Section Update


Chair’s Notes

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The UW Department of Family Medicine has made significant progress in the last year. Important milestones included the identification of a new leader for the UW DFM family medicine residency program with Dr. Dave Evans at the helm. The baton was passed from Dr. Bill Phillips to Dr. Jeanne Cawse-Lucas as the holder of the Theodore J. Phillips Endowed Professor of Family Medicine. The UW DFM was honored to receive the largest gift in its history from the Bernard Osher Foundation to establish an Osher Center of Integrative Medicine at UW. We continue to support expansion of family medicine residency programs in the state of Washington and emphasize expanding the pipeline throughout the medical education journey. Please see below for more details about the outstanding work moving forward in the Department of Family Medicine.

Paul James

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Section Updates

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Change has been a theme in the Administrative Core for over a year as we continue our aim to provide excellent service to the Department.

  • Eric Tobiason, Director, extended his military leave for another year. Susan Silbernagel joined the Department as interim Director in April, 2018.
  • Kathleen Baker, Clinical Faculty Coordinator, started in May 2018. She manages the 1,400 volunteer and UWNC paid clinical faculty appointments for us.
  • Jonathon Clark, HR Coordinator, started in August and is assisting the HR team.
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Medical Student Education

Students and Programs

The medical school class of 2018 had 217 graduates, 38 of which matched into Family Medicine.  Of those 38 students, 23 stayed within the WWAMI region.

WAFP continued its support of the Family Medicine Interest Group with funding that was used for workshop supplies and food during the 2017-2018 academic year.  Over 200 UW students attended Seattle Family Medicine Interest Group events last year.

In August of this year, 52 University of Washington WWAMI students attended the AAFP National conference.  This is the highest number of students ever to attend from the UW.
2017-2018 was the inaugural year for the Community-oriented Urban Scholars Program (CUSP).  CUSP is a comprehensive approach to diversifying the UWSOM student population and addressing WWAMI’s urban underserved physician workforce shortage through pipeline development and community-based medical school training.  The CUSP Scholars engage in a four year, integrated curriculum which offers in depth public health training, clinical experiences in underserved settings.  The program includes mentorship, reflection and service learning. In Autumn 2017, the team of Toby Keys, Amanda Kost and Genya Shimkin selected the first cohort (4 students) for the CUSP scholars.
 Additionally, two new courses were added and the program hosted its first student pipeline event with community colleges.

UW Medicine/ School of Medicine 

MSE faculty participated in the LCME review in March, and a number of MSE programs / courses were highlighted as models of success in the internal review.

Faculty/Staff News and Updates:

