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Research

UTMB Internal Medicine research banner - woman working on a mircoscope

Welcome to the Department of Internal Medicine Research

Kristin Sokol MD (Assistant Professor, Division of Allergy) recently presented her work at a high profile, invited symposium for promising young academic physician-scientists.

The project, entitled "Choosing Wisely: Adherence by Physicians to Recommended Use of Spirometry in the Diagnosis and Management of Adult Asthma", was awarded a tie for first place in the clinical research section of the Tenth Annual Respiratory Disease Young Investigator's Forum in Washington DC.

Congratulations to Dr Sokol on this prestigious award.


William J Calhoun MD
Vice Chair for Research
william.calhoun@utmb.edu

The Department of Internal Medicine is actively involved in a variety of research efforts, from human clinical trials using innovative medications, to basic bench research directed towards discovering fundamental mechanisms of chronic disease. An important effort of Internal Medicine faculty is translational research, the application of cutting-edge science to clinical problems and their solutions (link to ITS website here).

In FY 2010, we had 94 awards, totaling about $25 million, about half of which was federal support. We increased research awards, and research expenditures, from FY 2009.

The Department supports a MultiDisciplinary Clinical Trials Office [CTO] jointly with the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences [OVS], directed by Dr Calhoun, and Managed by Lisa Nemeth Sweeny RN. It is staffed with clinical research nurses and clinical coordinators, has equipment and furnishings for patient interventions common in clinical trials, and occupies space on the third floor of the OVS building at 700 University Avenue. Stop by to see our facilties!

An important research initiative in our Department is the development of Interest Clusters. Our purpose for the Interest Clusters is to bring together clinicians, clinical scientists, and basic scientists who share interests in a disease or process, in order to facilitate new research opportunities. We currently have four such clusters:

Contact the Cluster Leader, or Dr Calhoun, if you would like more information, or to become involved. Our web page is under active development. Stop by frequently to see the latest updates.

The department of internal medicine is developing evidence based clinical protocols which will be available in EPIC (as order sets) for use when admitting patients with these diagnoses. Their AIM is to standardize care and decrease length of stay and readmission rates.

Currently available protocols are:
  • CAP - Community Acquired Pneumonia Orderset
  • Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Diabetic Ketoacidosis Adult, ICU
  • General Medicine Admission
  • Immunodeficiency Flow Panel
  • MICU/CCU Admission Order Set
  • Oral Analgesic Medicaitons
  • Parenteral Opioids
  • Sepsis, Adult ICU
  • 111 - Stroke Alert
  • 112 - Stroke Activation
  • 300086 - Stroke Floor Admission
  • 3000000001 -  Stroke Critical care without tPA
  • 300088 Stroke - Transfer from Critical care to floor
  • 3004002 - Stroke Discharge

All protocols can be found in the EPIC order set section.

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Meaning Use logo

The department of Internal Medicine has a large role in the Meaningful Use Initiative. Our participation is key for the success of the initiative. Please visit the meaningful use website for important communication and updates from the Meaningful Use Initiative.

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