December 2014

Recipient of the Harry F. Dowling Professorship in Infectious Diseases


Rick M. Novak, MD, professor of medicine and chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases

Dr. Novak is an internationally recognized clinician scientist whose leadership, accomplishments, and vision for prevention and treatment of HIV disease have contributed tremendously to our understanding of the disease. He is actively involved with HIV clinical research focused on treatment strategies which have directly shaped the current treatment guidelines. He also serves as the Director of the UIC HIV Community Clinic Network: a network of 7 community based, Ryan White HIV primary care clinics throughout Chicago, which he founded in 1992 in collaboration with the School of Public Health. This program has been supported by nearly $24 million in federal (HRSA) funding since its inception.

December 2014

Recipient of the Edmund F. Foley Professorship in Medicine


Martha Daviglus, MD, PhD, professor of medicine, associate vice chancellor for research, and director of the Institute for Minority Health Research

Dr. Daviglus is an internationally recognized physician scientist whose leadership, accomplishments, and vision for education have contributed tremendously to our local and global societies. Today, Dr. Daviglus’ main project is the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos (HCHS/SOL). The HCHS/SOL is a community-based cohort study of Hispanic/Latino populations in the United States with eld centers in Chicago, Miami, New York, and San Diego. The goals are to identify risk factors that may have a protective or harmful role in the development of cardiovascular disease and other chronic diseases among Hispanic/Latino adults, and to determine the role of acculturation in the prevalence and development of disease.

November 2014

Doctor on the Front Lines of Ebola Crisis 


Olamide Jarrett, assistant professor of medicine, traveled to Sierra Leone Nov. 15  to assist health care workers treating Ebola patients.

I am a first-generation Sierra Leonean-American. While I was born and raised in the U.S., I am very connected to my family in Sierra Leone and still have several aunts, uncles and cousins who live in Sierra Leone.

Every day the Ebola outbreak continues, my family, who so far are all healthy, are at risk of becoming ill and infected. While I am grateful to everyone from around the world who has volunteered to help in this outbreak, it is important to me that Sierra Leonean and Liberian doctors and nurses from the diaspora are part of the response to help their respective countries. After all, this outbreak is happening in our country, our homeland.

Sometimes it’s not enough to talk about how you want to see your country improve or to talk about all the ways it can be a stronger nation. Eventually, you have to be willing to be on the ground and help out in a time of crisis and need.

I am working on the Ebola Isolation Unit in Connaught Hospital, the main government hospital in Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone. The purpose of the isolation unit is to screen for any potential Ebola patients that come to the hospital for care. Outside the hospital all patients are screened for symptoms of Ebola or exposure to a recent Ebola patient. If a patient meets the screening criteria, they are admitted to the Ebola Isolation Unit to be tested for Ebola and receive basic medical care while waiting for their results. Patients found to be negative for Ebola are either discharged home, if they feel better, or sent to the hospital emergency room for further evaluation and treatment. Patients found to have Ebola are sent to treatment centers for additional care.

My work in the unit is to help admit and discharge patients to the isolation unit and assist with any patient care needs while they are there, including feeding patients, providing oral rehydration, medication, etc. I also help prepare and remove the bodies of patients who die.

There is still a lot of work that needs to be done to get the Ebola outbreak under control in Sierra Leone. Currently, there are not enough treatment and isolation beds for all the potential Ebola cases that present for evaluation. Fortunately, additional treatment and isolation units are being set up at this time and will hopefully be up and running within the next month.

I am working with King’s Sierra Leone Partnership, a health system strengthening program established by King’s College in London. They have done an amazing job in setting up the Ebola Isolation Unit and there is never a shortage of personal protective equipment for healthcare workers. There is still a need for additional volunteers to help staff the current and newly opening treatment and holding centers.

What has truly struck me from before I arrived until now is the amount of stigma that health care workers are dealing with. It makes me angry and sad to see people stigmatized for doing a great thing by helping to fight this Ebola crisis in the country. I’ve heard multiple stories of local Sierra Leone nurses who are now ostracized by their families because of their work in the isolation unit. And most of the expats who are volunteering have similar stories of family and friends who have uninvited or cancelled events because they are scared to see them for 21 days when they return.

