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VPMA Voice

Last weekend, auspiciously timed with the UI Homecoming weekend and the Hawkeyes’ 30 to 28 victory over Michigan, the new UI Sports Medicine Center opened its doors for the first time, offering Iowans convenient access to the very best sports medicine services available for athletes of all ages and levels, from casual exercisers to intense college athletes.

Located at the new Institute for Orthopaedics, Sports Medicine, and Rehabilitation facility on Prairie Meadow Drive in Iowa City, the Center’s convenient location and free parking will help make our sports medicine services more accessible than ever to our patients. This is also one of the first energy-efficient, environmentally friendly “green” buildings on campus.

The new $4.9 million facility houses state-of-the-art tools that our sports medicine physicians, physician assistants, nurses, and physical therapists will need to diagnose and treat a range of injuries. We’ve created a team of experts providing a full spectrum of care, from the casual strain of the weekend warrior to the treatment and rehabilitation of potentially game-ending injuries.

Despite last week’s disappointing budget news, we remain committed to our mission of excellence in patient care, education, and research. UI Health Care takes great pride in delivering world class medicine for Iowa and the world. I am pleased that this wonderful new facility gives us another means by which we can share our remarkable talents and provide a strong pathway for growth even in a challenging economy.

Signed, Jean Robillard

Accrediting team to visit October 18–21

A survey team from the Liaison Committee for Medical Education (LCME)—the national accrediting body for medical education programs—will conduct a site visit of the UI Carver College of Medicine October 18–21.

Reaccreditation of the College’s medical education program is essential. It is a reaffirmation of one of our primary missions: to train physicians, scientists, pharmacologists, physician assistants, physical therapists, specialty technicians, and the teachers who will continue to train and inspire new generations of health care professionals.

For the past year and a half, dozens of faculty, staff, and students have collectively devoted thousands of hours to the Carver College of Medicine self-study—a core element in a reaccreditation process. The self-study is available on The Point.

It has been eight years since the LCME visited the UI Carver College of Medicine, and College leaders look forward to sharing with the survey team the high quality, innovative educational programming available to students, as well as the many outstanding achievements of faculty and students.

American Heart Association honors Sigmund

Curt D. Sigmund, PhD, Roy J. Carver Chair in Hypertension Research and director of the Center on Functional Genomics of Hypertension in the UI Cardiovascular Research Center, has received the 2009 Novartis Award for Hypertension Research. The American Heart Association’s Council for High Blood Pressure Research sponsors the award.

The award is the highest honor in hypertension research given annually by the association and Novartis. It recognizes outstanding researchers whose investigations have improved treatment and increased understanding of high blood pressure.

Sigmund received the award for his pioneering research using genetically manipulated mice to understand the role of the renin-angiotensin system in hypertension and the involvement of the protein PPAR gamma, a target of anti-diabetes medications, in blood vessel function.

NIH grant for reproductive health research

Obstetrics and Gynecology has been awarded a five-year, $2.2 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to support junior faculty researchers in women’s reproductive health.

The grant, effective September 30, establishes the Iowa Women’s Reproductive Health Research Career Development Center, one of 16 such programs nationwide. Funding is provided by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and the Office of Research on Women’s Health, both part of the NIH.

Kimberly Leslie, MD, head of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, is principal investigator for the grant; and Mario Ascoli, PhD, professor of pharmacology and an expert in reproductive biology, directs the center.

Looking ahead

Global Hand Washing Day

Join members of the Hand Hygiene Task Force as they mark “Global Hand Washing Day” sponsored by the World Health Organization in the Fountain Entrance Lobby from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday, October 15. Learn more about hand hygiene and its critical role in infection control from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Speak with hand hygiene experts and see how clean your hands really are (or are not!).

Talk with members of the MICU and NICU teams about their exemplary work. Sign up for a prize drawing! Free giveaways while they last. Learn more at http://www.globalhandwashingday.org/ and visit the Hand Hygiene site on The Point.

Ponseti Races

On Friday, October 16, The University of Iowa and the international community celebrate the successes of clubfoot research and treatment all over the world with the Ponseti Races, which kick off the weekend-long International Clubfoot Symposium in Iowa City.

A 5K race for adults will start at 4:30 p.m. at the UI Recreation Building and end up joining the Children’s Race at 5:30 p.m. at the Recreation Building. The event is complete with food, drinks, entertainment, and great prizes. Funds raised at the races will be used to care for babies otherwise unable to afford clubfoot treatment.

Ignacio Ponseti, MD, UI Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, pioneered a non-surgical method in treating infant clubfoot, the most common genetic birth deformity. Since the method’s inception nearly 50 years ago, more than 100,000 children have been treated and able to lead perfectly normal lives.

At 95, Dr. Ponseti still treats patients and trains medical professionals. During the annual Ponseti International Symposium, health professionals come to learn and share strategies in spreading clubfoot treatment to children everywhere.

Special guests at the races will include Hawkeye athletes, coaches, and surprise celebrities. Register online as an individual, team, or to volunteer at http://www.ponseti.info/races/.


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