Pursuing Value in a Time of Healthcare Transformation: Delivering Quality Care to Diverse Populations

The Office of Diversity and Inclusion offers a quarterly Diversity Seminar Series that brings national experts to speak about different aspects of diversity.

The next Diversity Seminar will be on Friday, April 25, 2014 and feature Joseph R. Betancourt, MD, MPH, Director, The Disparities Solutions Center Senior Scientist, Mongan Institute for Health Policy, Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Program Director of Multicultural Education, Massachusetts General Hospital, Co-Founder, Quality Interactions, Inc.

Joseph R. Betancourt, MD, MPH
April 25, 2014
Noon - 1 pm
DuVal Auditorium, UAMC


Pursuing Value in a Time of Healthcare Transformation: Delivering Quality Care to Diverse Populations


Dr. Betancourt directs the Disparities Solutions Center, which works with healthcare organizations to improve quality of care, address racial and ethnic disparities, and achieve equity. He is Director of Multicultural Education for Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), and an expert in...

[read more]

Rock Band ‘Foster the People to Sing and Visit Patients at Diamond Children’s

The indie pop band Foster the People will sing some of their songs to hospitalized children and staff today at the University of Arizona Medical Center – Diamond Children’s at 3:30 p.m., Wed., April 16.

The group is composed of Mark Foster (vocals, keyboards, piano, synthesizers, guitar, programming, percussion), Cubbie Fink (bass and backing vocals) and Mark Pontius (drums, percussion). The group's music, described as melodic dance-infused pop and rock, spanning many genres.

Free Healthy Eye Screenings

WHAT:  Free Healthy Eye Screenings

At these University of Arizona Medical Center and UA Department of Ophthalmology sponsored healthy eye screenings, we check for cataracts, glaucoma, diabetes, macular degeneration and dry eye. Screenings are recommended for individuals over age 18, those with a family history of eye disease, a diagnosis of diabetes and/or high blood pressure, and for those taking certain medications. Click here to view and post the flier.


Free eye screenings also will be held Saturday, May 17 and June 21 – same time.

PLACE: St. Elizabeth’s Health Center
140 W. Speedway Blvd., Tucson
(next to Pima Community College west of Stone & Speedway)
Are you worried about your vision? Do you have a family history of glaucoma? Are you age 50 or older and concerned about the health of your eyes?

The University of Arizona Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Science, in conjunction with the University of...

[read more]

Pulmonary Researcher Dr. Louise Hecker Joins UA College of Medicine – Tucson

Pulmonary researcher Louise Hecker, PhD, has joined the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson as assistant professor of medicine in the Department of Medicine, Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine.

Dr. Hecker, who joins the UA from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), is first-author of a study, “Reversal of Persistent Fibrosis in Aging by Targeting Nox4-Nrf2 Redox Imbalance,” published April 9 online in Science Translational Medicine.

“Dr. Hecker will be a key contributor in UA efforts to fully develop novel programs in respiratory medicine, lung biology and drug discovery,” said Joe G.N. Garcia, MD, UA senior vice president for health sciences. “With her arrival, this truly is an exciting time for pulmonary fibrosis research at the UA.”

“We are very fortunate to have recruited one of the top young scientists in the field of lung fibrosis to the UA. Dr. Hecker provides unique perspectives on lung scarring, cellular deterioration with age and tissue regeneration,” said Kenneth S. Knox, MD, chief of the...

[read more]

TOPCAT Trial Tests Possible Treatment for Patients with Heart Failure and Preserved Heart Pump Function

Can Spironolactone, a drug with multiple actions on the heart and blood vessels, improve outcomes in a hard-to-treat group of heart failure patients? This was a question addressed by the “Treatment of Preserved Cardiac Function Heart Failure with an Aldosterone Antagonist (TOPCAT)” trial.

Currently, treatment is very challenging for heart failure patients who have normal or near-normal ejection fraction, a number that describes the percentage of blood pumped out of the left ventricle (the heart’s main pumping chamber) with each heart beat. Generally, above 50 percent  is thought to be a normal ejection fraction, said Nancy K. Sweitzer, MD, PhD, director of the University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center and chief of the Division of Cardiology at the UA College of Medicine – Tucson, who serves on the TOPCAT executive committee.

Although many effective treatments are available for heart failure patients with a low ejection fraction, no therapy ever has been shown to significantly affect outcomes in heart failure with preserved ejection fraction, which accounts for about 50 percent of heart failure in the United States and is very prevalent among the...

[read more]

Kids of Steele Team Up Event with UA Coach Rodriguez

Kids of Steele will  host a special “Team Up” event with UA football Coach Rich Rodriguez on Thursday, April 10.