The additional insult in all of this is the implication that health workers who have volunteered to help those in need would knowingly endanger others if they did become symptomatic. Believe me, if any of us gets any symptoms suspicious for Ebola we would seek care right away because quite frankly, none of us wants to die from Ebola.

I am grateful that my colleagues in the College of Medicine’s Section of Infectious Diseases have been supportive of my trip and have assisted me in any way possible.

- See more at: http://news.uic.edu/doctor-on-the-front-lines-of-ebola-crisis-in-sierra-leone#sthash.7CbAxV6q.dpuf

June 2014

Dr. Winn announced as Interim Director of the University of Illinois Cancer Center


Dr. Winn, UI Cancer Center Interim Director UI health Cancer Center Banner

We are pleased to announce that Dr. Robert Winn has accepted the position of Interim Director of the University of Illinois Cancer Center as of June 16, 2014.

Dr. Winn arrived at University of Illinois Hospital & Health Sciences System in November 2012 as Associate Vice President for Community Based Practice and Visiting Professor of Medicine, Pulmonary, Critical Care, Sleep and Allergy in the Department of Medicine. Dr. Winn, an NCI-funded physician-scientist, formerly practiced at the University of Colorado Hospital and the VA Medical Center in Denver. He has extensive experience in lung cancer research, both as a clinician and a researcher. Clinically, he is a specialist in pulmonary and critical care with a primary interest in lung cancer, and his laboratory focuses on the tumor predictive role of the Wnt pathway. He has laid the groundwork for developing effective and consistent in vitro and in vivo assays to investigate the tumor suppressive role of Wnt 7a in non-small cell lung cancer. Further, Dr. Winn has led and served on a number of diversity committees to develop the next generation of physician-scientists. He has received numerous awards for excellence in teaching, scholarship, leadership and diversity service.

Dr. Winn will maintain his title as Associate Vice President for Community Based Practice. In this role, Dr. Winn is responsible for the management of the UI Health Mile Square Health Center, the 13-site Federally Qualified Health Center network. Mile Square Health Center is dedicated to providing health care for the medically underserved populations in Chicago's south and west side neighborhoods. The goal of Community Based Practice at UI Health is to integrate and coordinate healthcare for the communities we serve; build a 21st Century model of community based healthcare providers linked to the mission of our academic health center; and develop meaningful research programs that can be integrated into the community.

The UI Cancer Center is a robust organization comprised of 258 cancer researchers, representing four University of Illinois campuses: Champaign-Urbana, Chicago, Peoria, and Rockford; 11 colleges, including Engineering, Veterinary Medicine, Agriculture, Consumer, & Environmental Sciences and six health sciences colleges of Applied Health Sciences, Dentistry, Nursing, Medicine, Pharmacy, and the School of Public Health. The mission of the Cancer Center is to provide all Illinoisans access to cutting edge treatment, innovative clinical trials, preventative and community health through creative educational and outreach programs designed to prevent and cure cancer. A longstanding goal of the Cancer Center is to achieve designation by the National Cancer Institute.

A visioning process, with the input of Cancer Center members and University leadership, is underway in the Cancer Center. We are confident that Dr. Winn's expertise, enthusiasm, and understanding of our community will be an asset as we complete this process and move forward with the goal of being a comprehensive cancer program. We are delighted to welcome him in this new leadership role.


Jerry Bauman
Interim Vice President for Health Affairs

Dimitri T. Azar
Dean of the College of Medicine

Lon S. Kaufman
Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs & Provost

Robert A. Easter
President, University of Illinois

April 2014

American Thoracic Society Hill Day


Patricia W. Finn, MD, professor of medicine, department Head, and American Thoracic Society (ATS) president 2013-2014, and Dean Schraufnagel, MD, professor of medicine, Vice Head for faculty affairs, and a former ATS present, along with members of the ATS Research Advocacy Committee traveled to Washington, DC to meet with members of the United States Congress on March 26th. The ATS sends members to Washington each year to advocate for respiratory health as part of ATS Hill Day, which this year corresponded with World TB Day. ATS Hill Day focused on the issues of NIH research funding, tuberculosis funding, tobacco control, the Medicare sustainable growth rate formula, and VA research funding.

