Fast-moving and dynamic changes in the healthcare landscape require us to think creatively. An important strategy for ensuring continued growth and sustainability is the expansion of the high-quality care we offer into new areas and in new ways. To that end, Dr. Joel Kline, Professor of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Occupational Medicine, has accepted my offer to fill the newly created position of Vice Chair for Clinical Strategy for the Department of Internal Medicine. In this role, he will focus on increasing the scope of our department’s clinical services beyond our traditional venues. This will include assisting in the development and implementation of a departmental strategic plan for growth of our clinical operations; serving as liaison for clinical strategy and growth to the UIP, to clinical departments within in the Carver College of Medicine, and to referring physicians within our network; guiding the recruitment of new faculty for clinical expansion; and overseeing new clinical opportunities for the Department in Iowa City and the surrounding counties. As we increase our clinical footprint, Dr. Kline will also ensure that our standards for quality and safety and for clinical excellence are sustained within our growing network.
Dr. Kline takes the position with an extraordinary record of both providing excellence in his clinical care as well as designing and delivering transformative practice models. Dr. Kline came to the University of Iowa as a fellow in Pulmonary Disease and Critical Care Medicine after completing his residency and Chief Residency at UCSF-Fresno and receiving his medical degree at Brown University. Once at Iowa, he quickly established himself as a leader in clinical care practice and in research, directing a variety of units, including the Midwest Regional Pediatric Environmental Health Center and clinical research within the Institute of Clinical and Translational Science. He has also shown his commitment to education by directing the renowned Physician Scientist Training Pathway for the last 10 years. Most recently, he and three other providers established a new model of team-based care in their COPD Clinic, which has allowed for the scheduling of four times as many new patients from the previous year. I have every confidence that Dr. Kline’s flexibility and innovative thinking will make his efforts on our behalf a success. Please join me in congratulating Joel on his new role.