Family Medicine's Strategic Plan

Message From the Chair

01/10/17  Portland, Ore.

By Jennifer DeVoe, M.D., D.Phil.

Imagine this:

  • Every person in Oregon has a top-notch patient-centered primary care home and receives the right care, in the right place, at the right time.
  • Every primary care team has resources to transform practice, integrate and coordinate care, conduct research, and partner with communities to improve population health.
  • Every primary care team is actively engaged in teaching and learning.
  • Every patient and caregiver has access to technologies that support patient engagement in healthcare, learning, and discovery.
  • Every primary care team and community has the data and partnerships with those who have expertise to make progress toward achieving the quadruple aim (better health care, improved population health, sustainable cost, and a healthy and happy healthcare workforce).
  • Every person, primary care clinic, and community in Oregon is connected with the OHSU Department of Family Medicine through our clinical care, education, and research efforts. 

Through our department's strategic planning process last year, we heard an overwhelming re-commitment to our three mission areas: clinical care, education, and research, and to continue our integration efforts between these mission areas.

It is critically important for OHSU to have world-class family health centers doing cutting edge research to discover how best to transform primary care and teaching the next generation. It is also critically important that we support our family medicine friends and colleagues across the state (and around the world!) to provide excellent primary care to communities and to serve as community laboratories and classrooms.Those of you who know me, know that I'm a big fan of the concept of 'community classrooms' and 'community laboratories.'(1) I am so proud that we are delivering care to communities while also educating future generations and making scientific discoveries. 

Motivated and informed by the passion, energy, and wisdom from the faculty, our leadership team has reconfirmed our vision and made the decision to restructure our department's leadership team for the future. The figure below shows our new organizational structure and our three new vice chairs.

Dept. Org Chart

Moving forward, Fran Biagioli, M.D. will lead as the Vice Chair of Education, Deborah Cohen, Ph.D. will be the Vice Chair of Research, and Bruin Rugge, M.D. will be the Vice Chair of Clinical. Together, these leaders will work together to strengthen their mission areas, and to strive toward seamless integration between the three.

As we look to the future, I like to remind myself of something John Saultz wrote in 2013 for Society of Teachers of Family Medicine: "Family medicine needs a larger vision than simply teaching family doctors. Our old mission was to train family physicians. Our new mission is to invent and study new models of primary care and teach learners from multiple disciplines to care for populations of people in community settings as teams. Patient-centered care is not about what physicians do;it is about how individuals and communities receive the care they need. We are fond of saying that family physicians should be leaders in the new health care system. This is the path to take if we are serious." Full article here. (2)

Our department is serious about taking this path, and we will continue to challenge ourselves with questions that help us grow and improve.

How do we…

…Continue to cultivate and strengthen community "laboratories" and "classrooms" to support learning and discovery?

…Build new community classrooms to facilitate collaborative learning and teaching?

…Build new community laboratories that support the "science of health," complementary to those supporting the "science of medicine"?

1.     Devoe, J. E., Likumahuwa-Ackman, S., Shannon, J., &Hayward, E. S. (2016). Creating 21st-Century Laboratories and Classrooms for Improving Population Health. Academic Medicine. doi:10.1097/acm.0000000000001385

2.     Saultz J. Interdisciplinary Family Medicine. Fam Med 2013;45(10):739-740.