View Recent News
With displays of traditional Native American dress and artifacts as reminders of their proud heritage, a group of bright, young students radiated optimism and excitement at the welcome dinner for the Native American Research Internship (NARI), held at the Natural History Museum of Utah. This year, the program is hosting
SALT LAKE CITY-Scientists at the University of Utah School of Medicine, ARUP Laboratories, and IDbyDNA, Inc., have developed ultra-fast, meta-genomics analysis software called Taxonomer that dramatically improves the accuracy and speed of pathogen detection. In a paper published today in Genome Biology, the collaborators demonstrated the ability of Taxonomer to
Other studies: Transgender voices, anger and fast-talking women
May 25, 2016 – Older Americans with some hearing loss shouldn’t feel alone if they have trouble understanding British TV sagas like “Downton Abbey.” A small study from University of Utah Health Sciences suggests hearing-impaired senior citizens have more trouble than young people
Adults with hypertension who are age 75 years and older, including those who are frail and with poor overall health, could benefit from lowering their blood pressure below current medical guidelines. The multi-institutional investigation was published online in The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) and presented at the
University of Utah Health Care becomes third national medical center to join the network
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The United States Olympic Committee today announced the addition of the University of Utah Health Care (UUHC) to the National Medical Network. UUHC will serve as a national medical center, specializing in orthopedic
(SALT LAKE CITY)—Babies whose moms get flu vaccinations while pregnant have a significantly reduced risk of acquiring influenza during their first six months of life, a new study shows, leading the authors to declare that the need for getting more pregnant women immunized is a public health priority.
In a study
(SALT LAKE CITY)–The devastating consequences of sexual trauma in the military reported by 25 percent of female and 1 percent of male veterans who served in the U.S. armed forces don't end with psychological and physical trauma, but are associated with a much higher risk for homelessness, a study led
(SALT LAKE CITY)—Today, BMJ Global Health, a new publication launched by the British Medical Journal, published a roadmap to expanding access to surgical care around the world, a major health issue for an estimated 5 billion people worldwide. The authors of the roadmap include University of Utah professor of surgery
View Health Care Transformation
Putting It All Out There: How Utah Health System Uses Online Patient Reviews (Gulp) to Get Better — And Why There’s No Need to Fear
When University of Utah Health Care CEO Vivian Lee, M.D., Ph.D., M.B.A., first introduced her plan to make unedited, patient-written physician reviews available online to the public, the idea made many providers squirm. “Why, some asked, would an organization parade its imperfections online? Won’t online reviews distract from the important, hard work of saving lives?” Lee remembered. Such fears were unfounded, Lee writes in a Harvard Business Review piece. In fact, since the launch of “five-star” care, UUHC has seen steady gains in quality metrics and a reduction in costs. Lee outlines how the transparency of reviews lead to better, safer, more cost-effective care, provide the health care system with meaningful information, build trust, and drive continuous improvement. So what’s there to be afraid of?
Read Full Article
A Conversation with Vivian Lee: How the UUHC Chief Became the Leader She is Today
From the daughter of immigrants who hadn’t mastered English to the CEO of a health care system, Vivian Lee, M.D., Ph.D., M.B.A., has developed her own unique, “consultative” leadership style along the way. “Everybody needs to have a chance to express their views, which is why it’s very important to have very diverse perspectives around the table,” Lee told Adam Bryant of The New York Times. “I like to internalize those different views, synthesize them, and then, flavored by my own perspectives, come up with a decision.” In an interview for The Times’ Corner Office, which features conversations about leadership and management, Lee discusses how her parents influenced her leadership style, how her leadership style has evolved, and how she hires. She also offered advice to new college grads: “Just live in the moment. Pour your heart into whatever it is you’re doing and get the most out of that experience.”
Read Full Article
What can other States Learn from Utah about Delivering Great Health Care?
Utah “holds a unique distinction” when it comes to health care, according to a special report by the New England Journal of Medicine. No other state spends less per capita on medical care and few boast healthier populations. The question is, why? Utah’s “clean-living people” and youthful demographics deserve some of the credit, writes journalist Elizabeth Gardner. But so does its high quality, efficient health care system. Even after controlling for Utah’s population, the state’s hospitals have good health outcomes and low costs. Read Full Article
Since 2012, Algorithms for Innovation has been asking questions and searching for solutions to some of the most impossible problems facing health care today. We believe there's an unprecedented opportunity to invent a new vision for health care, and academic medicine is poised to lead the way. Algorithms for Innovation is designed to spark conversations, highlight best practices, and foster collaboration to help transform the future.
If you’re lucky in your career, you occasionally have the opportunity to work with truly unique talent. The only problem with truly unique talent is that the more successful they are, the more the rest of the world wants a piece of them. Such is the case with our Hospitals and Clinics CEO, David Entwistle, who is leaving us May 27 to become the president and CEO of Stanford Health Care.
This week, in addition to 48 students who will earn their Ph.D.’s, 130 who will receive Masters’ degrees, and 31 undergraduates who will advance, a new class of 81 Utah medical students will become physicians.
When we created the University of Utah School of Medicine’s Department of Population Health Sciences, we knew we needed a chair that not only shared our vision for the future but had the energy and expertise to make it a reality.
View Research Roundup
Gene's Battle with Microbes Promotes Evolutionary Innovation in Humans
The lactoferrin gene arose in early mammals approximately 160 million years ago, and can still be found in the genomes of humans and other primates. New research shows that lactoferrin, whose original function was to transport nutrient metals such as iron, has undergone “rapid” evolution to develop another role – immune defense against microbes that cause potentially deadly diseases of meningitis, pneumonia and sepsis. University of Utah researchers believe changes in the lactoferrin gene show evidence of an ongoing battle that drives evolutionary innovation as microbes find new ways of infecting humans and lactoferrin evolves to repel the invaders. The study shows that natural selection has acted on lactoferrin over millions of years, suggesting that lactoferrin has played an important role in the evolutionary success of living primates. In fact, differences in the lactoferrin gene still exist in different human populations across the world today. The research also demonstrates how the emergence of a new immune function in a gene, such as the one in lactoferrin, can drastically alter evolutionary conflicts with microbes.
