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Center for Medical Innovation Names Interim Co-Directors

Bernhard Fassl, MD, and Bryan McRae, MD, have been appointed interim co-directors of the Center for Medical Innovation (CMI) at University of Utah Health. Senior Vice President Michael Good, MD, announced their appointments for the role previously held by John Langell, MD.

"Innovation in health care is a prime focus on this campus," said Good, who also serves as CEO of U of U Health and Dean of the School of Medicine. "Dr. Fassl and Dr. McRae are both innovative thinkers with the passion and deep experience we need for leadership at CMI."

Fassl is Associate Professor of Pediatrics and serves as the CMI's Associate Dean for Global Health Innovation. He currently leads the Asthma Health Care Quality Improvement project for U of U Health and Intermountain Healthcare and is actively involved with several NIH-funded studies. Much of his international work concentrates on global health care and research with a focus on sustainable health care quality and service delivery. He currently manages global research programs in India, Nepal, and Kenya, which provide internships for U of U medical students, residents, and other learners.

McRae is Assistant Professor of Surgery and a specialist in Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery. He is one of the surgeons on the Hereditary Hemorrhagic Telangiectasia (HHT) team, a U of U Health referral center for specialized treatment of HHT. McRae participates in developing innovative new medical and surgical devices, including mentorship of multiple university bioDesign teams in the Department of Bioengineering's undergraduate program.

CMI is a collaboration among U of U Health, the David Eccles School of Business, College of Engineering, and the Center for Technology & Venture Commercialization. CMI combines formal education programs, faculty and student project development, and support and facilitation of high-impact device development and commercialization.

Langell, CMI's founding executive director, is moving to Rootstown, Ohio, to become President of Northeast Ohio Medical University. "We're grateful to John for his visionary leadership," said Gary Crocker, biotech industry leader and Chairman of the CMI Advisory Board. "John founded the CMI. Among his noted accomplishments was creation of the Bench to Bedside program." That annual competition, now in its tenth year, is a trans-disciplinary educational program that introduces students to medical technology innovation. It is a model for innovation programs at other universities.

"We welcome Dr. Fassl and Dr. McRae," Crocker said. "They will continue the success of our Center for Medical Innovation, bringing more national distinction to U of U Health."