Dr. Patricia Finn and Teresa Barnes from the Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis, are pictured below (left) with Senator Mark Kirk. Senator Kirk represents the State of Illinois and the University of Illinois in the United States Senate.

Drs. Patricia Finn and Dean Schraufnagel are pictured (right) with Congressman Danny Davis. Congressman Davis the represents the 7th District of Illinois, which includes the University of Illinois at Chicago and the Illinois Medical District.

March 2014

Heart Failure Week

Carolyn Dickens, MSN, NP, Hospital Cardiovascular Administration, along with a team of heart failure nurses, Advanced Practice Nurses, College of Nursing Faculty, and College of Pharmacy Faculty participated in Heart Failure Week. Heart Failure Week ran from February 10, 2014 thru February 13, 2014. The team staffed tables in two locations: the University of Illinois Hospital lobby and the Outpatient Care Center lobby. The team educated patients about symptoms of heart failure, how to implement a low sodium diet, and risk management. They screened patients for hypertension and had a daily raffle of scales, pill boxes, and heart healthy cookbooks. The event was sponsored by the Division of Cardiology.

March 2014

Fellows In Training Research Symposium


The Illinois Chapter of the American College of Cardiology hosted its Annual Fellows-In-Training Research Symposium on March 12, 2014. For the second consecutive year, UIC fellows captured the most awards with the top prize again going to a UIC fellow. David Vance, MD, won top honors for his research project titled "Determinants of lesion efficacy with a 4mm irrigated catheter" and Li Zhou, MD, PhD, received honors as a runner-up for her project titled "SCN5A mRNA Splicing Variants in Blood Can Predict ICD Events in Heart Failure".
Dr. Vance in a 3rd year cardiology fellow and will be staying at UIC next year as an electrophysiology fellow. Dr. Zhou is a cardiology fellow in the research track, and will begin her clinical training at UIC next year.

Pictured (Left to Right): Drs. Li Zhou and David Vance

December 2013

Message From Leadership

Wishing happy holidays to you and your family from the Department of Medicine!

It has been an extraordinary year in the Department of Medicine. While there are always challenges, we view them as opportunities, and we look forward to working together in the new year. We thank all of our faculty, fellows, residents, and staff for their hard work and dedication to our mission, and we wish you and your families a happy and healthy holiday season. In the ever-changing health care environment, we continue to provide excellent care in service to our underprivileged patients and the citizens of Illinois. In addition, we continue to expand our strong portfolio of NIH-funded and clinical research, which will deliver tomorrow’s treatments and cures to our diverse community. Each of our health care professionals continue to have a strong commitment to delivering the highest quality health care to every patient who walks through our doors, while providing an outstanding educational experience for all of our students and trainees. The Department of Medicine remains committed to our mission to reduce or eliminate health disparities in our community, the state of Illinois, and beyond.

This year it has been a pleasure to welcome four new division chiefs who are all physician-scientists with a strong commitment to the clinical mission: Steve Dudek, MD in the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, Sleep, and Allergy; Barbara Jung, MD in the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology; Rick Novak, MD in the Division of Infectious Diseases; and Damiano Rondelli, MD in the Division of Hematology/Oncology.

Our cabinet of vice Heads has been hard at work improving all aspects of the department. In the clinical arena, we have improved our patient care experience, including access to care and Press Ganey data. Our educational programs continue to receive accolades and full accreditations, and the most recent match yielded a diverse group of promising trainees. We look forward to welcoming them this summer. Faculty affairs completed the first annual faculty survey, and we are happy to report that in response to the survey, we have been working to increase interaction and collaboration between clinical and investigative faculty. As one example, our revamped department Grand Rounds has been incredibly popular and we look forward to gathering with all of you on Tuesday mornings. In terms of scholarly activities, we were pleased to offer bridge funding awards to investigators on the cusp of receiving extramural awards, and in June we hosted the first annual Department of Medicine Research Day. We look forward to expanding and improving this annual program to include not only basic science, but also clinical studies, case reports, and quality improvement projects. In October, we hosted the first Urban Global Health Celebration, which was a great success in raising funds to support educational experiences abroad and celebrating the exceptional projects members of the department are engaged in to promote urban global health.