View article in PLOS Genetics, May 20, 2016
Research Lab Website
People with rotator cuff tears often experience other tendon or nerve problems as well, but it has been unclear whether those associated ailments are influenced by genetics or environment. New research shows strong evidence that those “global” tendinopathies in the shoulders, knees, hips and other areas appear to cluster among blood relatives and spouses of people with torn rotator cuffs, suggesting that both genetic and environmental factors are involved. In a study leveraging de-identified records from the Utah Population Database (UPDB), a storehouse of health and genealogical data on more than 2 million people, and University of Utah Health Care, researchers found that first-degree relatives – parents, siblings, daughters and sons – are almost twice as likely to get global tendon problems or compression neuropathy, a medical condition caused by direct pressure on a single nerve, than people without rotator cuff tears. Second-degree relatives – grandparents, aunts and uncles, nieces and nephews and half-siblings – also face a significantly higher relative risk for developing tendinopathies and compression neuropathies. Even third-degree relatives of people with rotator cuff tears – great-grandparents, great-grandchildren and first cousins – are at a significantly greater risk for getting compression neuropathies and tendinopathies in the hand and/or wrist. While the risk for tendinopathies and compression neuropathy among relatives indicates a genetic connection to rotator cuff tears, the risk for spouses of people with rotator cuff tears is even stronger, signaling that environmental factors also play a role. The records showed that spouses of those with torn rotator cuffs are almost four times more likely to develop global tendinopathies and compression neuropathies, according to the study. The researchers also found that people with rotator cuff tears have the greatest risk of all for getting those aches and pains – ranging from nine to 15 times higher for tendinopathies and compression neuropathies than people without the painful tears.
View article in Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine, April 12, 2016
Zebrafish Findings Offer Explanation for Variability in Signs of Sepsis
When bacteria or other microbes enter the bloodstream they can trigger the activation of numerous host defenses as part of a process known as inflammation. While inflammation can promote the clearance of the invading microbes, it can also cause collateral damage to the body’s own cells and tissues. In extreme cases, the inflammatory pathways used by the body may spiral out of control, resulting in a life-threatening condition known as sepsis that can lead to organ failure and rapid death. Sepsis kills well over 250,000 people each year in the United States and is the most expensive condition to treat in hospitalized patients. Patients with sepsis are especially difficult to manage because the signs and symptoms of the disease can vary greatly between individuals. In patients with sepsis, the infecting microbes are usually viewed as generic triggers of inflammation while the patients themselves are considered the primary variables that affect disease progression and severity. This viewpoint is challenged by new work published in the April issue of the journal mSphere by researchers in the Department of Pathology at the University of Utah School of Medicine. The study shows that variations in just a single bacterial protein known as flagellin can significantly alter levels of inflammation and the progression of sepsis. Much of this work used a novel zebrafish infection model that mimics many of the key aspects of sepsis seen in human patients. A better understanding of how different flagellin variants differentially affect host inflammatory responses may help researchers develop improved diagnostic and therapeutic tools for sepsis and related diseases. Use of the zebrafish sepsis model may also facilitate the discovery of new treatments that can restore balance to out-of-control inflammatory pathways.
View article in mSphere
Older People with Low Levels of Bicarbonate at Higher Risk for Dying Prematurely
Otherwise healthy older people with low levels of bicarbonate, a major element in the body that helps maintain proper pH balance, were at a 24 percent higher risk of dying prematurely than those in a study group whose bicarbonate levels were normal or even high. Researchers analyzed information on 2,287 healthy black and white adults 70-79 years old who were part of the Health, Aging, and Body Composition (Health ABC) study, which began in 1997. Survival data were evaluated through February 2014 and study participants were followed for an average of more than 10 years. The analysis showed that people with normal or high bicarbonate levels had a similar risk of dying during the follow-up period, but those with low levels faced a substantially higher risk of dying earlier. Bicarbonate helps maintain proper pH balance, which is important to keep cells and organs working properly. However, the overall pH levels of participants in the study appeared to have no association with early death among people who had low bicarbonate levels. The study findings suggest that physicians might want to take a closer look at the bicarbonate levels in older patients to identify those at risk for dying prematurely.
View article in Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, Jan. 14, 2016
In Utah, you can truly have it all. Salt Lake City and the surrounding areas offer newcomers diverse neighborhoods, great schools, arts and entertainment, and endless possibilities for sports and recreation. A strong economy and low cost of living make Utah a perfect choice to call home.
University of Utah Health Sciences is an economic engine unlike any other in Utah. With more than 14,000 faculty and staff it is one of the state's largest employers and contributes millions of dollars in net tax revenue to Utah every year. But University of Utah Health Sciences' impact goes beyond the balance sheet. Its bottom line includes the health and well being of Utah residents in every corner of the state and from all walks of life.
University of Utah Health Sciences is the only university health care system in the state of Utah and provides patient care for the people of Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, and much of Nevada. It is also the training ground for most of Utah's physicians, nurses, pharmacists, therapists, and other health care professionals.
Named as one of theTop 10 in QualityBy University Health System Consortium for six years in a row
Named the No. 1 hospital in Utah by U.S. News and World Report
Half our providers rank in the top 10%, and a quarter rank in the top 1% for patient satisfaction
Health Sciences Received$270 Million In GrantsDuring Fiscal Year 2015