  • Sam Griffin joined MSE as the Family Medicine Clerkship Manager on 01 August.  Sam grew up on Mercer Island, and went to the University of Oregon at Eugene and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Economics with minors in business administration and environmental studies.  He then received his Masters in Public Administration from the Evans School of Public Policy and Governance at the UW.   Sam spent two years as an English teacher in Taiwan, and has held other various jobs such as Intrinsic Impact Analyst for UW Meany Center for the Performing Arts, Policy Analyst with the Seattle Housing Authority, and Majority Staff Assistant for the Idaho State Senate.  He is an avid bicyclist and hiker.
  • Sharon Dobie, MD, retired June 30, 2018, after more than 29 years with the Department.   Sharon will continue to work on a limited basis with the Underserved Pathway Program.  Dr. Dobie was recognized this year as the Washington Academy of Family Physicians Family Medicine Educator of the Year. The WAFP presents this award in recognition of “excellence in teaching, development of innovative teaching models or implementation of outstanding education programs.”
  • Jeanne Cawse-Lucas, MD, was promoted to the rank of Associate Professor as of July 1.  Earlier this year Jeanne was also name the Theodore J. Phillips Endowed Professor – a high honor!  Jeanne continues to serve as WAFP Speaker, House of Delegates.
  • Tomoko Sairenji, MD, has been selected to co-direct SOM new Advanced Patient Clerkships, a UWSOM requirement in Phase 3:  Explore and Focus.  Dr. Sairenji was also awarded the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine New Faculty Scholar Award.
  • Dr. Amanda Kost has been selected to co-chair 2019 Society of Teachers of Family Medicine MSE Conference.  Dr. Kost has also been named Associate Director of the Medical Student Education Program.
  • Clinical Professor Emeritus and past Theodore J. Phillips endowed professor, William (Bill) Phillips, MD, received the NAPCRG 2017 Distinguished Research Mentor Award recognizing outstanding career contributions through mentorship in research.
  • The MSE section hired a new faculty member, Kim Kardonsky, MD, after a rigorous and lengthy recruitment process. She started July 1 and her roles include serving as the Director of both the Underserved Pathway and the Targeted Rural Underserved Scholars Track (TRUST) program.  The Underserved Pathway helps prepare future physicians to care for vulnerable and underserved populations. The Pathway engages students in three educational venues: mentoring, developing a foundation of knowledge, and the creation of real-world experiences.  Over 300 students, across all four medical school classes, annually enroll in the Pathway. Since 2006, 366 students have graduated from the Underserved Pathway, which is a strong predictor of students matching into Family Medicine and other primary care residencies.  TRUST is a four-year integrated pathway for entering medical students interested in careers working in underserved rural communities and small cities in the WWAMI region.  TRUST was established in 2008, and has grown significantly in the past 10 years, accepting 34 new students with the entering class of 2018.
  • Edwin Lindo, JD, joined the MSE section on August 1. His faculty and student development activities focus on addressing issues of racial and social inequities found in medical education, the bedside, and in medical research.  He will dedicate time to MEDEX Northwest and to the medical student education and residency sections as well as assist with diversity committees and initiatives and leadership development.  Specifically, he will work with the DFM Community-Focused Urban Scholars Program (CUSP). Other efforts will include broader development efforts within School of Medicine such as the Ecology of Health and Medicine course, which integrates principals of ethics, professionalism, inter professional education and communication, health equity, diversity, social determinants of health, global and population health, lifelong learning, health systems form and function and health systems improvements through a four-year curriculum. He will create an elective course on Critical Race Theory and Medicine, which will address an unmet need within current elective offerings in UWSOM.
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Family Medicine Residency

In June, the residency said goodbye to our graduating class and ushered them into the world of practicing physicians.  We also welcomed eight new residents from around the country.  They are off to a great start and promise to be terrific family physicians.  We also have hired a new faculty member, Alexa Lindley.  Alexa comes to us from UCSF.  She is a former Chief Resident there and recently completed a global health fellowship.

Within the residency we continue to strive to make the program the best it can be.  We have implemented a longitudinal curriculum on social determinants of health.  We are exploring ways to reinforce the inpatient and obstetrics services.  The Rural Training Track in Chelan cleared its last hurdle when it was approved by the local hospital board.

The new recruitment season has begun.  The program sent 11 people (5 faculty, 4 residents and 2 staff) to Kansas City for the NCFMR.  Along with all the WWAMI residencies, we were busy sharing our programs with the 1000’s of medical students looking for programs.  In the coming weeks we will gear up for the start of recruitment season.

Residency Staff Update:

The Residency Staff team has some exceptional members with Edison Tacardon and Seo Song on our administrative leadership team. The Residency Section is very pleased and excited to announce that Team Residency is fully staffed with our two new members, Ms. Ashley Skinner as our Residency Program Coordinator and Mr. Tom Ouk as our Residency Program Operations Specialist.

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WWAMI Network

The WWAMI Family Medicine Residency Network continues to expand.  We have grown from 18 programs in 2010 to 31 in 2018.  In the past year, we have added a program in Nampa, ID, a rural training track in Chelan, WA and two osteopathic residency programs that have received ACGME accreditation this year­–Sollus Northwest Family Medicine in Grandview and Skagit Regional Health Family Medicine Residency in Skagit Valley.  We continue to have a number of developing programs and RTTs. Spokane Holy Family is making progress developing a core residency program that includes a second training site in Pullman. Discussions continue for a core program in Walla Walla and RTTs in Elma and Omak are under discussion. We estimate by July 2019 we will have a total of 652 residents in the WWAMI region, 409 of those in Washington state.

Network leadership has continued to collaborate with osteopathic GME leaders in the WWAMI community to facilitate the transition towards all family medicine residency programs becoming ACGME accredited. At this point all five programs have submitted program applications and two have received ACGME accreditation.  Osteopathic program directors have been fully integrated into the program directors group and regularly attend the quarterly Network program director meetings.

