By Lisa Brown

Albany Street Safety Tips

October 21st, 2014 in Uncategorized

As a result of the ongoing BMC construction project  there are significant changes to vehicular and pedestrian traffic patterns on Albany Street and Massachusetts Avenue. Please follow the appropriate walking paths http://www.bumc.bu.edu/2014/10/02/bmc-construction-update/.  If you have questions or concerns, please contact construction@bmc.org or call 638-4144.

Please Note:

  • The sidewalk on the north side of Albany Street is closed from the Shapiro driveway to the Dowling building, and the crosswalk from Menino Pavilion to the Power Plant has been removed. This means pedestrians need to walk on the Power Plant side of Albany Street. Please do not walk in the street.
  • There is no pedestrian access from Menino Pavilion/Dowling to Albany Street. Please enter and exit these buildings through the main hospital entrance on Harrison Avenue.

Tips for Getting Around Campus

  • Utilize designated walking paths;
  • Give yourself extra time when driving into work;
  • Allow extra time when crossing the campus;
  • Pay extra attention to pedestrian crossings as some have changed.

NIH Funding Information

October 15th, 2014 in Uncategorized

NIH Appropriations for FY 2015 [Under the Current Continuing Resolution (CR)]:NIH_Logo

Following previous practice under continuing resolutions (CR), the NIH on Oct. 1 announced it will issue non-competing research grants “at a level below that indicated on the most recent Notice of Award (generally up to 90 percent of the previously committed level).” The notice states that upward adjustments will be considered once a FY 2015 appropriations bill is enacted. The current CR funds the NIH at 99.9 percent of the FY 2014 enacted level through Dec. 11.

Find the guidance at: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-15-001.html

Saitz Named Senior Editor of Journal of Addiction Medicine

October 15th, 2014 in Uncategorized

Richard Saitz

Richard Saitz

Dr. Richard Saitz, chairman of BUSPH’s Community Health Sciences Department, has been named the senior editor of the Journal of Addiction Medicine, the official journal of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM).

Saitz, a general internist and primary care physician who is also a professor of medicine at the BU School of Medicine, will assume the leadership position Jan.1, when the current senior editor, researcher Dr. George Koob, steps down. Koob has been appointed the director of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism at the National Institutes of Health. Saitz will join current journal co-editors Drs. Shannon Miller, Martha Wunsch and Frank Vocci.

“As a general medicine internist with leadership and expertise in addiction medicine, Dr. Saitz will tactically position ASAM’s journal amidst the Affordable Care Act, the patient-centered medical home, addiction parity, and the new national recognition of the importance of placing addiction medicine central to primary care,” said Dr. Lori D. Karan, treasurer and publications council chair for ASAM, who led the recruitment.

Saitz is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians and of the American Society of Addiction Medicine, and is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and by the American Board Addiction Medicine. He has received numerous awards for his research contributions to the field of addiction medicine, including an RSA Distinguished Researcher Award from the Research Society on Alcoholism.

His studies, supported by federal agencies and foundations, have focused on integrating care for addictions into general health settings, including identification and brief interventions in primary care.

“Journal of Addiction Medicine is well on its way as a prominent journal in the field, and Dr. Richard Saitz can continue and facilitate this trajectory,” Koob said.

ASAM President Dr. Stuart Gitlow said Saitz has “the strong medical and research background to continue the incredible growth of ASAM’s journal that we experienced with Dr. Koob’s leadership. “

Saitz, the author of over 160 peer-reviewed publications, previously served as a board member of the International Society of Addiction Journal Editors; as editor-in-chief of Alcohol, Other Drugs and Health: Current Evidence, Evidence-Based Medicine and Addiction Science & Clinical Practice; and as an editorial board member on numerous addiction and other medical journals. He also served as a leading editor of The ASAM Principles of Addiction Medicine.

 

 

Oct. 16 Pike Lecture

October 9th, 2014 in Uncategorized

Abuse of Mentally Ill Patients at Bridgewater State Hospital: How the Media Can Help Medicine and the Law Protect Patients

Michael Rezendes of the Boston Globe will review a year of investigative reporting on the state’s prison for the mentally ill and explain how his reporting led to revelations of major abuses and significant reforms.

Michael Rezendes is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter who has played a key role in many of the Globe’s most significant investigations, including those probing the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, financial corruption in the nation’s charitable foundations, and the plight of mentally ill state prisoners. As a member of the Globe’s Spotlight Team he shared a 2003 Pulitzer Prize for investigating the cover-up of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church. More recently, Rezendes has uncovered the widespread abuse of mental health patients at Bridgewater State Hospital, including the soaring use of isolation and restraints, and the death of a 23-year-old mental health patient who was killed while prison guards were placing him in four-point restraints.

