Residency Alumna Receives Prestigious School of Medicine Award, College faculty & Departments Honored with Argus Awards, and Publications

Residency Alumna Receives Prestigious School of Medicine Award

Dr. Beverly Jordan, an alumna of The University of Alabama Family Medicine Residency, which is operated by the College of Community Health Sciences, received the Martha Myers Role Model Award from the University of Alabama School of Medicine.

Jordan, who practices family and sports medicine in Enterprise, Alabama, was recognized for her contributions to medicine and patient care.

Jordan earned an undergraduate degree in Athletic Training from UA. She received her medical degree from the University of Alabama School of Medicine as part of the College’s Rural Medical Scholars Program. In addition to her residency training, Jordan also completed a sports medicine fellowship under the instruction of Drs. James Andrews and Larry Lemak at the American Sports Medicine Institute in Birmingham.

She joined Professional Medical Associates in Enterprise and also accepted Clinical Assistant Professorship status at the School of Medicine so that she could continue to work with medical students and residents. She serves as the team physician for Enterprise High School and on the Medical Center Enterprise board of directors.

Jordan has continued to serve in leadership roles in the medical profession. In 2009, she was elected president of the Alabama Academy of Family Physicians and currently serves on its board. She was elected vice speaker of the Medical Association of the State of Alabama in 2012 and went on to serve as speaker of the House of Delegates and College of Counselors until 2016. She served on Alabama’s delegation to the American Medical Association from 2013 until this year. She currently serves on the Alabama Joint Committee for Collaborative Practice and the Alabama State Committee of Public Health.

In 2014, Jordan received the University of Alabama School of Medicine Young Alumnus of the Year Award, and in 2015 received The University of Alabama Jack Davis Professional Achievement Award.

College faculty, departments honored with Argus Awards

Students from the University of Alabama School of Medicine have named faculty and clinical departments on the Tuscaloosa Regional Campus winners of the 2018 Argus Awards.

The College of Community Health Sciences, which operates The University of Alabama Family Medicine Residency and University Medical Center, also serves as the School of Medicine’s Tuscaloosa Regional Campus and provides clinical education for a portion of third- and fourth-year medical students.

Drs. Charles Gross, Catherine Ikard and Heather Taylor received best Clinical Educator Awards. Their respective departments – Surgery, Neurology and Pediatrics – received Best Clinical Department Awards.

The Argus Awards give medical student the chance to honor their mentors, professors, courses and course directors for outstanding service to medical education.


Dr. Anne Halli-Tierney, assistant professor of Family, Internal, and Rural Medicine for the College of Community Health Sciences and a practicing geriatrician at University Medical Center, published a book chapter, “Ethical issues in palliative and end-of-life care,” with co-authors Amy Albright, Deanna Dragan, Megal Lippe and Rebecca Allen in Palliative and End of Life Care: Disease, Social and Cultural Context, edited by Rebecca Allen, Brian Carpenter and Morgan Eichorst.

Dr. Pamela Payne-Foster, a professor of Community Medicine and Population Health for the College of Community Health Sciences, authored “Preparation and Planning for Future Care in the Deep South: Adapting a Validated Tool for Cultural Sensitivity, with Rebecca Allen, JoAnn Oliver, Morgan Eichorst, Lisa Mieskowski and Silvia Sorensen, to be published in The Gerontologist.


Optometry could play informative role in return-to-play decisions after concussions

Since eyes can provide a window into the brain’s functioning after exposure to sports-related impacts, optometry could play an important, supportive role in return-to-play decisions after concussions, according to Dr. Katherine Weise, professor of Pediatric/Binocular Vision at the UAB School of Optometry and eye doctor for the UAB football team.

Weise presented, “Concussion: The Hype, the Headlines, and the Hyperbole vs. the Evidence, A Team Eye Doctor’s Perspective,” August 24 as part of the Ernest Cole Brock III Continuing Medical Education Lecture Series hosted by the College of Community Health Sciences.

For decades, optometrists have reported that visual deficits often occur as the result of concussions, but they also believe the eyes can help inform health professionals about the brain’s functioning after an impact.

“The eyes are definitely affected in concussions. The eye is built from the brain and courses through the brain,” Weise said. “In addition to consequences to the visual system, the eyes may provide a window to the brain’s function following impact exposure.”

Under Alabama law, concussed athletes cannot return to play for at least 24 hours and only after being cleared by a physician. Optometrist currently can’t weigh in on those return-to-play decisions.

“We want to help doctors determine if it’s good for players to go back into the game,” Weise said. “We need to take a multi-disciplinary approach to assessing concussions.”

Weise, who is also co-director of BlazerVision, is on the sidelines during UAB football games, assessing the vision of players who have sustained impacts. She shares this information with team doctors, who make decisions about whether players can return to the game. Currently, Weise is conducting pre-season eye screening of UAB football players to establish vision baselines for the athletes.

Weise, whose father was a high school football coach and uncle an optometrist, received her undergraduate degree at Iowa State University in Ames and her Doctor of Optometry degree from the Illinois College of Optometry in Chicago. “I was a little girl who grew up on the sidelines,” she said.

