Dr. Leslie Beitsch, renowned in the field, is also the former deputy secretary of health at the Florida Department of Health, has held various positions at the department and sits on several committees.
Florida State University’s College of Medicine. (Photo: Hali Tauxe/Democrat)
A Florida State University dean reprimanded a high-ranking chair within the College of Medicine after an investigation into sexual misconduct complaints by the school’s Office of Equal Opportunity and Compliance.
In separate interviews with lead investigator Amber Wagner, an FSU human resources administrator, three women who worked at the college reported what they perceived to be unwelcome sexual advances from Dr. Leslie Beitsch, chair of Behavioral Sciences and Social Medicine at the College of Medicine.
Each woman alleged Beitsch touched their thighs while sitting down at various outings. According to the investigation, there was no “collusion” between the women.
The USA TODAY NETWORK–Florida, which recently learned of the year-old case, requested comment from Beitsch this week multiple times over the course of a week. He has not responded.
Beitsch, who has a medical degree from Georgetown University School of Medicine and a Harvard Law degree, has been with FSU since 2003. Renowned in the field, Beitsch is also the former deputy secretary of health at the Florida Department of Health, has held various positions at the department and sits on several committees. He is also the former commissioner of health for the State of Oklahoma.
“FSU conducted a full investigation into the allegations and took disciplinary action against the employee as a result,” FSU spokesman Dennis Schnittker wrote in a statement. “The employee was found responsible for a violation of university policy after a thorough and unbiased investigation by the Office of Equal Opportunity and Compliance.”
In an October 2019 written reprimand, College of Medicine Dean John Fogarty wrote the matter “should not be taken lightly,” directed him to a sexual misconduct training session and said a recurrence would result in further disciplinary action.
Schnittker said the investigation was not filed under Title IX, a part of federal law that prohibits sex discrimination and sexual misconduct against students, employees and visitors in educational institutions that receive federal funding, including FSU. The investigation, however, was performed by Wagner, who is also the university’s deputy Title IX coordinator, and the complaints pertain to sexual misconduct and harassment.
Her report, recently provided to the Democrat by a source close to the case, contains a letter of reprimand, transcripts of the interviews with the women, the dean and associate dean, and with Beitsch himself.
Beitsch says he ran his fingers through a woman’s ponytail
In July 2019, a woman who works in a department housed in the same office as Beitsch reported that he asked to meet her for a beer at a local pizzeria one evening after work. She agreed, thinking he was asking to meet to discuss a potential job vacancy or other work-related matter.
In her interview with investigators,
Past pandemics, roots of modern medicine focus of historical novel by Jacobs School professor emeritus – UB Now: News and views for UB faculty and staff
Hard as it may be to believe, there was a time in the not-so-distant past when the idea of living through a global pandemic was inconceivable to most of us.
The COVID-19 crisis changed all that. As medical experts and scientists scramble to find treatments and develop a vaccine, it leads us to wonder: How did doctors deal with a community health crisis in earlier times, without the medical advancements and technologies available to researchers in the 21st century?
A retired professor from the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at UB has written a book that addresses many of those questions.
In his history-based novel, “Bloodletting and Germs: A Doctor in Nineteenth Century Rural New York” (BookBaby), Thomas C. Rosenthal tells the story of Jabez Allen, a country doctor who worked in East Aurora during the 1800s.
The book describes the evolution of medical practices in the 19th century through the eyes of Allen, whose life and experiences Rosenthal painstakingly researched and recreated. It explains how Allen’s medical practice developed during a period of enormous social and scientific change that included the Civil War and the cholera epidemic of the mid-1800s.
Rosenthal knows something about the practice of rural medicine. A 1975 graduate of the Jacobs School, he chaired the Department of Family Medicine from 1994 until his retirement in 2013. During his tenure, Rosenthal was instrumental in establishing the Division of Rural Health, the medical school’s rural health campus in Cuba, N.Y., and its groundbreaking residency program in rural health.
Due to his efforts, UB was named a New York Rural Health Research Center in 1992, and in 1993 became one of only five universities in the country designated as a national rural health research center.