The event is for children 5-years through 8th grade, who will have the opportunity to participate in practice drills and other football activities with Coach Rodriguez and his staff.

The event is from 5– 6 p.m., and families are invited to stay and watch a family-friendly movie on the jumbotron at 6:30 p.m. at Arizona Football Stadium (northeast corner, Gate 2)

“Children will be able to practice like real UA  football players, while supporting cutting-edge research that improves the lives of children right here in our community,” said Cecie Davenport, Kids of Steele board member.

Kids of Steele is the family auxiliary of the UA Steele Children’s Research Center and is dedicated to teaching children the importance of community service through service projects and family-friendly fundraising events that benefit the UA Steele Center. The group has  raised more than $100,000 in approximately three years. To learn more, please visit...

[read more]

AHSC VETS Center Grand Opening April 10

EVENT:   AHSC VETS Center Grand Opening


LOCATION:  Arizona Health Sciences Center Library, 1501 N. Campbell Ave.

COST:  Free and open to the public.

The Veterans Education and Transition Services (VETS) Center on the Arizona Health Sciences Center (AHSC) campus will host a grand opening at its new location in the Arizona Health Sciences Library, 1501 N. Campbell Ave., Tucson, on Thursday, April 10, 4 to 5 p.m.

Gov. Janet Brewer’s office will be represented by Britann O’Brien and U.S. Sen. John McCain’s office will be represented by Rick Stilgenbauer. U.S. Rep. Raul Grijalva, Patty Valera from U.S. Rep. Ron Barber’s office, Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild and Ted Vogt, former congressman and director of the Arizona Department of Veteran Services, will join former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords and her husband,...

[read more]

Heart Attack Patient Defies Odds with Tailored Surgical Treatment at UA Medical Center

When cardiothoracic surgeon Sreekumar Subramanian, MD, first saw Charles Barnes last November, he knew the odds were stacked against the patient. After suffering a massive heart attack, Barnes’ kidneys were shutting down and his heart and lungs were failing. Based on his medical condition, Barnes, who was in a coma, was given a 25 percent chance of survival.

The heart team at The University of Arizona Medical Center and the UA Sarver Heart Center sprang into action and performed “hybrid” surgical procedures tailored to his condition to save his life. Hybrid cardiac surgery combines conventional surgery and catheter-based intervention, with cardiac surgeons and cardiologists working side-by-side to achieve the optimal result for the patient.

The procedure was risky because Barnes, who had several heart attacks starting in 2006 and had previous cardiac bypass surgery, was critically ill with severe lung and kidney dysfunction, and re-operating on a patient who has had previous heart surgery is challenging.

The tailored...

[read more]

Rita Ellsworth Appointed Director of BioCommunications at Arizona Health Sciences Center

Rita Ellsworth, MS, who has more than 28 years of experience in web development, graphic services, “new-media” development and other communication services, has been appointed director of the Division of BioCommunications at the Arizona Health Sciences Center (AHSC).

Ellsworth, who reports to the Office of the Senior Vice President for Health Sciences, replaces John Hall, PhD, who recently retired after a 36-year career at AHSC BioCommunications – the last four years as director. 

Since 2003, Ellsworth previously served as coordinator of web development and graphic services for AHSC BioCommunications, supervising graphic designers, illustrators, programmers and web designers.

In her new role, she manages a creative team that provides a comprehensive range of media planning, creation, production and support services to assist in the instructional, research, patient care and public service missions of the University of Arizona’s Tucson-based health professions colleges:  the UA College of Medicine – Tucson; the UA College of Nursing; the UA College of Pharmacy; and the UA Mel and Enid Zuckerman College...

[read more]

Dr. Andrew Weil to Prepare, Sample Healthy Recipes at UAMC Café

Andrew Weil, MD, founder and director of the University of Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine, will prepare his Tuscan kale salad and sample his own recipes, prepared by hospital chefs, that are soon to be included on the inpatient room service menu at the University of Arizona Medical Center on Tuesday, April 8, 2014, 10 to 11 a.m., in the UAMC - University Campus Café.

The recipes are drawn from Dr. Weil’s 2012 cookbook “True Food: Seasonal, Sustainable, Simple, Pure,” which he co-wrote with business partner and restaurateur Sam Fox and executive chef Michael Stebner. Fox, Stebner and Dr. Weil have opened two True Food Kitchens in Phoenix and are scouting out another restaurant site in Tucson.

“A hospital may think they can’t serve gourmet health food such as this, but they can,” said Julie Kennedy Oehlert, RN, UAMC vice president of Patient Experience. “Hospitals shy away from it because they think it’s too...

[read more]