While we could not possibly mention all of the outstanding achievements of the department in this short message, we urge you to read our weekly “Updates from the Head” and to send your updates to Michael Paprzyca (paprzyca@uic.edu) to share with all.

It was wonderful to see so many of you at our dinner and dancing celebration this past Friday! The energy, excitement, and holiday cheer in the air made it a truly memorable evening.

Looking forward to a happy holiday season and a joyous new year!

All the best,

Patricia W. Finn, MD
Earl M. Bane Professor
Head, Department of Medicine

George T. Kondos, MD
Vice Head for Clinical Affairs

Dean Schraufnagel, MD
Vice Head for Faculty Affairs

Fred Zar, MD
Vice Head for Education

Chet Szerlag, MBA, FACHE
Vice Head for Finance

Jason Yuan, MD, PhD
Vice Head for Scholarly Activities

Max Brito, MD, MPH
Vice Head for Urban Global Health

 December 2013

New Chief of Gastroenterology/Hepatology

Barbara Jung, MD joined the Department of Medicine team in November as associate professor and the new division chief of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology. Dr. Jung comes to UIC College of Medicine from the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, where she worked since 2009. Before Northwestern University, Dr. Jung was a junior faculty member at the University of California, San Diego, where she also completed internal medicine residency and fellowship in gastroenterology. Dr. Jung attended medical school at Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich Germany.


Dr. Jung brings considerable amount of research, clinical, and teaching experience to the department of medicine. Dr. Jung has research interests in colorectal cancer, mechanisms of tumor progression, molecular pathology, activin signaling and tumor progression, chemoprevention of colorectal cancer, and tumor genetics and clinical outcomes. Dr. Jung is an R01-funded investigator, and currently PI of a grant entitled Activin Signaling and Regulation in the Colon. Dr. Jung has clinical interests in colon cancer, colon polyps, familial/hereditary colon cancer, and polyposis syndromes.

Fun facts include: Dr. Jung speaks German, French, and some Italian; she was a competitive back stroke swimmer and still swims today. Outside of medicine, Dr. Jung likes yoga, cooking, and spending time with her family.

We welcome Dr. Barbara Jung to the UIC Department of Medicine team!


October 2013



Urban Global Health Celebration

The Urban Global Health Celebration on Saturday, October 19, 2013 and was a great success with 130 attendees for the morning/afternoon symposium and 193 attendees for the evening celebration festivities. During the morning/afternoon symposium, 29 posters were presented by students, trainees, and faculty. Oral presentations and panels given on a variety of urban and global topics were presented by a medical student, trainees, and faculty from the College of Medicine and the School of Public Health.
The Urban Global Health Celebration helped fundraise for Department of Medicine Urban and Global Health initiatives, including work in the Dominican Republic and India. The Dominican Republic and India projects are international learning and service opportunities open to students and trainees.

The Urban Global Health Excellence Award was presented in recognition of outstanding service and dedication to urban and global health. Awardees included:
• Lauren Hughes
• Supriya Mehta
• Santosh Saraf

The Urban Global Health Certificate of Recognition was presented in recognition of outstanding poster presentations. Awardees included:
• Courtney Babb
• Kirk Douglas
• Elijah Odoyo-June

October 2013

Bernie Mac Town Hall Meeting

On October 3, 2013, the Bernie Mac Foundation visited the UI Health to celebrate the one year anniversary of the opening of the Bernie Mac Sarcoidosis Translational Advanced Research (STAR) Center. The morning town hall meeting included presentations on the latest advancements in sarcoidosis research and the work UI Health is doing to find treatments and a cure. Speakers included Drs. Jerry Bauman, Dimitri Azar, Nadera Sweiss, Patricia Finn, Enrico Benedetti, George Kondos, Damiano Rondelli, Steve Dudek, David Perkins, and Dean Schraufnagel, among many others participating in translational research and clinical care of these patients at UI Health. The morning town hall ended with an opportunity for patients to speak, and all expressed their gratitude for Dr. Nadera Sweiss for her care and compassion in guiding them through their treatment. The Bernie Mac Foundation gave $50,000 to UI Health for use in sarcoidosis research.
Pictured above (left to right): George Kondos, Patricia Finn, Steve Dudek, Nadera Sweiss, Rhonda McCullough (president and CEO of the Bernie Mac Foundation), David Perkins, and Dean Schraufnagel.

