WHSC Office of Well-Being: The First 90 Days

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April 21, 2022

WHSC Office of Well-Being: The First 90 Days

Health care and academic research, while integral to the health of our nation, are incredibly stressful careers. That’s why we launched the Woodruff Health Sciences Center Office of Well-Being (EmWELL) on January 1, 2022. EmWELL is an integrated program in which employees throughout Emory’s health sciences enterprise, including Emory Healthcare, benefit from collaborative initiatives built around physical and emotional health and compassion.

Under the leadership of co-chief well-being officers Tim Cunningham, RN, DrPH, and Chad Ritenour, MD, EmWELL has had a strong and productive first 90 days. As described in EmWELL’s first written update to faculty and staff, the team’s initial focus has been on assessment, infrastructure, and measurement, including a series of listening sessions with faculty and staff across the breadth of the health sciences.

These key steps are laying the groundwork to advance EmWELL’s goals of facilitating systemwide changes that enable team members to effectively practice in a culture that prioritizes and promotes wellness and professional fulfillment, while at the same time optimizing the function of Emory’s health system and establishing a robust well-being research foundation.

I appreciate all that EmWELL is doing to ensure our employees can continue to improve lives and provide hope to the people we serve.

Please direct questions and comments to evphafeedback@emory.edu.

Jonathan S. Lewin, MD, FACR
Executive Vice President for Health Affairs, Emory University
Executive Director, Woodruff Health Sciences Center
CEO and Chairman of the Board, Emory Healthcare

SOM Launches Inaugural Diversity Week

The Emory School of Medicine (SOM) will launch its inaugural Diversity Week May 16-20. Diversity Week will be a school-wide celebration of the broad range of identities and experiences that make up our diverse community. The week will feature lectures, breakout sessions, poster presentations, and social activities, including a School of Medicine Block Party. Additionally, the week will be an opportunity to showcase the incredible work being done on topics of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) by the school’s remarkable students, trainees, faculty, and staff.

EUH Operating Unit Offers Implicit Bias Training

The EUH Operating Unit (Emory University Hospital, Emory University Orthopaedics and Spine Hospital, and Emory Wesley Woods Hospital) are putting their commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion into action. With more than 20 offerings and approximately 215 team members trained thus far, the hospitals are offering implicit bias training for all staff, leaders, and providers until July 19 with both virtual and in-person options at their multiple campuses. In the course, participants learn how to better understand implicit biases—attitudes or stereotypes we may hold unknowingly— and what we can do to counteract them in our daily work and daily life. Employees in the EUH Operating Unit can now register via the HLC.

Winship opens immediate care center for patients with cancer

The Rollins Immediate Care Center of Winship opened this week. When patients with cancer have symptoms or side effects—such as acute pain, bleeding, high fevers, vomiting—that require immediate medical care but are not life-threatening, they typically visit the emergency room. At The Rollins Immediate Care Center, Winship's patients see oncologists, oncology nurses, and nurse practitioners, who are trained to deliver specialized triage, diagnostics, and treatments that are often unique to patients with cancer. Having an immediate care center dedicated to patients with cancer and staffed by oncology specialists makes the patients' cancer care seamless. Pictured above: Suresh Ramalingam, Amy Rollins Kreisler, Matt Wain, Pam Rollins, Greg Fenves, and Sagar Lonial. Read more.

Integrating addiction services into primary care

With support from the John and Polly Sparks Foundation, the Addiction Alliance of Georgia—a partnership of Emory Healthcare and the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation—will work with the Grady Health System and other community partners to integrate additional substance use disorder services into Grady’s primary care clinics. The Sparks Foundation previously funded the launch of an Integrated Care Program for Behavioral Health in the Grady Health System, which includes a large hospital and several neighborhood health clinics serving a diverse socioeconomic population in Atlanta. The new grant will build on that program by integrating peer recovery coaches from the Georgia Council on Substance Abuse into Grady’s primary care teams, expanding medication for addiction treatment services throughout the Grady system, and educating all involved on best practices for effective collaboration. Read more.

Schools in WHSC ranked among best in nation

The schools and programs that make up WHSC continue to be ranked among the best in the nation, according to the 2023 edition of U.S. News & World Report’s “America’s Best Graduate Schools” guide. In national rankings:

• Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing (SON) master’s program ranks 2nd. The school’s doctor of nursing practice program is 6th.
• Rollins School of Public Health (RSPH) ranks 4th.
• The School of Medicine (SOM) ranks 22nd among research-oriented medical schools.
• Ranking 2nd is the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering PhD program, a joint effort between SOM, Laney Graduate School and Georgia Tech. Read more.

Liotta lauded for his contributions to lifesaving research

Researcher and inventor Dennis Liotta was named recipient of the 2022 Perkin Medal, the highest honor a scientist can receive for contributions to the field of applied chemistry in the U.S. Liotta, who has served as executive director of the Emory Institute for Drug Development since its inception and is the Samuel Candler Dobbs Professor in the Department of Chemistry, has been instrumental in the creation of novel therapies, including ones that have transformed HIV from a death sentence into a chronic disease. The Society of Chemical Industry, which confers the Perkin Medal, cited Liotta’s groundbreaking research in the biopharmaceutical space, especially antivirals, and noted how his “discovery of emtricitabine and lamivudine was pivotal in changing the tide of the AIDS epidemic.” Read more.

Emory Healthcare’s focus on patient safety and quality earns Georgia Hospital Association awards

The Georgia Hospital Association Partnership for Health and Accountability (PHA) recently presented eight of its prestigious patient safety and quality awards to Emory Healthcare, including two Emory hospitals—Emory University Hospital Midtown and Emory Saint Joseph’s Hospital. The annual awards recognize Georgia health care organizations for their achievements in patient safety, quality and medical outcomes. Read more.

SON creates professorship to advance nursing simulation

The SON has received $3 million to create The Charles F. and Peggy Evans Endowed Distinguished Professorship in Simulation and Innovation. This professorship, which is named in honor of the generous donors who made it possible, will allow the School of Nursing to advance simulation learning and scholarship far into the future. 

Lisa Flowers, professor of gynecology and obstetrics, has been named the new president of the American Society of Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology.

Bruce Greenfield, associate professor in physical therapy, received the 2022 Distinguished Educator in Physical Therapist Education Award.

Wilbur Lam, professor of hematology/oncology, received a Community Award from Georgia Bio at the organization’s annual Golden Helix Awards ceremony.

Kathryn Maples, clinical pharmacy specialist at Winship, received a Hematology/Oncology Pharmacy Association New Practitioner Award.

Nataliya Prokhnevska, a PhD student in Emory’s Immunology and Molecular Pathogenesis Graduate Program, has received an AAI-Thermo Fisher Trainee Achievement Award.

Steven Wolf, professor of rehabilitation medicine, was named a co-recipient of the 2022 Paul Dudley White International Scholar Award.


May 17, 2022: Health Equity Day half-day conference aims to raise awareness and encourage action around the systemic health disparities. The event includes narrative and poster presentations, a case competition, and a keynote address by scientist David R. Williams. 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Zoom. Register.

May 20, 2022: Darren Hutchinson, John Lewis Chair for Civil Rights and Social Justice at Emory School of Law, will discuss anti-antiracism. Hosted in conjunction with the School of Medicine's inaugural Diversity Week. 8 a.m. Zoom and SOM 110. Register.

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