removing the burden of student debt, which can discourage students, especially those of limited financial means, from entering the medical profession. For those who do enter and complete medical school, high levels of student debt are a disincentive to serve in medically underserved areas or to choose specialties where the need is greatest, such as primary care. We need your help to ensure that financial obstacles don’t deter students from serving a state with an urgent need for more physicians. Donations can be made online or with the enclosed envelope, and all donations are tax-deductible.

UPCOMING EVENTS AOA/GHHS/DCHS Celebration Ceremony: Monday, February 11th

Mark your calendar! Open House Saturdays: March 2nd & 30th, beginning at 10:30 am

Class of 2019 Match Day: Friday, March 15th in George Hall

Paul Lombardo Lecture: Wednesday, March 20th in George Hall

Keep a look out for more upcoming events on our social media!

Class of 2019 Community Celebration: Saturday, May 11, 2019