September 2013

Bridging The Gap 2013

On September 13th, the Departments of Surgery and Medicine presented the 10th Annual Bridging the Gap: Emerging Health Issues in Underrepresented Minorities at the UIC Forum. The event was well attended with University Leadership, University Faculty, and invited speakers. Invited Speakers included Gary H. Gibbons, MD, Director of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute at the National Institutes for Health and Jesse White, Illinois Secretary of State. Below are some pictures from the event.






Pictured (Left): Drs. Patricia W. Finn and Gary H. Gibbons

Pictured (Right): Dr. Enrico Benedetti, Dr. Patricia W. Finn, Jesse White, and Dr. Robert Winn

August 2013

New Chief of Pulmonary, Critical Care, Sleep and Allergy

It is our pleasure to announce that Steven Dudek, MD, has accepted the position of chief of the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, Sleep, and Allergy. I am thrilled that he has accepted the position and look forward to working with him to advance the clinical, investigative, educational, and service missions of the division.

Dr. Dudek received his medical degree from Washington University in St. Louis and completed residency and pulmonary/critical care medicine fellowship at Johns Hopkins University. He was assistant professor of medicine at University of Chicago from 2005-2010, and came to UIC as associate professor in 2010. Since 2012 he has been co-director of the medical intensive care unit at UIHHSS. At UIC he has been named “Teaching Attending of the Year” by his division and is a two-time recipient of the Certificate of Teaching Excellence awarded by the UIC internal medicine residents.

A nationally and internationally recognized expert in acute lung injury, Dr. Dudek collaborates with many UIC investigators on projects related to pulmonary endothelial permeability and genetic markers for lung disease. Dr. Dudek is a member of the American Thoracic Society (ATS) and American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP). He is an active member of the ATS Pulmonary Circulation Assembly, serving as the editor of the assembly’s web-based journal club and member of the Program Planning Committee. Dr. Dudek has received Central Society for Clinical Research Physician Scientist Award, NIH Loan Repayment Grant, and was selected to attend the ACCP Faculty Leadership Development Program. He is a member of the editorial advisory board for Translation Research, Pulmonary Circulation, and American Journal of Physiology Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology.

Outside medicine, Dr. Dudek enjoys spending time with his wife and two teenage daughters. He is currently training to run in the 2013 Chicago Marathon. He is looking forward to crossing a marathon finish line for the 10th time!

Please join us in congratulating Dr. Dudek!


August 2013

New Hepatologists

The Department of Medicine welcomes our new Hepatologists to the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology. Charmaine Stewart, MD, FACP, joins the DOM team from the University of Minnesota. Dr. Stewart is appointed as Professor of Medicine and Associate Vice Head for Faculty Affairs in the Department of Medicine. Costica Aloman, MD, joins the DOM team from Mount Sinai University in New York City. Dr. Aloman is appointed Associate Professor of Medicine. They are both physician scientists and we look forward to them bringing their expertise to the Department of Medicine team.


May 2013

Department Head Installed As American Thoracic Society President


Patricia W. Finn, MD, professor and department Head, was recently installed as president of the American Thoracic Society (ATS) and will serve a one year term until May 2014. During her term as president she has called upon the ATS members to address questions of health equality at all levels of the organization. Dr. Finn has been active in the ATS since joining the organization in 1994, and has served as Head of the Assembly on Allergy, Immunology, and Inflammation and associate editor of the American Journal   of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine. Dr. Finn made a five year commitment to serve on the ATS Executive Committee, and will conclude her service in 2015.

Pictured:  Dr. Finn receiving the gavel from ATS immediate past president, Dr. Monica Kraft (left), on May 21, 2013 at the ATS International Conference in Philadelphia. This ceremony marked the first woman to woman gavel pass in ATS history.