Department of Medicine

Department of Medicine

  Division of General Internal Medicine

Division of General Internal Medicine Newsletter

  • GIM News
  • Donna L. Bishop, Editor
  • Next issue:
    December 2016
  • Submission deadline:
    November 18th, 2016
  • E-mail: Donna Bishop

Professional Recognition

Honors and Awards

Michael Fine, MD, MSc, was selected for the 2016 Distinguished Research Mentor Award from the University of Pittsburgh Institute for Clinical Research Education.

Robert Arnold, MD, was selected as one of this year's Pittsburgh Business Times’ Health Care Heroes award winners. The individuals and organizations selected for this honor include those who have made significant contributions to improving health care in our region.

Jill Allenbaugh, MD, Jennifer Corbelli, MD, MS, Laurie Rack, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, Rachel Palkoska, BSN, RN, and Carla Spagnoletti MD, MS, recently won 1st place for the afternoon poster session at the UPSOM Academy of Master Educators First Annual Med Ed Day held on Sept 30, 2016 with a poster entitled “’What did they say?’ Teaching health literacy and communication skills to medical service nurses to improve the patient experience.”

Adam Gordon, MD, MPH, received the University of Pittsburgh Allen Humphrey Excellence in Mentoring Award in October. This award is presented to a Dean’s Summer Research Program (DSRP) mentor who demonstrates exemplary care and commitment in all aspects of DSRP student mentoring.

Laura Tycon, CRNP, was selected as the recipient of a 2016 Hospice and Palliative Nursing Foundation’s Clinical Practice Forum Conference Scholarship award.

Larissa Myaskovsky, PhD, was selected as a National Research Mentoring Network (NRMN) fellow for Professional Mentoring Skills Enhancing Diversity (PROMISED), a leadership training program offered by the Institute for Clinical Research Education (ICRE), for mentors committed to mentoring those from diverse backgrounds.

Julie Childers, MD, has earned her designation as Fellow of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (AAHPM).

Paula Leslie, PhD, will be presented with the American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation’s Louis M. DiCarlo Award, which recognizes an individual who has made significant clinical achievement within the last six years in audiology and/or speech-language pathology.

Lauren Petty, MEd, was awarded the Marlene Cooper Scholarship for professional development from the UPMC Graduate Medical Education Office. As part of the award, she will receive funding to attend the 2017 Association of Program Directors of Internal Medicine (APDIM) Spring Conference.

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Boards and Committee Service

Kaleab Abebe, PhD, has been appointed to the advisory panel on clinical trials for the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). The panel advises PCORI on issues pertaining to research design, implementation, and technical issues of clinical trials for patient-centered outcomes research. PCORI helps people make informed health care decisions and improves health care delivery and outcomes by producing and promoting high-integrity, evidence-based information that comes from research guided by patients, caregivers, and the broader health care community. Dr. Abebe has also been named Co-Chair of the scientific program committee for the 2017 Society for Clinical Trials Annual Conference in Liverpool, England. 

Jane Schell, MD, is on the education committee for the National Kidney Foundation, and will participate in a one-day pre-course focusing on palliative care—the first of its kind—in spring 2017.

Drs. Robert Arnold, Yael Schenker, and Douglas White were appointed as members of the Carnegie Mellon University Center for Ethics and Policy.

Walid Gellad, MD, MPH, will serve on the VIReC Pharmacy Information Technical Advisory Group (RxTAG) that is updating the Pharmacy Data Research User Guide for the VA research community.

Adam Gordon, MD, MPH, was elected as a member of the management board of the International Society of Addiction Journal Editors (ISAJE).

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Invited Speaker and Guest Lecture

Walid Gellad, MD, MPH, was invited to present to the national VA Primary Care Field Advisory Committee regarding his editorial in the Journal of General Internal Medicine about the Veterans Choice Act. Research led by Dr. Gellad on the safety of opioid use among Veterans receiving care in multiple health systems was featured on the national VA HSR&D website in August 2016.

Dr. Gellad was also invited to a meeting with HHS Assistant Secretary Ellen Murray in August to discuss efforts ongoing at the University of Pittsburgh to address the opioid epidemic.

Larissa Myaskovsky, PhD, senior authored a recent paper that was briefed by HSR&D to VHA leadership and was featured on the VA ORD website ["Has the Department of Veterans Affairs Found a Way to Avoid Racial Disparities in the Evaluation Process for Kidney Transplantation?" Transplantation. August 1, 2016].

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Jane Schell, MD, and the UPMC MusiCare program were highlighted on KDKA news on December 2, 2016.

Research published by Walid Gellad, MD, MPH, C. Bernie Good, MD, MPH, and CHERP colleagues, which documented higher rates of unsafe prescribing among Veterans with dementia who use both VA and Medicare health care systems, caught the attention of major national news outlets, including Reuters, Medscape, and Fox News, as well as VA leadership. An accompanying editorial noted that this work "could serve as the basis for an entire medical school course on health policy" and noted its "far reaching implications for health care system design, medication prescribing, and daily clinical practice."

A paper recently published by Walid Gellad, MD, MPH, and CHERP colleagues in Substance Abuse, describing a safety risk for Veterans dually enrolled in VA and Medicare who are receiving prescriptions for buprenorphine and overlapping prescriptions for opioids and/or benzodiazepines, was briefed to national VA leadership.

Reed Van Deusen, MD, was interviewed by WESA, Pittsburgh's NPR News Station, about the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine's Standardized Patient Program.

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