She completed a family medicine residency with a pediatrics emphasis at the UAB School of Optometry in Birmingham and earned an MBA from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Weise has published and lectured extensively about the impact of sports and concussions on vision. She received funding several years ago to develop an Alabama-based, multi-institution research trial using the eye as a proxy to the brain in concussions. She was selected in 2014 and continues to serve as the vision representative for the Children’s of Alabama Concussion Summit Steering Committee.

The Ernest Cole Brock III Continuing Medical Education Lecture Series was created by the late Dr. Ernest Cole Brock Jr. and his wife, Hannah Brock. The lecture series focuses on treating athletic injuries. The late Ernest Brock was an orthopedic surgeon who practiced in Tuscaloosa for many years. He was also a longtime physician for The University of Alabama football team and served as a preceptor for the College of Community Health Sciences, training resident physicians and medical students.

First-year medical students honored at annual White Coat Ceremony

The University of Alabama School of Medicine on August 12 welcomed 186 students in the entering class of 2018 and presented them with their first white coats at the annual White Coat Ceremony.Rachel Rainey, Paris Malensek, Kara Kishler, Jane Hampton, Adriana Green

A portion of those students will complete their third- and fourth-years of medical school at the College of Community Health Sciences, which, in its role as a medical educator, also serves as the School of Medicine’s Tuscaloosa Regional Campus.

The presentation of white coats included the signing of the oath of commitment to patient care, reminding the incoming students of the dedication necessary to complete a medical education and of compassion necessary to practice medicine.

“Today marks a significant milestone in the journey toward becoming a physician,” Dr. Selwyn Vickers, senior vice president for medicine and dean of the School of Medicine, told the new

students. “It is the day when you achieve your first white coat, which symbolizes your entrance into the medical profession.”

This year’s incoming class represents students from 56 colleges and universities. The admissions committee review more than 4,630 applications to select the 186 individuals for the entering class of 2018.




CCHS’s TEACH Table at the Gordo High School versus Aliceville High School Football Game

The University of Alabama-Pickens County Partnership, led by UA’s College of Community Health Sciences, brought its TEACH Table to the Gordo High School versus Aliceville High School football game August 31. The TEACH Table is an outreach effort that seeks to engage with the community about various health topics, including nutrition, heart health, exercise and sleep. Informational handouts are provided and, if needed, community members can be referred to one of the primary care clinics in Pickens County or to the Pickens County Medical Center.

Rural Medical Scholars Orientation

Ten University of Alabama students studying to become physicians and planning to practice in rural Alabama attended an orientation session August 21 hosted by the College of Community Health Sciences.

The students are participating in the College’s Rural Medical Scholars Program, a five-year medical education program that leads to early admission to the University of Alabama School of Medicine and a medical degree.

The orientation at Moundville Archeological Park in Moundville, Alabama, included an overview of program expectations and faculty and staff introductions. Students also had a chance to meet more College faculty at a meet-and-greet later in the day.

The Rural Medical Scholars Program is for rural Alabama students who want to become physicians and practice in rural communities. The program includes a year of study, after students receive their undergraduate degree, and leads to a master’s degree in Rural Community Health and early admission to the University of Alabama School of Medicine.

The Rural Medical Scholars Program is part of the College’s efforts to address the shortage of primary care physicians in Alabama, particularly in rural areas.

Also attending the orientation were seven students who are Rural Community Health Scholars, graduate students not enrolled in the Rural Medical Scholars Program but who are interested in health-care careers. The Rural Community Health Scholars Program prepares students for leadership roles in community health in rural areas. Graduates of the program have entered the fields of public health, health administration, nursing and physical therapy.

Bertha Hidalgo

Preview: Scholarship Conference – Latinos and Cardiometabolic Disease

Dr. Bertha Hidalgo, an associate scientist at the UAB Nutrition Obesity Research Center and Faculty Scholar at the UAB Center for the Study of Community Health, will provide the September 25 Scholarship Conference lecture hosted by the College of Community Health Sciences.

Her lecture will focus on innovative research on Latinos and cardiometabolic diseases – obesity, cardiovascular disease and type-2 diabetes – and implications for medical practice.

The lecture by Hidalgo, who is also an assistant professor of Epidemiology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, comes during The University of Alabama’s Hispanic/Latino Heritage Month.

Hidalgo has degrees from Stanford University, the University of Southern California and UAB. Her research interests include cardiometabolic diseases, genetic epidemiology, health disparities and Latino Health.

She has received funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation New Connections Program to investigate whether genetic and epigenetic differences exist between subgroups of Latinos for cardiometabolic diseases. She recently became principal investigator of Epigenomics of Cardiometabolic Disease in Mexican Americans, a K01 award focused on better understanding of the genetic and environmental contributors to cardiometabolic diseases in a cohort of Mexican Americans.

Hidalgo is an active member of several epidemiology and public health professional societies, including chair of the Minority Affairs Committee for the American College of Epidemiology.