A sampling of news media stories involving UC Health:
Opening of medical school at UC Riverside may be delayed, Los Angeles Times
The school, scheduled to open next year, was denied initial accreditation because of concerns about the state’s ability to provide funding. UC officials need a state commitment of about $10 million a year to secure accreditation.
Telehealth: ‘The doctor is in … another city’, HealthyCal
This story about telehealth efforts in California features several initiatives involving the University of California, including PRIME, the Specialty Care Safety Net Initiative and the California Telehealth Network.
Drugs show promise slowing advanced melanoma, The New York Times
Two new drugs have been found to prolong the lives of people with advanced melanoma, representing what researchers say is notable progress against the deadly skin cancer after decades of futility. The article quotes UCLA Dr. Antoni Ribas, who was an investigator in the trial for vemurafenib and has been a consultant to the developer of the drug.
Infection Files: Acknowledging champions of global health, Los Angeles Daily News
In this column, UCLA professor Claire Panosian Dunavan highlights UC’s contributions to global health, from students serving overseas to establishing a UC Global Health Institute.
Mending wounded warriors (video), MSNBC Jansing & Co.
This segment spotlights UCLA’s “Operation Mend,” which treats U.S. military personnel who have been severely injured in Iraq and Afghanistan. The program’s executive director, Dr. Timothy Miller, who is division chief of plastic surgery, and U.S. Marine Corporal Aaron Mankin, an Operation Mend patient, are interviewed.
UC San Francisco moving to electronic medical records, San Francisco Examiner
Switching from paper to electronic medical records is costing UC San Francisco Medical Center $150 million, but university officials say the change will improve efficiency and patient safety in the long run.
BJ Miller, pain doctor at the Zen Hospice Project, San Francisco Chronicle
Dr. BJ Miller is only 40 but he thinks about death a lot. He is the new executive director of the Zen Hospice Project in San Francisco and a palliative care specialist at UCSF Medical Center. He is also a triple amputee, co-founder of a tea company, owner of a farm in Utah and a newlywed who still looks like the Ivy Leaguer he once was.
Forget the pink ribbons, local doctors go bald for cancer, The Bay Citizen
Not to knock the breast cancer awareness ribbons but a group of eight doctors at UCSF’s Benioff Children’s Hospital took it a big step further, they shaved their heads to raise awareness and money for kids with cancer. On Wednesday night, Dr. Kate Matthay, chief of pediatric oncology at UCSF, was one of eight doctors from Benoiff Children’s Hospital who took part in a fundraiser put on by the St. Baldrick’s Foundation.
Austin Whitney graduated from UC Berkeley just last month, and he already has a full-time job. Whitney works as a human lab rat. The 22-year-old paraplegic, who captured headlines recently when he walked across the stage at his commencement wearing bionic legs, now spends long days with the engineers who developed the customized robotic suit.
Columnist Michael Hiltzik takes a critical look at the state agency that funds stem cell research. The column mentions that Stanford, a private university, has received more stem cell agency funding than UCLA and UC Berkeley combined. It also mentions budget cuts facing UC and the impact on the university.
UCSD-led team finds genetic key to blood stem cells, San Diego Union-Tribune
Researchers at UC San Diego and the University of Massachusetts believe they have discovered the genetic mechanism that controls the production of hematopoietic stem cells that continuously replenish all types of blood cells in the body, including red and white cells.
Sacramento joins study on environment’s impact on kids’ health, The Sacramento Bee
In this article about one of the largest and most comprehensive studies on how the environment is affecting U.S. children’s health, lead researcher Irva Hertz-Picciotto, chief of the UC Davis School of Medicine’s Division of Environmental and Occupational Health, says: “There s been a rapid increase in a number of conditions in childhood that we didn’t used to have — obesity, diabetes, autism, asthma. We are interested in the factors that could be in food, in the water, in our household products, in our neighborhoods that are affecting children.”
A clinical drug trial via phone, computer, The Wall Street Journal
Pfizer Inc. is conducting a drug trial in which patients participate from their homes using computers and smartphones rather than visiting a clinic. The company plans to compare the results to those obtained from a previous, traditional trial of the same drug. The study involves the company’s overactive-bladder drug Detrol. The study is also being overseen by a single group of doctors and nurses at the University of California, San Francisco, rather than at the numerous sites employed in most clinical trials.
UC engineering students take on project in Peru, San Francisco Chronicle
Engineering students at UC Berkeley are getting a jump start on their professional careers by helping to solve environmental problems in developing countries where the skills they’re learning in the classroom are in short supply. They will leave today on their first international project – to rid drinking water of arsenic in two mountain communities of southeast Peru. The naturally occurring arsenic in well water poses long-term risks of cancer and skin problems and, like all projects taken on by Engineers Without Borders, the request for help came directly from the communities.
