clinicians welcoming arrival of COVID vaccines


VP Jakub Tolar

The health problems our world faces, which in many cases were exacerbated by the pandemic, are only going to become more complex. This is why we continue to evolve the Office of Academic Clinical Affairs' role to create a space where interdisciplinary collaboration and education is the norm, not the exception.

In the year to come, we will continue to drive research on these ongoing challenges:

  • Filling the need for more rural health care providers
  • Discovering strategies to treat and prevent addiction
  • Developing interventions to ensure children get a better start for brain development and long-term mental health
  • Addressing the gaps in health equity and disparities in global health
  • Designing more effective interprofessional education
  • Connecting with our communities

We will also identify new and unexpected ones, for example:

  • Preventing burnout in health care providers for whom the last (almost) year has presented immeasurable challenges
  • Preparing for future pandemics and other emerging threats to community health

And we will continue to cope with the complications of COVID-19 in our personal and professional lives.

The crisis of COVID-19 has showcased the incredible power of interprofessional collaboration to solve complex problems. The work that emerged from funded initiatives like the CO:VID grants and BOLD Ideas exemplifies what happens when experts from across disciplines focus on a single problem from many different perspectives.

Lastly, as health professionals, we also find ourselves setting an example as we continue our essential work in the face of great challenges. Our actions around the orderly and equitable roll out of the COVID-19 vaccine are closely watched by our community. We must ensure that we follow the guidelines, wait our turn, and maintain the highest standard behavior in this situation.

Thank you,

Jakub Tolar, MD, PhD
Vice President for Clinical Affairs

COVID-19 vaccine

The Ethics of Vaccine Distribution

Debra DeBruin, PhD, interim director for the Center for Bioethics, has been a member of a number of working groups relevant to public health in Minnesota, co-directed the Minnesota Pandemic Ethics Project, led the project to develop ethics guidance for Crisis Standards of Care in Minnesota, and now co-leads the Minnesota COVID Ethics Collaborative, which develops ethics guidance for COVID-19 response in the state of Minnesota. Read Dr. DeBruin’s Q&A on the ethics of vaccine distribution, where she explores how a framework for prioritized vaccine allocation is decided and what Minnesotans should know about COVID-19 vaccine guidelines.

Blue star

Recognizing Outstanding Faculty

Congratulations to the 2020 inductees to the Academies for Excellence which recognize outstanding faculty in the areas of scientific research, educational scholarship, clinical practice, and team science!

Academy for Excellence in Clinical Practice

  • William Roberts, MD, MS, professor, Dept. of Family Medicine and Community Health; dir. of faculty affairs, Dept. of Family Medicine and Community Health; dir. of Program in Sports Medicine, Dept. of Family Medicine and Community Health
  • Mark Schneiderhan, PharmD, BCPP, associate professor, Dept. of Pharmacy Practice and Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Sara Shumway, MD, professor, Div. of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Dept. of Surgery; vice chief, Div. of Cardiothoracic Surgery

Academy for Excellence in Health Research

  • Alfonso Araque, PhD, professor, Dept. of Neuroscience
  • Kristine Ensrud, MD, MPH, professor, Dept. of Medicine
  • Bernhard Hering, MD, executive director, Schulze Diabetes Inst.; professor, Dept. of Surgery
  • Joseph Metzger, PhD, professor, dept. head and chair, Dept. of Integrative Biology and Physiology
  • Wei Pan, PhD, professor, Div. of Biostatistics

Academy for Excellence in the Scholarship of Teaching & Learning

  • Barbara Brandt, PhD, EdM, FNAP, dir., Nat. Center for Interprofessional Practice and Education; professor, Dept. of Pharmaceutical Care & Health Systems
  • Jeffrey Chipman, MD, professor and chief, Div. of Critical Care/Acute Care Surgery, Dept. of Surgery, Frank B. Cerra Professor in Critical Care Surgery; vice chair for education, Dept. of Surgery
  • Brian Sick, MD, associate professor of Medicine, Div. of General Internal Medicine; division dir., Div. of General Internal Medicine; dir. of interprofessional education, Office of Associate Vice President for Academic Health Sciences
  • Ann Van Heest, MD, professor, Dept. of Orthopedic Surgery; residency program dir., Dept. of Orthopedic Surgery; vice chair of education, Dept. of Orthopedic Surgery; Orthopedic Advisory Board, Dept. of Orthopedic Surgery

Academy for Excellence in Team Science

  • Melena Bellin, MD, associate professor, Dept. of Pediatrics
  • Srinath Chinnakotla, MD, professor, Dept. of Surgery; surgical dir., liver transplantation, Dept. of Surgery; executive medical dir., Pediatric Abdominal Transplantation, Dept. of Surgery
  • Bernhard Hering MD, executive director, Schulze Diabetes Inst.; professor, Dept. of Surgery
  • Sarah Jane Schwarzenberg, MD, professor, Dept. of Pediatrics; div. director, Division of Pediatric Gastroenterology Hepatology and Nutrition; vice chair for clinical affairs, Dept. of Pediatrics; co-director, Cystic Fibrosis Center

CRTI 2021

CRTI 2021: Data Palooza - Data Resources for Population-Based Cancer Research

Join Masonic Cancer Center on Jan. 14 for “CRTI 2021: Data Palooza - Data Resources for Population-Based Cancer Research.” The following data resources will be covered: Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER), Marketscan, National Cancer Database (NCDB), ACS National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (ACS NSQIP), Fairview Cancer Registry, and Population Assessment for Tobacco and Health (PATH).

Rare disease day

Save the Date: Rare Disease Day

Save the date for a virtual Rare Disease Day at the University of Minnesota. “Telehealth in Rare Disease Clinical Practice and Research: The Silver Lining Now and Beyond COVID-19” takes place on Feb. 26.




Research involving COVID-19 at the University of Minnesota

Join CTSI on Jan. 14 for "Research involving COVID-19 at the University of Minnesota." Learning objectives include identifying lessons learned at the University from research during a pandemic and understanding the University's research portfolio for COVID-19 research. This seminar is part of the bi-weekly Clinical Research Professional Development Series.

MLK tribute concert

40th annual U of M Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute Concert

The University of Minnesota will present the 40th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute Concert on Sunday, Jan. 17 at 3 pm. The program, hosted and curated by U of M School of Music alumnus G. Phillip Shoultz, III of VocalEssence, celebrates 40 years of being in community and imagines an excellent way forward. Don’t miss this special virtual tribute intermixing the words of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and John Lewis with musical performances from U of M students and the Twin Cities community.

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