Establishing the Vision: IU School of Medicine launches 2023 Strategic Plan
Indiana University School of Medicine launched its 2030 Strategic Plan in spring 2023. The Strategic Plan outlines the school’s ambitious vision and provides direction for the school’s priorities, strategics and decisions—all aimed at advancing excellence in research, education and clinical care. The three pillars of the plan are:
- Maximize learner success statewide
- Accelerate discovery and clinical translation
- Improve health and wellness of the people of Indiana and beyond
Maximizing learner success
‘Near-perfect’ Match Day
In March, IU School of Medicine celebrated a nearly perfect 99.7% match rate for fourth-year medical students who successfully matched into residency programs in 38 states across the country. The Class of 2023 matched 354 students, with 107 of those entering residency programs affiliated with IU School of Medicine or IU Health. Helping to fulfill a significant need for primary care physicians, 38% of the class matched into primary care specialties including family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, and obstetrics and gynecology.
Recruitment and training of URM students
A $15.4 million grant from the Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) will provide four years of funding for the Indiana Primary Care Advancement in Clinical Training (INPACT) program. The goals of the program are to recruit more students from medically underserved areas of the state and to provide doctors with the tools needed to offer high-quality primary and specialty care to vulnerable populations.
IU leading point-of-care ultrasound training
IU School of Medicine is investing in portable ultrasound systems for all students, residents and fellows across seven specialties at the academic health center in Indianapolis. POCUS is a handheld diagnostic imaging tool used at the bedside which many physicians consider the “stethoscope of the future” to be routinely used to help diagnose and direct medical care.
Supporting resident wellness
In August, the Talwar family established the Eleanor Talwar Resident Wellness Fund, which is the first donation IU School of Medicine has ever received specifically to support resident wellness. The fund will be used to supply healthy snacks for medical residents working long shifts and will help support residents experiencing personal challenges.
Accelerating discovery and clinical translation
Discoveries in Alzheimer’s disease
IU School of Medicine faculty researchers gave more than 150 presentations at the 2023 Alzheimer’s Association International Conference, the largest and most influential international meeting dedicated to advancing dementia science, held in Amsterdam, Netherlands, in July. Cristian Lasagna-Reeves, PhD, was awarded the Inge Grundke-Iqbal Award for Alzheimer’s Research, recognizing the most impactful study published in Alzheimer’s research over the preceding two years. Lasagna-Reeves is working with the TREAT-AD drug discovery center to develop a new therapy that would target the Bassoon protein and potentially stop tau tangles from forming in the brain.
IU School of Medicine is also a clinical trial site for three Alzheimer’s treatments that have the potential to slow disease development. These drugs target amyloid plaques and are intended to help people with early symptomatic Alzheimer’s disease. Indiana resident Leo Stentz was the first patient at IU Health to receive the drug lecanemab in a new clinical trial.
‘Top 25’ NIH-funded research programs
IU School of Medicine researchers received over $214.8 million in total funding from the National Institutes of Health during federal fiscal year 2022, making the school the No. 14 NIH-funded public medical school in the country. According to the Blue Ridge Institute for Medical Research, 11 IU School of Medicine departments ranked in the top 25 nationally for NIH funding. Five departments ranked in the top 15: Medical and Molecular Genetics (6); Pediatrics (7); Biostatistics and Health Data Science (10); Obstetrics and Gynecology (11); and Anatomy, Cell Biology and Physiology (14).
Indiana CTSI funding to advance health research
The Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) secured nearly $38 million in renewed funding from the NIH for the next seven years. The Indiana CTSI is a partnership among Indiana’s top research universities (IU, Purdue and Notre Dame) and the Regenstrief Institute. The CTSI provides resources, education, training and funding opportunities to health researchers across the state.
Delaying the onset of Type 1 diabetes
Emily Sims, MD, is leading a new clinical trial known as Tadpol, which builds upon years of research by IU School of Medicine physicians and scientists. Hoosier Emmaline Swigert, age 10, is among those enrolled in the trial for a drug that could preserve insulin production for people in the early stages of Type 1 diabetes.
