Ring in the New!

Dean Pamela B. Davis

We enter the new year with much optimism and high expectations, looking forward to fresh opportunities and new relationships. The list of those who wish to collaborate with us grows apace …

Congratulations to Mark Chance, PhD, and his colleagues for turning an idea about collaboration into vigorous partnerships with Tohuku University in Japan and Taiwan Medical University in Taipei. As a result, CWRU is a leading power in the internationalization of biomedical research, education, and training. The partnerships are bearing fruit in many ways: mutually beneficial scientific exchanges, dynamic joint projects, and symposia conducted in both Asia and Cleveland. Synergies have been uncovered that we could not predict. Investments have been made. These relationships look to have staying power.

Our pioneering inter-professional pilot program with the CWRU physician assistant, dentistry, nursing, and social work programs, three clinical practices, and the Macy Foundation will change how health care teaching takes place in the clinical setting. The goals are to expand student knowledge, skills, and frames of mind about the benefits of collaborative care and prepare faculty members to promote learning experiences that strengthen interprofessional teamwork. This project is leading to partnerships with federally qualified health centers and Cleveland Clinic in the ICU, emergency room, and pediatric clinics, where health care is already delivered via teams. We believe that group-based care will save time, money, and most importantly, lives. Therefore it is imperative to train our students to work effectively in this model.

We are playing a central role in a crucial partnership with the City of Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, and the State of Ohio to reduce infant mortality in our inner city, where children die before their first birthday at a rate nearly three times the national average. First Year Cleveland, led by Mike Konstan, is tackling this task with a profound sense of urgency. The project must and will succeed. By aligning all necessary forces to take on the problem, we have the best shot at healthier babies.

These examples, and others, demonstrate that the School of Medicine is a magnet for those who wish to partner with the best. Our capacity to achieve our cardinal goals – excel in education, advance discoveries from bench to bedside, and improve the health of our community – is immeasurably strengthened by working together with like-minded colleagues, around the corner or around the globe.

Congratulations and thanks to our faculty members who have forged these partnerships and work with dedication to implement them. May the new year bring us even more opportunities and successes.

Happy New Year!