To learn more on Rezendes’s reporting about Bridgewater State Hospital, please see  A death in restraints after ‘standard procedure’ and Scathing study cites Bridgewater practices.

The annual Pike Lecture on Health Law is held in honor of Boston University School of Law alumni Neal Pike (‘37), a distinguished lawyer and lifelong advocate for individuals with disabilities.

Abuse of Mentally Ill Patients at Bridgewater State Hospital: How the Media Can Help Medicine and the Law Protect Patients

  • Thursday, Oct. 16
  • Noon-1 p.m.
  • BUSM Instructional Building, L-112
  • Open to students, faculty, staff, general public

Co-Sponsored by BU School of Law and Department of Health Law, Bioethics & Human Rights at BU School of Public Health.  For more information, contact Gina Duong.

Inaugural Physician Assistant Class Celebrates PA Week Oct. 6-12

October 9th, 2014 in Uncategorized

Stethoscope (Courtesy Flickr user Dr. Farouk)The inaugural class of BUSM’s Physician Assistant (PA) Program celebrated National Physician Assistant Week, Oct. 6-12. First-year PA students organized events to share information about and appreciation of PAs.

The week’s activities included the distribution of appreciation buttons, complementary treats and bookmarks with facts about the PA profession. In addition, the BU PA Program hosted a luncheon Oct. 9 with BMC PAs, first-year PA students and BU undergraduate members of the Pre-PA Club.

Physician Assistants are crucial members of today’s healthcare team. PAs are versatile and skilled clinicians that provide effective, quality care to their patients. The inaugural class of the BUSM PA Program is proud to represent an incredible profession at an institution famous for its medical achievements.

To learn more about the program, please contact PA Program Director Mary Warner, PA-C, 617-638-5744, paoffice@bu.edu

Submitted by Douglas-Jarrett Cole Turno , a first year physician assistant student at BUSM

BUSM/VA Research Team to Study Effectiveness of LED Helmets for Treating TBI and PTSD in Returning Vets

October 8th, 2014 in Uncategorized

Yelena Bogdanova, PhD, an assistant professor of psychiatry at BUSM and a psychology researcher at the VA Boston Healthcare System, was recently awarded a 2-year, $200,000 grant from VA Rehabilitation Research & Development for her project titled “Noninvasive LED Treatment to Improve Cognition and Promote Recovery in Blast TBI.”

Rehabilitation of blast traumatic brain injury (TBI) and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) among Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans is a very important topic and a new area of research,” explained Bogdanova, principal investigator of the study. The clinical trial will utilize cutting-edge technology (LED helmets) to treat cognitive and neuropsychiatric symptoms in returning veterans with TBI and PTSD.

Boston University Receives ‘BEST’ Grant By NIH To Promote BioMedical Careers Beyond Academic Research

October 2nd, 2014 in Uncategorized

Boston University (BU) is one of seven institutions to receive the prestigious Broadening Experience in Scientific Training (BEST) award by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The five-year, $1.8 million award will provide biomedical research trainees from across the University with enhanced training to help PhD students and postdoctoral trainees prepare for careers beyond conventional academic research.

“NIH recognizes that there are many ways in which biomedical PhD graduates can meaningfully contribute to the biomedical research enterprise,” said NIH Director Francis S. Collins, MD, PhD. “The future of biomedical research depends upon a sustainable and robust workforce, in which talented, well-trained scientists are best prepared to make significant contributions in academia, industry, government, business, and other venues.”

Approximately $3.7 million was set aside by the NIH’s Common Fund to invest in these programs to enhance training opportunities for graduate and postdoctoral trainees and prepare them for a host of scientific careers.

BU’s BEST program will involve trainees throughout the university’s schools and colleges engaged in biomedical research, including the School of Medicine (BUSM), the School of Public Health and the Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine. BUSM’s Division of Graduate Medical Sciences (GMS) is home to more than 850 students and approximately 400 post-doctoral trainees that will benefit from the BEST program.

“In order to maintain the nation’s scientific competitiveness, it is critical to attract, prepare and engage a well-trained workforce. Our goal is to re-engineer the training pipeline,” explained Linda Hyman, PhD, associate provost for the Division of GMS at BUSM and one of the principal investigators of BU’s BEST program. “Using analysis of the job market as the driver of professional development programming, BU’s BEST will enable trainees to fulfill the needs, not only of the current market, but also the future biomedical workforce,” she added.