Rosenthal’s interest in rural health came from the eight years he worked as a family doctor in the small, Western New York farming community of Perry. He established the practice in 1978 after completing a family medicine residency at the former Deaconess Hospital in Buffalo. In 1986, he became medical director of Buffalo General Medical Center’s Department of Family Medicine. Rosenthal was named director of UB’s family medicine residency in 1987, and executive director of UB’s rural health programs in 1988.
Rosenthal first came across the story of Jabez Allen on a visit to the East Aurora Historical Society, where he discovered an intriguing artifact: a handwritten copy of a medical school diploma belonging to Allen, alongside the official document.
‘Why would a doctor need to make a copy of his diploma?’ he wondered. As it turns out, Allen was reluctant to send out his diploma to the Erie County Medical Board for fear of losing it. Instead, he sent them his copy.
“Allen practiced in East Aurora from 1834 to 1884, making him the perfect protagonist for a book on 19th-century family medicine,” Rosenthal says.
“The century is often referred to as a period of medical enlightenment,” he explains. “In retirement, I indulged myself in the question, ‘Why did it
US President Donald Trump (L) listens to White House coronavirus adviser Dr. Scott Atlas speak during a press conference in the Brady Briefing Room of the White House on September 23, 2020, in Washington, DC. MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images
This article originally appeared here on Salon.com
Scott Atlas, one of President Trump’s special coronavirus advisers and a faculty member at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution in Palo Alto, Calif., is causing a minor fracas among students and faculty at the elite university. Specifically, Atlas’ recommendations on coronavirus public health measures fly in the face of scientific consensus, faculty says — a charge that Atlas denies, and which he has threatened litigation over.
During a Faculty Senate meeting at Stanford University late last month, the college’s president and provost were asked whether Dr. Scott Atlas should face university sanctions for positions he has taken about the novel coronavirus pandemic that go against the scientific consensus. (As the faculty noted, Atlas is a neuroradiologist, not an epidemiologist or a scholar of infectious disease.) At the meeting, similar questions were raised about the university’s relationship with the Hoover Institution, where Atlas is a senior fellow. The Hoover Institution is a conservative think tank located on Stanford’s campus that has supported a laundry list of prominent right-wing statesmen over the years, from Condoleezza Rice to Reagan Secretary of State George Shultz.
Unsurprisingly given the politics of his employer, Atlas’ public statements tend to delight conservatives and alarm scientists who study public health and infectious diseases. Atlas recently tweeted that masks do not work to prevent infection (an unsupported claim, and one which Twitter wound up taking down for being misleading); previously, he claimed publicly that the threat of the coronavirus is greatly exaggerated. Atlas also claimed that summer civil rights protests were to blame for coronavirus outbreaks, as well as proximity to the U.S.-Mexico border, two more claims for which there is no evidence.
Despite being described by Trump as “one of the great experts of the world,” Atlas is reported to not have expertise in infectious disease mitigation or public health. Most recently, Atlas raised eyebrows last week for appearing on Russian state broadcaster RT, which is registered with the Justice Department as an agent of the Russian government.
David Spiegel, a medicine professor and associate chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, claimed during the late October meeting (which occurred before the RT interview) that Atlas is the “latest member of the Hoover Institution to disseminate incorrect and unscientific information about the coronavirus pandemic,” according to Stanford News. He also accused Atlas of violating the American Medical Association’s Code of Ethics and claimed that he may have additionally violated Stanford’s Code of Conduct.
University President Marc Tessier-Lavigne responded by citing the college’s Statement on Academic Freedom, although the provost acknowledged the validity of engineering professor Stephen Monismith’s concern about a New York Times report that some of Trump’s senior economic advisers had
October 20, 2020 |
Five faculty members from The University of Pennsylvania have been elected to the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) — one of the nation’s highest honors in the fields of health and medicine.
Dr. William Beltran of the school of veterinary medicine; Dr. Matthew McHugh of the school of nursing, and Drs. Ronald DeMatteo, Raina Merchant, and Hongjun Song of the Perelman School of Medicine are among the 100 new members, who have made major contributions to the advancement of the medical sciences, health care, and public health.
