Professional News

Ky Institute of Medicine Inducts Three from UK

LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 4, 2010) − The Kentucky Institute of Medicine (KIOM) recently elected six new members, three of whom have University of Kentucky connections.  Membership in the KIOM is based on distinguished professional achievement; demonstrated and continued interest with healthcare, prevention diagnosis, treatment of disease, health professions education, or research in these areas; skills and resources likely to contribute to the Institute's tasks of assessing current knowledge, conducting studies, and considering policy issues; and developing written reports reflecting conclusions about health policy issues; and willingness to participate in the institute.

The mission of the KIOM is to improve the health of the people of Kentucky by providing objective, evidence-based advice concerning health and health care to policy makers, professionals, leaders of society and the public. The mission of the Institute embraces the health of all of the people of Kentucky.

The institute accomplishes this mission by sponsoring research, collating and analyzing information, and developing a consensus among the members of the institute about issues relating to health and health care that are in the best interests of the public. The Institute will respond to requests from outside sources for analysis and advice when this will aid in forming a basis for health policy decisions.

The UK inductees are: 

Ellen Hahn, a professor in the UK College of Nursing and the UK College of Public Health. Hahn is a tireless advocate for healthier communities throughout the Commonwealth. She has systematically studied the negative health impacts for Kentuckians of smoking, second-hand smoke and radon and uses research findings to advocate for local policy change.

Dr. Donald R. Neel, a private practice pediatrician in Owensboro, Ky. He received his bachelor of science degree in pharmacy from the UK College of Pharmacy and medical degree from the UK College of Medicine. He has been active in the state of Kentucky serving on many committees and all aspects of improving healthcare for Kentucky. He was instrumental in revitalizing the UK Medical Alumni Association and by his own example he has espoused the mission of the UK College of Medicine to provide physicians for our state.

Jeffrey P. Okeson, chairman of the Department of Oral Health Services in the UK College of Dentistry. Okeson received his bachelor of science degree from Eastern Kentucky University and his doctor of dental medicine degree from the UK College of Dentistry. His pioneer work in the field of orofacial pain is internationally renowned. The founding of the UK College of Dentistry Orofacial Pain Center in 1977 and continued advancement of the unit has elevated the reputation of the College of Dentistry and improved the quality of life for hundreds of patients.

Other health professionals elected to the KIOM include Gregory J. Bausch, vice president for Regional Services at St. Claire Regional Medical Center, William T. Betzdo, senior associate dean for Osteopathic Medical Education and chairman of the Dept. of Family Medicine at the Pikeville College School of Medicine and Dr. Shawn Curtis Jones, an otolaryngologist and senior partner in Purchase ENT in Paducah.

Members were inducted at the KIOM annual meeting held at Spindletop Hall on April 29.