At BWH’s annual Minority Faculty Career Development Award (MFCDA) Grand Rounds, hospitalist and social epidemiologist Cheryl Clark, MD, ScD, spoke about health inequalities faced by minority populations in the U.S. using the lens of aging.
Throughout the years, various departments have hosted the grand rounds featuring a speaker who is a past recipient of the award — this year, the Department of Medicine hosted. The MFCDA program, founded in 1996, provides financial support to early-career underrepresented minority physicians and scientists at BWH, with the goal of increasing their presence across the institution. The five-year $100,000 award is given to two underrepresented minority faculty members annually.
This year’s recipients, Liza Colimon, MD, of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Monik Jimenez, ScD, SM, of the Department of Medicine, were presented with their awards by Robert Handin, MD, of the Hematology Division.
Clark, who is a faculty member of the Division of General Medicine and Primary Care and the director of Health Equity Research and Intervention at BWH’s Center for Community Health and Health Equity, reviewed strategies for promoting equity in mid-life and elder groups. She also emphasized what individuals can do in a health care setting to address inequities.
Clark illustrated the ways BWH is making a difference through emerging interventions to address social inequities through social partnerships and strategic planning. She also highlighted BWH neurologist Jennifer Lyons, MD, who provides multidisciplinary, coordinated care to improve access for patients with neurologic infections. For example, Lyons gives enhanced phone access to patients to help manage urgent issues. Having access to this kind of communication with their doctors has saved many patients from making an unnecessary visit to the emergency room.
“It is an important part of all of our collective work to implement strategies that improve opportunities and reduce inequities for the diverse communities we serve,” Clark said.
The MFCDA awards are sponsored by the Center for Faculty Development & Diversity and funded by the President’s office and academic departments.