MSU’s Andrea Amalfitano, dean of MSU’s College of Osteopathic Medicine and and Heritage Foundation Endowed Professor of Pediatrics, Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, wrote this piece for The Conversation, an independent collaboration between editors and academics that provides informed news analysis and commentary to the general public. See the entire list of articles written by MSU faculty for the conversation.
Andrea Amalfitano is a doctor of osteopathic medicine, or D.O., and dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine. He explains some of the foundations of the profession and its guiding principle: to use holistic approaches to care for and guide patients. And don’t worry, yes, D.O.s are “real doctors” and have full practice rights across the U.S.
When President Trump was diagnosed with COVID-19, many Americans noticed that his physician had the title D.O. stitched onto his white coat. Much confusion ensued about doctors of osteopathic medicine. As of a 2018 census, they made up 9.1% of physicians in the United States. How do they fit into the broader medical field?
How did osteopathic medicine get started?
In the years after the Civil War, without antibiotics and vaccines, many clinicians of the day relied on techniques like arsenic, castor oil, mercury and bloodletting to treat the ill. Unsanitary surgical practices were standard. These “treatments” promised cures but often led to more sickness and pain.
In response to that dreadful state of affairs, a group of American physicians founded the osteopathic medical profession. They asserted that maintaining wellness and preventing disease was paramount. They believed that preserving health was best achieved via a holistic medical understanding of the individual patients, their families and their communities in mind, body and spirit. They rejected reductionist interactions meant to rapidly address only acute symptoms or problems.
They also embraced the concept that the human body has an inherent capacity to heal itself — decades before the immune system’s complexities were understood — and called for this ability to be respected and harnessed.
What do osteopathic doctors do today?
Doctors of osteopathic medicine — D.O.s, for short – can prescribe medication and practice all medical and surgical specialties just as their M.D. counterparts do. Because of the focus on preserving wellness rather than waiting to treat symptoms as they arise, more than half of D.O.s gravitate to primary care, including family practice and pediatrics, particularly in rural and underserved areas.
Andrea Amalfitano, dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine and Osteopathic Heritage Foundation Endowed Professor of Pediatrics, Microbiology and Molecular Genetics.
D.O. training embraces the logic that understanding anatomic structures can allow one to better understand how they function. For example, alongside contemporary medical and surgical preventive and treatment knowledge, all osteopathic physicians also learn strategies to treat musculoskeletal pain and disease. These techniques are known as “manual medicine,” or osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT). They can provide patients an alternative to medications, including opioids, or invasive surgical interventions.
D.O.s pride themselves on making sure their patients feel they’re treated as a whole person
Yale’s Michelle Bell and Daniel Colón-Ramos were among 100 new members elected to the National Academy of Medicine, the academy announced Oct. 19.
Bell, the Mary E. Pinchot Professor of Environmental Health at the Yale School of the Environment (YSE), was elected for her research which focuses on how human health is affected by environmental conditions, including air pollution, weather, and climate change. She also examines environmental justice.
In recognition of her work, Bell has received the Prince Albert II de Monaco/Institut Pasteur Award, the Rosenblith New Investigator Award, and the NIH Outstanding New Environmental Scientist (ONES) Award.
Colón-Ramos, the McConnell Duberg Professor of Neuroscience and Cell Biology in the department of neuroscience, was recognized “for making fundamental discoveries regarding the cell biology of the synapse,’’ the academy wrote. His lab focuses on how neuronal synapses are formed and maintained to control behavior and store memories.
Colón-Ramos was a recipient of the 2018 National Institutes of Health Pioneer Award, the 2018 Landis Award for Outstanding Mentorship from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, the American Association for the Advancement of Science Early Career Award, and the Sloan Research Fellowship.
Established originally as the Institute of Medicine in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences, the U.S. National Academy of Medicine addresses critical issues in health, science, medicine, and related policy and inspires positive actions across sectors. NAM works alongside the National Academy of Sciences and National Academy of Engineering to provide independent, objective analysis and advice to the nation and conduct other activities to solve complex problems and inform public policy decisions.