In heart of Amazon, a natural lab to study diseases (audio), NPR Morning Edition
This story on mosquito research features Amy Morrison, field director for the UC Davis Mosquito Research Laboratory, who is conducting research in Iquitos, Peru. Morrison and her co-workers hope their work in the city will help them understand the spread of mosquito-borne disease anywhere in the world.
U.S. facing dramatic decline in number of emergency departments, according to study (audio), California Healthline
A study recently published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that about one-third of U.S. emergency departments closed during a 20-year period ending in 2009. According to UC San Francisco researchers who conducted the study, the ED closures predominately affected safety-net hospitals that see a large proportion of low-income patients. This special report includes comments from Renee Hsia, assistant professor of emergency medicine at UCSF.
Judge rules against Livermore Lab retirees on UC medical benefits, California Watch
A judge has ruled that the University of California does not have to provide university-sponsored medical benefits to retirees of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, whose health benefits were altered after the lab’s management changed in 2007.
Premature aging seen as issue for AIDS survivors, The Associated Press
In San Francisco, where already more than half of the 9,734 AIDS cases are in people 50 and over, University of California, San Francisco AIDS specialists are collaborating with geriatricians, pharmacists and nutritionists to develop treatment guidelines designed to help veterans of the disease cope with getting frail a decade or two ahead of schedule and to remain independent for as long as possible.
UCSD program offers free HIV tests in Hillcrest, San Diego Union-Tribune
San Diegans looking to get tested for HIV can now do it for free and get the results in just 10 minutes, thanks to a UCSD School of Medicine pilot program. And if residents of Hillcrest, South Park, University Heights and Mission Hills don’t want to visit the “Lead the Way” campaign’s new storefront center at the intersection of University Avenue and Park Boulevard, volunteers will come to them.
Essay: Treating the earliest cases of AIDS, PBS NewsHour
AIDS researcher Dr. Paul Volberding was one of the first doctors to study the disease in the early 1980s. He worked at San Francisco General Hospital, the first facility to dedicate a ward to the disease . He is now the vice chair of the department of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, and co-director of the university’s Center of AIDS Research. He reflects on the 30th anniversary.
See additional coverage: Los Angeles Daily News
Researchers have identified four new viruses that infect healthy honeybees, potential clues that may help them better understand why colonies are dying. The article quotes Joseph DeRisi, the paper’s senior study author and a professor of biochemistry and biophysics at UC San Francisco, and lead study co-author Michelle Flenniken, a postdoctoral scientist at UCSF.
UC San Diego hospital uses cloud for trauma-related file transfer, Campus Technology
A university hospital in Southern California has begun using cloud computing to receive imaging work from a remote hospital to expedite the treatment of trauma patients. The University of California, San Diego, Health System has adopted eMix, the Electronic Medical Information Exchange, to speed the diagnosis and treatment of patients sent to UC San Diego Medical Center-Hillcrest from El Centro Regional Medical Center, about 112 miles away.
Two nights, two honorees: Jane Fonda and Wallis Annenberg, Los Angeles Times
Before she could present Jane Fonda with a UCLA Longevity Center Icon Award, Jennifer Lopez had to pause midway in her recitation of Fonda’s lofty achievements — actress; fitness guru; author; and activist for environmental, human rights, health, women’s empowerment and other issues. “You’re busy like crazy,” Lopez said. “I thought I was busy.” Awards also went to philanthropist and entrepreneur James Collins and the Jules Stein Eye Institute’s founding director, Dr. Bradley Straatsma. Also in attendance were Dr. Gene Washington, dean of the David Geffen School of Medicine, center director Dr. Gary Small and actors Peter Fonda; George Segal; Iqbal Theba and Josh Sussman of “Glee”; and Joan Van Ark. Louise Horvitz and Timothy Noonan co-chaired the event, which raised funds for the center’s mission to enhance and extend productive and healthy lives. Kimberly Locke and the UCLA Gospel Choir performed.
‘Cowboys’ give breast cancer the boot at UCSF gala, San Francisco Chronicle
UCSF’s Give Breast Cancer the Boot event helped raise $265,000 in support of UCSF’s Breast Cancer Programs.
Lynn Ponton: First novel, ‘Metis,’ mines ancestry, San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco author Lynn Ponton knows that teenagers are prone to risky behavior. An adolescent psychiatrist and professor at UCSF, she has written two books on the subject: “The Romance of Risk: Why Teenagers Do the Things They Do” and “The Sex Lives of Teenagers: Revealing the Secret World of Adolescent Boys and Girls.” But when Ponton wrote her first novel, “Métis: Mixed Blood Stories,” she focused on adolescents in her own family, digging into her roots among the Métis – descendants of Cree and Assiniboine Indian women who married French and Scottish men in Canada, formed a hybrid French Catholic and Indian culture and later fled Canada and intermarried with people in Wisconsin.