According to Barbara Schreiber, PhD, director of Graduate Studies in the department of biochemistry at BUSM and BEST co-investigator, BU’s BEST will utilize innovative tools and resources to analyze workforce data with input from key stakeholders to guide and evolve curriculum design. “State-of-the-art software will identify biomedical workforce jobs, job trends and skills required for various career pathways. With strong advising/mentoring, trainees will be exposed to a curriculum of foundational/professional skills and career options via coursework, workshops, career panels as well as hybrid online modules.”

Graduate students and postdoctoral researchers will be able to enhance their interests through a wealth of options via existing and planned coursework, and participation in shadowing experiences with a network of faculty, administrators, alumni and industry partners. Finally, trainees will have opportunities to further develop their interests by participation in internships, teaching and/or formal academic training (certificate or MA/MS degrees). “BU’s BEST program looks forward to developing a novel paradigm for expanded and targeted training in the biomedical sciences which will ultimately be fully transferable to other institutions,” added William Cruikshank, PhD, director of the Molecular and Translational Medicine Graduate Program at BUSM and a BEST co-investigator.

BMC Construction Update

October 2nd, 2014 in Uncategorized

The Medical Campus will start to see a lot of changes beginning this month as BMC’s clinical campus redesign project picks up speed. Continued soil excavation may be malodorous; however proactive measures are being implemented to minimize the smell. It is not harmful. There will be additional changes to pedestrian and vehicular traffic patterns. Please utilize designated walking paths, allow extra time when crossing from one side of campus to the other, and give yourself ample time when driving into work.

Albany Street Construction Map Oct_2014

The following will begin in early October:

Menino Pavilion

To accommodate construction activities the following changes, approved by the City of Boston, will be made to Albany Street:

  • Relocation of the bus stop from 774 Albany St. (front of Boston Public Health) to 710 Albany St. (in front of the parking garage and the TranSComm office).
  • Traffic lanes along Albany Street will change to accommodate construction activities. Traffic will be maintained in both directions on Albany Street. Parking meters located in front of the Talbot building (in front the FedEx office) and in front of the Power Plant will be removed. A new eastbound dedicated left-turn lane to the Shapiro driveway will be created. The current Albany Street east-bound dedicated right-turn lane to the 610 and 710 garages (lane coming from Mass Ave.) will be modified to become a shared through/right turn lane. The current Albany Street west-bound dedicated left-turn lane to 710 garage (lane coming from Frontage Road) will also become a shared through/left turn lane, with those turning left yielding to oncoming traffic.
  • Closure of the north side Albany Street sidewalk from Dowling building to Shapiro Center driveway. No pedestrians will be able to walk along this stretch of sidewalk; all pedestrians will need to walk along the south side of Albany Street (the Power Plant side). Walking access to the Shapiro Center along Albany St. from 85 East Concord will be maintained.
  • No entry or exit from Dowling building to Albany Street sidewalk; only emergency egress will be maintained during construction. Access to and egress from the Dowling building will be from the Yawkey Center ground floor connecting corridor.

Yawkey Center

A construction staging area will be built along the Mass Ave. side of the Yawkey Center to allow for construction personnel and materials to enter and exit the building. The parking meters along the Yawkey side of Mass Ave. have been removed to create the construction area and a dedicated lane for pedestrians has been created that is protected by jersey barriers. Five metered parking spaces on Mass Ave., near the Yawkey entrance, will be removed to create a dedicated drop-off location for patients in wheelchairs.

If you have questions or concerns, please contact construction@bmc.org.

GSDM Volunteers Provide Oral Health Education and Care to Homeless Preschoolers

September 29th, 2014 in Uncategorized

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Margi Chan DMD 16 (left) and Ellen Yang demonstrate proper brushing techniques to preschoolers

Volunteers from the Boston University Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine (GSDM) Global & Population Health office made three visits to Health Horizons for Homeless Children preschool program in Dorchester in May and July 2014.

On May 20 and 21, Oral Health Promotion Director Kathy Lituri and Keenan Sandouk, Spring 2014 intern from Sargent College, visited five classrooms, where they provided age-appropriate oral health education, dental screenings, and fluoride varnish application to children in five classrooms.

On July 10, Margi Chan DMD 16 and Ellen Yang, a summer intern with the Academic Internship Council Boston University Summer Study Internship Program, joined Lituri to provide education, screening, and fluoride applications in two preschool classrooms.

Every child received a goody bag with oral health care items and a sticker. The teachers and administrative assistant also received goody bags.

On two of the days, the volunteers also hosted a display table with information on oral health for infants and toddlers, staffed during drop-off time to reach parents and guardians.