The Network has been active nationally this year, presenting at STFM, RPS/PDW, and GMEI.  The Network’s Associate Director for Program Development, Judy Pauwels, MD and Research Scientist, Amanda Weidner, MPH just published “The Cost of Family Medicine Residency Training: Impacts of Federal and State Funding” in the February 2018 issue of Family Medicine.  In addition, we are happy to announce, Network Director, Frederick Chen, MD, MPH, has been elected the 2018 President Elect for STFM.

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Two of the founding research centers in the Department celebrate major milestones this year. The WWAMI Rural Health Research Center (RHRC) celebrates its 30 year Anniversary of conducting research that informs rural health care. Meanwhile, the UW Center for Health Workforce Studies (CHWS) celebrates its 20th year Anniversary. The CHWS Center conducts health workforce research to inform health workforce planning and policy. Both centers are sharing these significant anniversaries with presentations and panels at various regional and national research meetings, including the Northwest Rural Health Conference in Spokane, AcademyHealth (held in Seattle this year), and at the North American Primary Care Research Group Annual Meeting, among others. UW CHWS Deputy Director Sue Skillman received the Leah Layne Memorial Health Leadership Award by the Washington Rural Health Association. This award is based on demonstrated leadership skills, someone who best exemplifies Leah’s spirit, vision, foresight, and dedication in the field of rural health.

Our WWAMI region Practice and Research Network (WPRN) continues to conduct collaborative research with the 60 clinics in this network. One of the very large current trials which the WPRN is playing a leading role in is a PCORI-funded trial comparing two ways of combining behavioral health care and primary care for adults. The IBHPC trial will be following 3000 patients who have both medical and behavioral health problems from dozens of clinics, for up to 5 years.

Other recent research awards and news include a PCORI funded Patient Engagement Award to Dr Emily Godfrey for women with Cystic Fibrosis and their reproductive health needs. Our Primary Care Innovation Lab (PCI-Lab) continues to work across the academy-industry divide, with grants and contracts with industry developing new electronic stethoscopes, and point of care tests.
Dr Matthew Thompson continues to lead a PCORI-funded study that is identifying the outcomes of imaging tests that are most important to patients, and is involved with another large PCORI funded trial conducted at Kaiser Permanente (PI Dr Bev Green) involving many of the KP clinics in the northwest to compare the accuracy of home, kiosk, and office BP readings to diagnose hypertension.

WA Portal news ( The PCI-Lab project Healthier Washington practice transformation support hub resource portal (WA Portal for short!), has recently received three grants for ongoing work totaling approximately $300K. This funding comes from federal sources (CMMI and CDC) for ongoing support of state efforts for practice transformation and preparation for value based reimbursement of clinical care. We are eager to partner with any ongoing work to support clinical services that might use this platform.

Hollywood actor Bill Pullman joined an initiative involving advisors in the UW Department of Family Medicine, to launch ARMADA, the Antibiotic Resistance Monitoring, Analysis and Diagnostics Alliance. This is a publicly supported Global Biobank that will for the first time combine big-data and rapid bacteria tracking approaches to create a virtual “shield” against multi-drug resistant superbugs

Research Staff Updates:

The Research Section welcomed Lesley Pfeifer as our new Grants Specialist focused primarily on pre-award work. Lesley comes to us with extensive experience developing and managing budgets and preparing proposals, IRB applications and progress reports. In her last position she managed the finances for the Center for Engineering, Learning & Teaching (CELT) in the Department of Human Centered Design and Engineering.

Katie Osterhage joined the WPRN-Team as a part-time Research Coordinator. Katie worked at Fred Hutch for a few years managing a community-based participatory research project with HIV researchers and urban native communities. Most recently she has been at UW’s Northwest Center for Public Health Practice where she has managed a study about health information management among older adults (SOARING Study).

