Five Penn Faculty Members Elected to The National Academy of Medicine

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.



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National Study Reveals The Current Fitness Habits Of The American Gymgoer

BOSTON, Oct. 20, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association (IHRSA) released first-of-its kind data from a new national survey* of Americans with gym memberships that addresses their physical and mental state throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. The full results from the study, which was conducted in collaboration with leading international insights company Kelton Global, a Material Company, are published in “The COVID Era Fitness Consumer” IHRSA report and delve into how Americans feel about the pandemic overall, what effects it has had on their overall health and fitness, how the virus has shaped their personal wellness outlooks, their overall comfort levels returning to the gym and more.

As gyms closed due to COVID-19 in March, members were forced to change up their routines. While some got creative with at-home workouts, others struggled to find a comparable fitness solution. The study overwhelmingly found that gymgoers look forward to returning to their gym — and at least one aspect of physically being in their gym (95 percent), plus the routines and sense of community they associate with it — as they push to reach their personal fitness goals. In fact, when asked what they missed most, the only thing Americans miss more than going to the gym (59 percent) is visiting their loved ones (65 percent) – more so than going to concerts or games (55 percent), bars or restaurants (51 percent) or even seeing movies in theaters (46 percent).

Not only do gym members feel positively about returning to the gym — many feel ready and motivated to do so – they look forward to enjoying the physical and mental benefits of working out at their gym again, from building strength and their immune system to releasing mood-boosting endorphins. Notably, exactly half (50 percent) of gym members express dissatisfaction with at-home fitness efforts and changes

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Coronavirus Cases, Hospitalizations Are Increasing in Majority of States | National News

Public health experts are warning that the upcoming months could bring a difficult surge in the coronavirus as the majority of states are reporting increases in new infections.

The U.S. recorded roughly 58,000 new cases on Monday – the highest for a Monday in about three months. Monday numbers are typically one of the lowest of the week.

Data from Johns Hopkins University shows that over half of U.S. states are seeing increases in their new coronavirus cases. North Dakota, Wyoming, South Dakota and Wisconsin are some of the states seeing the largest jumps in cases.

Photos: Daily Life, Disrupted

TOPSHOT - A passenger in an outfit (R) poses for a picture as a security guard wearing a facemask as a preventive measure against the Covid-19 coronavirus stands nearby on a last century-style boat, featuring a theatrical drama set between the 1920s and 1930s in Wuhan, in Chinas central Hubei province on September 27, 2020. (Photo by Hector RETAMAL / AFP) (Photo by HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP via Getty Images)

More than 37,000 people are currently hospitalized for COVID-19, according to The COVID Tracking Project. An analysis from CNBC found that the weekly averages for hospitalizations across 37 states were growing 5% or more as of Sunday.

Some experts have warned that the U.S. has entered the third peak of its coronavirus outbreak. As the U.S. heads deeper into fall and winter, and cold weather pushes more people indoors, researchers believe the virus will spread more easily. The challenge could also be compounded by the flu season.

Officials in the U.S. report more than 8.2 million cases and over 220,000 deaths. California, Texas and Florida report the most infections of any states, followed by New York, Illinois and Georgia.

Deaths have not increased in the same way infections and hospitalizations have, though fatalities tend to lag behind the other two metrics.

While President Donald Trump has repeatedly said that the U.S. is “rounding the corner” on the coronavirus outbreak, leading infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci recently told “60 Minutes” that it is “impossible to say” where the outbreak stands.

“When you have a million deaths and over 30 million infections globally, you cannot say that we’re on the road to essentially getting out of this,” Fauci said.

The wide-ranging interview led to renewed criticism of Fauci from Trump, with the president calling him a “disaster.”

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Ireland to reimpose national lockdown amid surge in COVID-19 cases

Ireland’s government is set to impose a six-week lockdown on the entire country as COVID-19 cases continue to rise, according to The New York Times.

The country will become the first in Europe to reimpose a nationwide lockdown when it shuts down nonessential businesses on Wednesday night, according to the Times.

“While we have slowed the spread of the virus, this has not been enough and further action is required,” Micheal Martin, the taoiseach, or leader of the government, said in a national address on Monday night, the Times reported.

Irish residents will be urged to remain at home and restaurants will be relegated to takeout or delivery only, according to the Times.

The country will impose fines on people who travel more than 5 km from their homes during the lockdown, The Guardian reported.

While schools and child care providers will remain open under the new action, gatherings and visits to private homes will be prohibited, the Times reported.

