Karen DeSalvo, M.D., former national coordinator for health IT, is joining the faculty at the Dell Medical School at The University of Texas at Austin in January.
At Dell Med, she will join a growing health policy group that includes health policy expert, Mark McClellan, M.D., Ph.D., who led the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services under President George W. Bush.
Starting in January, DeSalvo will serve as a professor in the Division of Primary Care and Value-Based Health, with a primary appointment in the Department of Internal Medicine and a secondary appointment in the Department of Population Health.
The Department of Population Health is led by its inaugural chair, William Tierney, M.D., who came to the Dell Medical School after serving as President and CEO of the Regenstrief Institute in Indianapolis.
“Karen is an absolute star who is defining the future of medicine. She’s held positions in the White House and was critical to the recovery in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. She recognizes that data is the key to improving the health of populations,” said Dr. Clay Johnston, dean of the Dell Medical School, in a prepared statement. “This also demonstrates the important role Dell Med can play in vital ongoing policy conversations, at every level of government, about ways to move the system’s focus toward health, not health care.”
She will work on a range of projects that involve different parts of the medical school and take advantage of work happening on the University of Texas campus in the areas of community health, medical care and research related to the social determinants of health. And she will look to leverage technology and digital health in traditional public health programs and strategies — both to advance health beyond the traditional medical model and to address issues where people live, learn, work and play.
“Awareness that health means more than health care cuts across the Dell Medical School. As a brand-new institution, it has a unique opportunity to design an educational, clinical and community approach to health,” DeSalvo said in a statement. “The innovation that’s happening here is exciting, and I look forward to joining the dynamic and distinguished team of leaders.”
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