Five faculty members from Penn have been elected to the National Academy of Medicine (NAM), one of the nation’s highest honors in the fields of health and medicine. William Beltran of the School of Veterinary Medicine, Matthew McHugh of the School of Nursing, and Ronald DeMatteo, Raina Merchant, and Hongjun Song of the Perelman School of Medicine are among the 100 new members, elected by current NAM members.
Election recognizes individuals who have made major contributions to the advancement of the medical sciences, health care, and public health.
William Beltran is professor of ophthalmology in the Department of Clinical Sciences and Advanced Medicine and director of the Division of Experimental Retinal Therapies at Penn Vet. His research focuses on inherited retinal degeneration, a major cause of blindness in dogs and humans worldwide. Specifically, he has investigated the signaling pathways affected by X-linked retinitis pigmentosa and autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa, two of the most common forms of inherited retinal degeneration in humans. Working in canines, who suffer from forms of retinal degeneration that closely mimic the human diseases, he has helped develop effective gene therapies with promising results for treating both early- and late-stage disease.
Ronald Paul DeMatteo is the John Rhea Barton Professor and chair in the Perelman School of Medicine’s Department of Surgery. DeMatteo served as principal investigator on three national trials for the adjuvant drug imatinib for gastrointestinal stromal tumor, the most common human sarcoma. His work led to imatinib’s approval for adjuvant use by the FDA and established the standard-of-care for GIST, combining surgery and imatinib. DeMatteo is also being recognized for his work to define the immune response to GIST and its modulation by targeted therapy.
Matthew McHugh is the Independence Chair for Nursing Education and professor of nursing at Penn Nursing, associate director of the Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research (CHOPR), and senior fellow of the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics. As principal investigator on multiple large-scale studies funded by the National Institutes of Health, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, McHugh’s work has advanced the field of nursing outcomes and policy research by showing the value of investing in nursing to achieve a higher functioning health care system. In addition to findings from direct evaluations of nurse staffing ratio laws, research from McHugh and colleagues from the CHOPR at Penn Nursing has informed legislation proposed in multiple states and countries on safe nurse-staffing levels.
Raina Merchant is associate vice president and director of the Center for Digital Health in Penn Medicine and associate professor of emergency medicine in the Perelman School of Medicine. Merchant’s work has sought to gain insights through digital media about important health trends, and she is recognized for developing, deploying, evaluating, and refining novel tools and techniques to promote individual and population health. Some of her projects in this arena include tracking both physical and mental health symptoms via Twitter during the COVID-19 pandemic, determining keywords and phrases that could be used
Four UC San Francisco faculty members are among the 100 new national and international members elected this year to the National Academy of Medicine (NAM), one of the highest honors in the fields of health of medicine.
Membership in the NAM recognizes individuals who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievements and commitment to service in the medical sciences, health care and public health.
“This distinguished and diverse class of new members is a truly exceptional group of scholars and leaders whose expertise in science, medicine, health, and policy will be integral to helping the NAM address today’s most pressing health challenges and inform the future of health and health care for the benefit of everyone around the globe,” National Academy of Medicine President Victor J. Dzau said in a press release. “It is my privilege to welcome these esteemed individuals to the National Academy of Medicine.”
This year, this distinguished group welcomes four UCSF faculty:
- Mark Anderson, MD, PhD, professor of medicine and Robert B. Friend and Michelle M. Friend Endowed Chair in Diabetes Research
- Edward Chang, MD, Jeanne Robertson Distinguished Professor and Joan and Sandy Weill Chair of the Department of Neurological Surgery
- Aleksandar Rajkovic, MD, PhD, Stuart Lindsay Distinguished Professor in Experimental Pathology and Chief Genomics Officer of UCSF Health
- Robert Wachter, MD, Holly Smith Distinguished Professor in Science and Medicine, Benioff Endowed Chair in Hospital Medicine, and chair of the Department of Medicine
Mark Anderson, MD, PhD
Anderson is a physician-scientist who cares for patients with autoimmune endocrine diseases such as type 1 diabetes. This focus extends into the lab, where his research examines the genetic control of autoimmune diseases to better understand the mechanisms by which immune tolerance is broken.