MED’s Corley Appointed NEIDL Director

September 23rd, 2014 in Uncategorized

Takes charge at critical moment in research into infectious diseases

One of Ronald Corley’s first tasks as NEIDL director will be to identify the top three areas to focus recruiting efforts on. Photo by Kalman Zabarsky

One of Ronald Corley’s first tasks as NEIDL director will be to identify the top three areas to focus recruiting efforts on. Photo by Kalman Zabarsky

Ronald Corley, whose five years as associate director of BU’s National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratories (NEIDL) saw the lab overcome several legal and political challenges, has been appointed NEIDL director, effective October 1. Corley will continue as a School of Medicine professor and chair of microbiology, but will no longer be Medical Campus associate provost for research.

Announcing Corley’s appointment in a message to the Boston University community, President Robert A. Brown describes the new director as “an outstanding scientist and a collaborative leader.”

Corley succeeds John R. Murphy, a MED professor of medicine and microbiology, who had been NEIDL interim director since 2011. Brown says he is grateful to Murphy, “who has been instrumental in bringing the laboratories through the arduous regulatory processes and the initial launch of operations.”

“Dr. Corley’s leadership and vision will allow the NEIDL to reach its potential of being one of the premier centers for research on emerging and deadly infectious diseases,” says Gloria S. Waters, vice president and associate provost for research. “His experience as the associate director over the past five years will ensure a smooth transition and has shown that he has the collaborative style necessary to run a center like this and strengthen this area of research excellence at BU.”

Corley takes the helm of NEIDL at a critical time, as the worst Ebola virus outbreak in history continues to sweep across Central Africa.

“With Ebola, you can’t diagnose somebody until they’re already symptomatic,” he says. “Think how beneficial it would be if you had a tool that could diagnose people earlier. That alone would be a game changer. It’s imperative for us to learn to understand these emerging viruses and also to develop the diagnostics, the therapeutics, and the vaccines. That’s what the NEIDL is about.”

Construction of the NEIDL, on the Medical Campus in Boston’s South End, was completed in 2008 at a cost of $200 million, with the majority of the funding—$141 million—provided by the National Institutes of Health. The 192,000-square-foot laboratory is part of a national network of secure facilities dedicated to the development of diagnostics, vaccines, and treatments to combat emerging and reemerging infectious diseases.

The NEIDL has faced opposition from community activists expressing concern over safety and security, worries heightened by recent breaches at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), where scientists were accidentally exposed to potentially viable anthrax bacteria.

“The recent events at the CDC have done nothing to dampen people’s concerns,” says Corley. “Those were horrible events—they were outrageous. The first thing we do when events like that happen is review all our processes and ask, could that have happened here? And if the answer is no, we make sure everyone understands why. And if we need to change something, we change it.”

Corley says he is committed to open communication with the public regarding the lab’s operations, safety protocols, and research goals.

“One of the things that former director Jack Murphy has been adamant about—and I have absolute, full intention to continue—is to be as open, direct, and transparent with the community as possible,” Corley says. “We want to address any questions that come our way and meet with anyone who wants to meet with us. We will continue our public outreach, because communication with the public is absolutely critical.”

The lab has been approved for some Biosafety Level 3 (BSL-3) research and is currently working to secure the necessary permits and approvals for BSL-4 research from the Boston Public Health Commission and the CDC. Corley’s goal is to begin BSL-4 research in the NEIDL in 2015. He also plans to begin a significant recruitment campaign across a number of different disciplines.

“We already have a small but outstanding group of scientists here,” he says.  “What we want to do is build critical mass in certain areas that will raise everybody’s game.”

One of his first tasks will be to identify the top three areas to focus recruiting efforts on. These areas are still under discussion, but zoonosis (the spread of infectious disease between species) and pathogenesis (the mechanism by which microbes cause disease) will certainly be top priorities at NEIDL, he says. Tuberculosis and other respiratory pathogens are also likely areas of focus.

“The advantage of having the NEIDL in an academic, research-intensive institution is that it gives us the ability to address broad questions about infectious diseases,” he says. “That means we are going to be recruiting people from a variety of disciplines: engineers, chemists, biologists, ecologists. Emerging infectious diseases are about humans encroaching on animal territories, and it’s about global warming and changes in habitats. We’re not just doing research on individual pathogens and how they function, but also trying to globally understand where these diseases come from and how we can model, predict, and prevent their spread to humans.”

Corley earned a BS in zoology and a PhD in microbiology and immunology from Duke University. He has been MED’s microbiology chair since 1994, a position he says taught him to work across disciplines and build broad collaborations between the Charles River and Medical Campuses.

“We want to be a premier emerging infectious diseases institute, not only in the United States, but in the world,” he says. “And I think we have the potential for doing exactly that.”

This BU Today article was written by Barbara Moran