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Faculty Recognition

We greatly value our faculty's scholarly contributions and are proud to honor their accomplishments.

Faculty Highlights

Karin Johnson, MD

incontentkjohnson250x250Dr. Karin Johnson, Vice Chair for Academic Affairs of the Department of Neurology and Associate Professor of Neurology at University of Massachusetts Medical School-Baystate, co-authored an article in the November 2018 issue of Sleep Medicine that proposed a new cost-effective method of testing for sleep apnea.

“Flow Limitation/Obstruction With Recovery Breath (FLOW) Event For Improved Scoring of Mild Obstructive Sleep Apnea without Electroencephalography” explains its definition and the reliability of its scoring system.

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a very common disorder that can cause symptoms like snoring, disrupted sleep, and fatigue. It can put people at higher risk for other disorders like heart attacks or stroke. Due to recent changes in insurance, most patients only qualify for home sleep apnea testing (HSAT). This type of testing does not include testing of brain waves (electroencephalogram), which is a typical part of in-lab testing. Because of this, when traditional scoring methods are used, a HSAT is more likely to underestimate the severity of OSA and lead to the underdiagnoses of many patients, especially those with mild sleep apnea. This realization led to the creation of a new breathing event, FLOW, which does not require an electroencephalogram. FLOW will help make HSAT a more sensitive and cost-efficient testing process.

Since the publication of this paper, Dr. Johnson and her team have been working on demonstrating the clinical utility of FLOW and how it may be used to aid in the diagnosis and risk stratification of patients with mild OSA.

Citation: Karin Johnson MD, Douglas Clark Johnson MD, Robert Joseph Thomas MD, Edward Feldmann MD, Peter K. Lindenauer MD, MSc, Paul Visintainer PhD, Meir Kryger MD. Flow Limitation/Obstruction With Recovery Breath (FLOW) Event For Improved Scoring of Mild Obstructive Sleep Apnea without Electroencephalography. Sleep Medicine. 30 November 2018. (Read the abstract)

Mauran Brennan, MD

Dr. Maura BrennanDr. Maura Brennan, Division Chief for Geriatrics & Palliative Care
and Professor of Medicine at UMMS-Baystate, has been recently appointed as a member of the Advisory Council on Alzheimer’s Disease Research and Treatment for the State of Massachusetts.
This leadership role serves Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, and Secretary Marylou Sudders.

In the summer of 2018, the state legislature took a number of steps to enhance services and improve care for people with dementia, as well as to ease the struggle for their loved ones. This included
passing a bill to establish new training requirements in dementia for RNs, NPs, PAs, protective services caseworkers, and physicians.

Massachusetts is the first state in the nation to mandate this type of continuing education and support of dementia. Hospitals are now required to devise plans by October 2021 to identify and care for patients with dementia and delirium.

In correlation to these efforts, a 17-member Advisory Council to the Governor has been formed. It is comprised of state officials, patients and caregivers, researchers and clinicians, reviews state plans and needs and makes annual recommendations. It will meet quarterly and convene for the first time early in 2019.

Dr. Brennan is being sworn in the week of December 10, 2018 and will then begin to serve in this position.

 > Faculty Highlights Archive


Annual Weinberg Award for Academic Excellence

The Weinberg Family Award for Academic Excellence is awarded annually to an individual whose innovative research, publications, or leadership of a national academic organization have brought honor to Baystate Health.

 > Weinberg Award winners