“If we pull together over the last six weeks, we will have the opportunity to celebrate Christmas in a meaningful way,” Martin told the nation, according to the Times.

Ireland reported 1,031 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, according to The Guardian. The total number of cases there is 50,993, according to John Hopkins University’s count. 

President TrumpDonald John TrumpNearly 300 former national security officials sign Biden endorsement letter DC correspondent on the death of Michael Reinoehl: ‘The folks I know in law enforcement are extremely angry about it’ Late night hosts targeted Trump over Biden 97 percent of the time in September: study MORE has made public comments in the past about avoiding a future lockdown in the U.S. Though coronavirus cases have risen across the country, Trump said he would not be in favor of a lockdown.

“[Joe] Biden would terminate our recovery, delay the vaccine, prolong the pandemic and annihilate Florida’s economy with a draconian, unscientific lockdown,” Trump said at a Florida rally in October, seeking to frame the narrative around his Democratic opponent in the presidential election. 

Biden has not pledged to reimpose lockdowns if he becomes president, saying only that he’ll “listen to the scientists.”

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Nonprofit Partnership to End Addiction launches with national campaign featuring music by The Lumineers and podcast hosted by Elizabeth Vargas

Nonprofit Partnership to End Addiction launches with national campaign featuring music by The Lumineers and podcast hosted by Elizabeth Vargas

PR Newswire

NEW YORK, Oct. 20, 2020

NEW YORK, Oct. 20, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Partnership to End Addiction announced its launch today with a campaign emphasizing the importance of personal connection in addressing our nation’s addiction crisis. A 3D-animated series of advertisements features music by Grammy-nominated band The Lumineers. The nonprofit also released a podcast hosted by Emmy Award-winning journalist and bestselling author Elizabeth Vargas.

“Following the merger of two leading addiction nonprofits, we are now a combined organization helping family members embrace the critical role they play in ending addiction,” said Creighton Drury, Chief Executive Officer at Partnership to End Addiction. “When we foster strong connections with loved ones, we see better outcomes in prevention and treatment – and in strengthening families and communities as agents of change in transforming the way our nation addresses addiction.”

‘Start with Connection’ Campaign

Building on a history of iconic public service announcements, the Partnership is seeking to reach parents and caregivers through television, print, radio and digital media. The “Start with Connection” campaign will encourage empathy and understanding, while offering hope and resources to begin conversations. The song “Salt and the Sea” by The Lumineers is from III, a narrative album that explores the destructive impact of addiction in a family. Advertisements will be available in 60-, 30- and 15-second broadcast units and a short-film version for select online distribution.

Watch the short-film version here.

“The loneliness and isolation of the pandemic are exacerbating the addiction crisis at an alarming rate,” said Emily Moyer, Chief Marketing Officer at Partnership to End Addiction. “While everyone is talking about physical distancing and wearing masks, we are encouraging family members to begin closing emotional distance in the home.”

‘Heart of the Matter with Elizabeth Vargas’ Podcast

The new podcast features personal conversations about substance use and recovery. Notable early guests include former NBA player Chris Herren, journalist and bestselling author David Sheff, and former U.S. Representative Patrick J. Kennedy. “Heart of the Matter with Elizabeth Vargas” is available on iTunes, Spotify and other major platforms.

“So many of us struggling with addiction are suffering quietly, certain we are alone. We talk about it with hushed tones, fearful of what others may think,” said Vargas. “There is tremendous value in connecting with others and sharing our own stories. I hope our podcast inspires others to open up and seek that support from their friends and family.”

About Partnership to End Addiction
Partnership to End Addiction is a national nonprofit uniquely positioned to reach, engage and help families impacted by addiction. With decades of experience in research, direct service, communications and partnership-building, we provide families with personalized support and resources — while mobilizing policymakers, researchers and health care professionals to better address addiction systemically on a national scale. For more information, visit

About The Lumineers

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Five professors elected to National Academy of Medicine | News Center

Laurence Baker, PhD, professor of medicine and the Bing Professor of Human Biology, was elected for “contributions on consequences of rapid health care technology adoption, the importance of physician practice organization for costs and outcomes, the proliferation of out-of-network billing, and physician gender-based income disparities.”

Jeffrey Goldberg, MD, PhD, professor and chair of ophthalmology and the Blumenkranz Smead Professor, was elected “for his contribution to the understanding of the regeneration of retinal ganglion cells and axonal growth, and for being a driving force behind vision restoration clinical trials in glaucoma therapeutics and biomarker development.”