In particular, his lab is interested in how the thymus trains the immune system to distinguish proteins made by the body itself from proteins made by invasive pathogens. For example, they have shown that some thymus cells produce “self” proteins and others even differentiate into skin or gut cells to test newborn T cells for autoimmune tendencies. Understanding these mechanisms could one day lead to medical interventions that suppress or enhance immune activity.
Anderson is a member of the UCSF Diabetes Center and the UCSF Bakar ImmunoX Initiative, director of the UCSF Medical Scientist Training Program, and current president of the Federation of Clinical Immunology.
Edward Chang, MD
Chang is a neurosurgeon-scientist and chair of the Department of Neurological Surgery. He specializes in advanced brain mapping methods to preserve crucial areas for language and cognitive functions in the brain. Chang is a member of the UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences and co-director of the Center for Neural Engineering and Prostheses, a collaboration between UCSF and UC Berkeley.
Chang’s research focuses on the brain mechanisms for human behaviors such as speech and mood. For example, by studying the brain activity associated with the physical movements of speaking, his team was able to teach a computer to decode and transform these brain signals into synthetic speech. This technology has
Nine HMS faculty members are among 100 new members elected by the National Academy of Medicine. Considered one of the highest honors among scientists, engineers and health professionals, NAM membership recognizes individuals who have demonstrated commitment to service and outstanding professional achievement in the advancement of science, medicine, technology and health.
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Below are the new NAM regular members and their election citations:
Dan Barouch, the HMS William Bosworth Castle Professor of Medicine and director of the Center for Virology and Vaccine Research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.
For being an international leader in virology and immunology and developing novel vaccines and cure strategies for viruses of global importance, including working on one of the first COVID-19 vaccine candidates, the first Zika virus vaccine and the first global mosaic HIV-1 vaccine, as well as defining immunotherapeutic HIV-1 cure strategies.
Myles Brown, the HMS Emil Frei III Professor of Medicine and director of the Center for Functional Cancer Epigenetics at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
For his leadership in oncology and endocrinology, whose seminal contributions have fundamentally reformulated the mechanistic understanding of hormone dependence of breast and prostate cancers, enabling the development of new therapies for these diseases.
Yolonda Lorig Colson, the HMS Hermes C. Grillo Professor of Surgery in the Field of Thoracic Surgery and chief of the Division of Thoracic Surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital.
For contributions to the fields of thoracic surgery, polymer-mediated chemotherapy release and lymphatic drug delivery and for leading a national paradigm shift to improve maintenance of certification for surgeons.
Merit Cudkowicz, the HMS Julieanne Dorn Professor of Neurology and chief of Department of Neurology and director of the Sean M. Healey and AMG Center for ALS at Mass General.
For leading the first neuroscience antisense oligonucleotide therapy trial; establishing the first platform trial in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; helping to develop a successful treatment for sporadic ALS, AMX0035; and creating global networks to accelerate treatment development for many disorders.
David E. Fisher, the HMS Edward Wigglesworth Professor of Dermatology and chief of the Department of Dermatology at Mass General.
For elucidating the ultraviolet pigmentation pathway, UV-seeking endorphin response, skin cancer prevention strategies, and hair graying mechanism; discovering melanoma and sarcoma oncogenes; and developing a routinely used melanoma diagnostic.
Joel Hirschhorn, the HMS Concordia Professor of Pediatrics and professor of genetics and chief of the Division of Endocrinology at Boston Children’s Hospital and member of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard.
For his development of methods and standards for performing and interpreting genome-wide association studies. He leads the Genetic Investigation of ANthropometric Traits (GIANT) consortium, which identified most currently known loci associated with stature and obesity.
Aaron Kesselheim, HMS professor of medicine and faculty member of the Division of Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmacoeconomics in the Department of Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
For his national leadership in studying how prescription drugs and medical devices interact with regulatory practices and the law to affect patient health