Thursday, November 29, 2018

Dr. Glen Borchert Joins USA College of Medicine Faculty

Dr. Glen Borchert recently was appointed associate professor of pharmacology at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine. He has a secondary appointment as associate professor of biology at USA.

He earned his Ph.D. in genetics from the University of Iowa in Iowa City, Iowa. He completed postdoctoral research in structural biology at the University of California at Berkeley and postdoctoral research in immunology at Illinois State University in Normal, Ill.

Dr. Borchert has received research awards totaling more than $3.3 million. Currently, he is the primary investigator of the project "MicroRNAs: What are they targeting?", sponsored by the National Science Foundation's Division of Molecular and Cellular Biology. He is also the co-investigator of "DNA lesions and gene expression in hypoxic lung disease," sponsored by the National Institutes of Health/National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.   

He is a member of the RNA Society, the Alabama Academy of Science, the Genetics Society of America, and the American Physiological Society.

Mark Your Calendar: Pediatric Grand Rounds Dec. 21

Dr. Roger Berkow, professor and vice chair of pediatrics at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine and a pediatrician with USA Physicians Group, will present December's pediatric grand rounds.

His lecture, "Pediatric Oncology: A 30-Year Perspective," is set for 8 a.m. Friday, Dec. 21, in the conference room on the first floor of the Strada Patient Care Center.

Dr. Berkow will discuss the advancements in care and cure rates of childhood cancer over the past 30 years, the obstacles and next steps to continued improvement in care and cure rates, and the biology of cancer. 

Pediatrics grand rounds is every third Friday of the month. The event is open to USA faculty, staff and students. A light breakfast, coffee and beverages will be provided.

For more information, contact LaTasha Williams at or (251) 415-8688.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

USA Physicians Group to Recognize Outstanding Employees

USA Physicians Group is re-establishing the Employee of the Month program to honor employees who exhibit exceptional customer service, teamwork, and a willingness to go above and beyond their professional duties.

All USA Physicians Group employees, including full-time and part-time status, who have completed their six-month probationary period are eligible to be nominated for the award. Physicians and members of administration are not eligible for the award.

Monthly honorees will receive one paid administrative day of leave. The day of leave must be scheduled and approved in advance and will be based on their normal work schedule. For example, if the employee normally works an 8-hour shift, the administrative day of leave will be 8 hours.

Honorees will also be recognized in the Med School Watercooler blog and on USA Physicians Group social media outlets.

To nominate an employee, fill out the USA Physicians Group Employee of the Month Nomination Form.

USA Medical Students Take First Place in APPA Poster Contest

Second-year medical student Shyla Hossain
attended the conference and presented their poster.
Lauren Chastain and Shyla Hossain, students at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine, recently won first place in the poster contest at the Alabama Psychiatric Physicians Association (APPA) fall conference in Mobile.

Chastain, a fourth-year medical student, and Hossain, a second-year medical student, won for their project, "Overdose without the Dose: A Case Study of Patient Handoff in Psychiatry."

Dr. W. Bogan Brooks, associate professor of psychiatry at the USA College of Medicine and a psychiatrist with USA Health, served as principal investigator of the study. They also worked with Dr. Shanthi Gatla, a fellow in child and adolescent psychiatry at USA Health.

"Our project highlighted the importance of efficient communication between health care providers as patients transition between facilities throughout treatment stages," explained Hossain, who attended the conference and presented their poster. "We illustrated this through a patient case; the patient's chart revealed five different diagnoses and medications over the span of 11 months! With her in mind, we conducted a literature search on patient handoff procedures and were able to introduce several mnemonics to the APPA attendees."

Hossain said many of the conference attendees were acutely aware of the problem and had experience with similar cases. "Using a structured method of communication significantly improves patient outcomes and reduces hospital stays, and we sincerely hope some attendees were able take back our suggestions to their own practice," she said.

Hossain said she is proud to have taken part in such relevant research that could be applied to any field of medicine. "As an M2, research is not something that we have a lot of time for, and it is something you have to seek out for yourself. I enjoy doing research and sought out Dr. Brooks early in my M1 year," she said. "It is very rewarding to have achieved first-place with a wonderful team of mentors who strongly believe in providing opportunities to help students achieve beyond their goals."