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Sports Medicine

The sports medicine section was well-represented at the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine with Kimberly Harmon, Ashwin Rao, Hank Pelto and Dave Siebert teaching standing room only courses on ECG interpretation in athletes.   Dr. Drezner, Siebert, and Williams all had research podium presentations.  We said goodbye to fellow Lizzie Williams, D.O. at the end of June.  She will be taking a job with San Diego Sports Medicine and we welcomed Ashley Austin, M.D. from the University of Virginia as our next fellow.   We finished out the spring with exciting performances by the University of Washington’s baseball and softball teams.   Dr. Rao accompanied baseball to the regional tournament and Dr. O’Kane the softball team to the championship semi-final.   Meanwhile Dr. Pelto travelled with the crew team to Henley, England for the Henley Royal Regatta.  He is now back in Seattle and continuing his work leading the musculoskeletal curriculum for medical students and serving as a member of the School of Medicine admissions Executive Committee. Our Sports Medicine faculty are gearing up for fall sports with Seahawks and Husky football underway, soccer and volleyball starting soon thereafter.   Research continues into sudden cardiac death, athlete mental health, concussion and regenerative medicine.

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Palliative Care

After almost 1.5 years of outstanding team work, the UW DFM and University of WA was granted a $5 million endowment and $500,000 grant to create an Osher Center and Clinic for Integrative Medicine at UW.  Dr Marchand is the founding executive director, and Dr Iman Majd is the Osher Clinic director at the Ballard Neighborhood Clinic. Dr. Heather Tick and Dr. Majd are the associate clinical directors, Dr Matthew Thompson, DFM Vice Chair for Research and Dr. Cynthia Price, a researcher in the School of Nursing, are the associate research directors, and Dr. Misbah Keen and Dr. Marchand are the associate education directors.

The Osher Collaborative includes IM centers at Harvard, UCSF, Vanderbilt, University of Miami, Northwestern, and the Karolinska Institute in Sweden.  Drs. James, Marchand, Majd, and Tick will be attending the Osher Collaborative Annual Meeting in Stockholm in September 2018.

Dr. James Fausto will be assuming the role of Director of UWMC Palliative Care Program from Dr. Marchand.  Dr. Marchand, the former director, will continue as the Farber Endowed Professor for Palliative Care Education, and section head of palliative care for the UW Department of Family Medicine.  She is currently involved in a Washington Department of Health initiative to provide TeleHealth in Palliative Care to rural clinicians.

Dr. Fausto is graduated from his executive masters program in health administration from UW in August 2018.  He was honored in that program with the Emerging Leader Award.

Dr. Lu Marchand received the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine Gold Humanism Award at the 2018 annual STFM conference in Washington, DC in May.  She has also been selected to deliver the 8th Annual James McClellan Lecture, Whitman College, Walla, Walla, WA, October 13, 2018.
 Dr. Marchand will present on “Humanities and Humanity: How May Palliative Care Draw Them Together?”

The UWMC Palliative Care Program was recertified in 2018 by the Joint Commission for Advanced Palliative Care Certification.
The UWMC PC program is in the process of recruiting an advanced practice clinician.

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MEDEX Northwest PA Program

The 2018/2019 Admissions cycle began on May 1st with a final application deadline of September 1st, 2018. In the first three months applicants indicating interest in the MEDEX program totaled over 2,270 people and with two months left in the application cycle this number is expected to grow. MEDEX will begin the interview process in late September 2018 and will likely interviewer over 300 candidates. We expect to fill all 140 seats with qualified students at all four campuses by the end of December. The 2019 entering cohort will matriculate in July 2019.

In summer 2018, 139 new PA students, representing our four campuses, enrolled in the MEDEX program. This cohort is widely diverse with 32% minority students across campuses. The incoming Seattle cohort, totaling 49 students, has the highest percentage of minority students at 51% and of that number nearly 33% are URM students!

In addition to an increase of URM students in the incoming cohort the diversity in the MEDEX classroom includes gender (45% men 55% women), age (21 – 54 years), military (19% representing all branches), and LGBTQI. It is our goal to maintain or exceed these numbers each year and set a standard for other PA programs to follow.

In August 2018, 121 students will graduate in ceremonies at our four campuses, moving on to becoming practicing PAs in the WWAMI region and beyond.

MEDEX hired one new part-time PA faculty in Anchorage, Brian Pierce, PA-C (Anchorage Class 7) and Tara Hook, PA-C, who joined the didactic team in Seattle.


Department News & Highlights