Improving health and wellness of the people of Indiana
Clinician Cluster Recruitment Initiative to increase faculty diversity
IU School of Medicine launched the Clinician Cluster Recruitment Initiative, a four-year initiative that will help the school recruit 20 faculty who come from communities which have been historically underrepresented in medicine and who share lived experiences with people in Indiana who are facing health disparities. The recruitment initiative aims to address targeted impact areas identified by IU Health including cardiovascular health, maternal and infant mortality, and mental health care. Program participants will receive career and professional development while building a strong professional network. As part of the cluster initiative, they will participate in the Leadership in Academic Medicine Program (LAMP), which has been successfully training leaders for 20 years.
Nation’s first Latinx Association for Residents and Fellows starts at IU
Three IU School of Medicine residents founded the Latinx Association for Residents and Fellows—the first association of its kind in the United States. In addition to providing a supportive community within the Multicultural Physicians Alliance at IU School of Medicine, the Latinx Association is involved in health care outreach to Spanish-speaking populations and recently received a Service Award for Colorectal Cancer Outreach, Prevention and Year-Round Excellence from the American College of Gastroenterology. Founders Eleazer Montalvan, MD, Stephanie Cortez, MD, and Mariel Luna, MD, want the association to become a model for other institutions.
First health equity symposium grows collaborative efforts
A collaborative known as HEAL-R (Health Equity Advancing through Learning health systems Research), hosted its first health equity symposium in November. The event was designed to be a platform for researchers, clinicians, educators and community members to discuss the latest advancements, challenges and opportunities in health equity research. HEAL-R is a collaborative of IU School of Medicine, IU Health’s Office of Equity Research and Engagement, the Indiana CTSI, the Regenstrief Institute and the Irsay Institute at IU Bloomington.
IU leads in LGBTQ+ health care
IU School of Medicine hosted the sixth annual LGBTQ+ Health Care Conference, held virtually in March. The conference is designed for health care professionals, learners, researchers, patients and community organizations that seek to understand the unique health considerations and barriers to health care in the LGBTQ+ population. Nationally known speakers presented on topics including community advocacy, navigating insurance and the law, supporting families of gender diverse people, HIV/STI reduction, and identity development.
Welcoming new leaders
Over the past year, IU School of Medicine has welcomed top leaders for several departments:
- David Rosmarin, MD, MA, chair of Dermatology, came to IU in January 2023 and was formerly at Tufts Medical Center in Boston, where he was vice chair for education and research, and director of the clinical trials unit.
- Michael Feldman, MD, PhD, chair of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, started in February and was previously at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine, serving as vice chair for clinical services and director of pathology informatics in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine.
- Stephanie Ware, MD, PhD, became chair of Medical and Molecular Genetics in September after serving as interim chair since January 2023. Ware is a professor of pediatrics and medical and molecular genetics, vice chair of clinical affairs with the department, and director of the cardiovascular genetics program in the Herman B Wells Center for Pediatric Research. Learn how Ware is leading integration of genetics into clinical care.
- Jason Allen, MD, PhD, chair of Radiology and Imaging Sciences, started October 1 and previously was the director of the Division on Neuroradiology and Director of Laboratory Imaging Neurosciences at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta. He is an NIH-funded researcher employing advanced MRI to study traumatic brain injury and cerebrovascular diseases. Learn about the new era for radiology at IU under Allen’s leadership.
- Mitesh Shah, MD, became the chair of Neurological Surgery in December after serving as interim chair since April 2022. Shah is the Paul B. Nelson Professor of Neurological Surgery, specializing in surgical techniques for brain tumors, and he is co-director of the IU School of Medicine/IU Health Neuroscience Institute.
IU School of Medicine also welcomed two new leaders to its executive leadership team in 2023.
- Chemen Neal, MD, became the school’s first executive associate dean for equity and inclusion, and chief diversity officer, in January 2023. Neal is an associate clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology and previously served as assistant dean for student success and advocacy. Learn how Neal uses coaching to guide the school community toward inclusive excellence.
- Neil Perdue, PhD, joined IU School of Medicine in May 2023 as senior executive advisor to the dean. Perdue previously served as executive vice president and chief strategy officer at the University of Indianapolis. He plays a key role in developing and communicating the vision for the 2030 Strategic Plan.
Building for the future
Construction is progressing on the new Medical Education and Research Building in Indianapolis. The flagship facility is scheduled to open in summer 2025, giving IU School of Medicine room to grow, innovate and teach. The school’s new home in Indianapolis will be equipped with classrooms, labs, technology and expertise to uncover answers to medicine’s most challenging problems.
See how the facility is taking shape in real time with TrueLook live video.