Steven Goodman, MD, PhD, MHS, associate dean for clinical and translational research and professor of medicine and of epidemiology and population health, was elected “for his expertise in scientific inference and research reproducibility, utilizing diverse methods to inform public decisions about medical interventions. His work has led to a long series of critical contributions to national deliberative bodies, including medical journals, funders, insurers, the courts, and the NAM,” an acronym for the National Academy of Medicine.

Fei-Fei Li, PhD, professor of computer science and co-director of the Stanford Institute of Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence, was elected “for helping establish the field of vision-based artificial intelligence, engendering diverse high-yield medical applications, including her current innovative focus on health-critical clinician and patient behavior recognition.”

Hannah Valantine, MBBS, DSc, professor of medicine, senior investigator at the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute and former chief officer of scientific workforce diversity at the National Institutes of Health, was elected “for her national leadership in both scientific workforce diversity and cardiac transplantation research. Her data-driven approach in these two important areas has led to game-changing policies and new programs that enriched the nation’s biomedical talent pool and have generated paradigm-shifting innovations in patient care.”

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John Dick elected to National Academy of Medicine

Dr. John Dick, a professor in the department of molecular genetics in the Temerty Faculty of Medicine and senior scientist at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, has been elected to the prestigious National Academy of Medicine (NAM).

The NAM is one of three academies that comprise the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine in the United States. Each year, the NAM elects up to 100 members, including 10 international members, recognized for their achievements in health and medicine.

A Canada Research Chair in Stem Cell Biology, Dick is globally recognized for his discovery of leukemia stem cells, made possible by an assay he developed. The assay involves transplanting cells from human adult bone marrow, normal or cancerous, into an experimental model to gauge cancer initiation. Using this approach, he revealed that only a­­ small subset of these cells was capable of initiating leukemia and was the main cause of disease relapse. These contributions have helped shape the understanding of cancer and reveal new strategies for curing the disease.

“The University of Toronto congratulates Professor John Dick on this richly deserved recognition,” said University Professor Ted Sargent, vice-president, research and innovation, and strategic initiatives. “He has revolutionized our understanding of leukemia.”

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Two Yale faculty elected to National Academy of Medicine

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. 

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Mount Sinai doctors elected to National Academy of Medicine for contributions to emergency medicine and translational genetics

Brendan G. Carr, MD, MA, MS, Chair of Emergency Medicine for the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and the Mount Sinai Health System, and Judy H. Cho, MD, Dean of Translational Genetics at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and Director of The Charles Bronfman Institute for Personalized Medicine, have been elected to the National Academy of Medicine (NAM). Election to the NAM is considered one of the highest honors in health and medicine, recognizing individuals who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service. With their election, Mount Sinai has 25 faculty members in the NAM.

“The recognitions of Dr. Carr and Dr. Cho are well deserved for their groundbreaking contributions to emergency medicine and translational genetics,” says Dennis S. Charney, MD, Anne and Joel Ehrenkranz Dean of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. “Dr. Carr’s research has focused not only on improving the emergency care system for time-sensitive conditions such as trauma, stroke, cardiac arrest, and sepsis, but also on creating a more distributed and innovative approach to increasing access to acute care. Likewise, Dr. Cho is committed to improving care through personalized medicine and the understanding of each patient’s unique genes. She has enhanced genetic research, clinical implementation, and data platforms to ensure Mount Sinai remains at the forefront of genetic discoveries and implementation.”

Emergency Medicine

A leading voice in emergency medicine, Dr. Carr played a central role in coordinating Mount Sinai’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. He has dedicated his career as an emergency medicine physician and health policy researcher to seamlessly combining research, policy, and practice to advance acute care delivery. Before joining Mount Sinai in February 2020, Dr. Carr held faculty positions at the Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University and the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.

Outside academia, Dr. Carr has worked within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services during both the current and previous administrations to improve trauma and emergency care services at the national level. His roles have included Senior Advisor and Director of the Emergency Care Coordination Center within the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, focusing on integrating the emergency care system into the broader health care delivery system. He previously supported the Indian Health Service’s initiatives to improve emergency care delivery, and worked with the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense to integrate military and civilian health care response during disasters and public health emergencies. Dr. Carr has advised and supported major not-for-profit foundations, the World Health Organization, and the National Academy of Medicine.

He conducts health services research that connects disciplines including epidemiology, health care policy, business, economics, and health care delivery system science. His work has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. He has published and lectured widely on systems of care for trauma, stroke, cardiac

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4 UCSF Faculty Elected to the National Academy of Medicine for 2020

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 portrait

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 smiling.

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

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