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Family Medicine Resources: Monday Memo

             Monday Memo                

Current Memo September 18, 2017

Library Transitions


  • Best wishes to Len Levin, Assistant Professor and library liaison to the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, who will leave U Mass next week to assume the role of Associate Director of Collections and Knowledge Management at the Francis A. Countway Library, Harvard Medical School, Boston.  Len has worked closely with the Department for the past 14 years in many capacities including co-teaching in the third year clerkship Evidence-Based Medicine class, supporting resident learning through participation in chart rounds, teaching and presenting at a number of faculty retreats and serving as a point person to assist with literature searching and information retrieval.


  • As of October 1st, Education and Clinical Services librarian Leah Honor will assume the role of Departmental liaison.  Leah can be reached at or 508-856-2458.




  • Valerie Coppenrath and Tasmina Hydery were co-authors on a paper in the Annals of Pharmacotherapy entitled "Dapagliflozin/saxagliptin fixed dose tablets: a new sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 and dipeptidyl peptidase 4 combination for the treatment of type 2 diabetes." September 8th, 2017 OnlineFirst Valerie Coppenrath was also the first author on a paper entitled "Adaptation and validation of the Fresno Test of Competence in Evidence-Based Medicine in doctor of pharmacy candidates", published in the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education 2017;81(6) Article 106: 1-9. 




At last week’s American Academy of Family Physicians’ annual FMX meeting in San Antonio:


  • Frank Domino presented “Motivational Interviewing for Weight Loss,” and “Top Ten Updates in Evidence-Based Medicine.”

Of note:  Frank’s latter presentation was a plenary session with over 2000 conference attendees in both the main auditorium and in auxiliary meeting rooms.  We’ve been hearing reactions to his presentation from around the country, including comments about a standing ovation.  For example, Dr. Mel Pinn of Richmond, VA (UMass Worcester/Family Health Center resident 76-79) wrote to us that  “Dr. Frank Domino was outstanding at the FMX meeting in San Antonio.   Last Friday he stole the big stage and presented to the General Meeting of the Academy  . . .  Let everyone in the UMass family know that Ralph Waldo Emerson would be proud of him.”

  • Bob Baldor presented Parkinson’s Disease: Diagnosis and Treatment” and “TIA and Stroke:  Diagnosis and Treatment”
  • Leonard Finn presented “Mindful Engagement with our Work:  Skills to Address Burnout, Resilience and Wellbeing”  and  “Leading Group Visits for Obese Patients:  How to Listen, Plan, Implement and Use Billing Codes for Effective Intervention”
  • Stacy Potts, who serves as one of four national faculty for the AAFP-sponsored Chief Resident Leadership Development Program  (meeting concurrently with the AAFP program) facilitated a panel discussion devoted to leadership, and presented “Leading From the Inside Out” and Career Planning: History of my Future”


Chairs’ Corner


Women in Medicine Month:   September is Women in Medicine Month.   Thank you to all the women who have dedicated their time, wisdom, and talents to the field of medicine and to our Department. The AMA Women Physicians Section has assembled a set of resources and stories related to women in medicine, which can be found at


Leadership Changes  


Two of our larger practice sites are undergoing leadership transitions.  As we embark on a formal search for each position, I’m pleased to announce that two talented and experienced faculty have agreed to serve as Interim Medical Directors:


  • Mary Lindholm, MD is assuming responsibility as Interim Medical Director of our Family Medicine practice on the University campus in the Benedict Building.  Mary also serves as Director of our highly rated third year Clerkship, and has been active in our Teachers of Tomorrow faculty development programs.  In addition to providing Family Medicine (without OB) services and serving as a teaching site for medical students, the practice provides Student Health services at the University campus. 
    Dr. Joe DiFranza is retiring after serving for the past five years as Medical Director, capping his rich career as a researcher (and activist) focusing on access to tobacco and tobacco addiction.


  • Patricia (Trish) Seymour, MD is assuming responsibility as Interim Medical Director of our Family Medicine Hospitalist Service at the Memorial campus.  Trish has been serving as Education Director on the service. Our Hospitalist service, staffed by Family Physician faculty, cares for patients admitted from most of the Family Medicine practices across the community, provides training in inpatient adult medicine to our Worcester Family Medicine residents and serves as a major Subinternship site for fourth year students.   Dr. Beth Koester, who has ably served as Medical Director for the past four years, is moving on to a medical leadership role in the New Hampshire Dartmouth Family Medicine Residency.


  • We are starting a formal search process for each position.  Both searches will be chaired by Vice Chair Dennis Dimitri, MD, and coordinated by our physician recruiter, Carolyn Jacobs.  Anyone interested in more information about these leadership positions can contact them at or





Small Changes, Long Term Results

Any personal trainer, medical provider or other kind of coach/mentor has innumerable stories of the client/patient that decided to try to change all their bad habits at once, shortly after receiving newly found motivation to improve their life.  Although this strategy may work for some, the clear majority of those that try to implement this much disruption to their daily routine will fail. 


Lasting change must be taken slowly and methodically, with specified periods of evaluating progress as one sets their focus on the future goal.  This goal can be different than others’ and the path we take to it can be our own.  The more we are critical of where we are going or how we get there, the more barriers we put in our own way.


Using this method, all it takes is 5-10 minutes to sit down and quickly list out the things we want to change in our lives, in our careers or in ourselves; then prioritize them, picking the most important one.  With this priority in mind, all it takes is to implement one positive step to our goal and continue with the next positive step.  These steps may be small or large and we may have times where we are forced to back pedal, however, with our next step, we continue in the direction we have set out in.

In time, we will arrive at our goal.

Monday Memo

The Monday Memo is a weekly communication of announcements, activities and accomplishments from Dr. Dan Lasser, Chair of the U Mass Department of Family Medicine and Community Health.  To submit an item to appear in the Monday Memo, please send it via e-mail to Alan.Chuman or fax it to 774-443-8680.