Dean’s Message

December 9, 2021

As we arrive at the holiday season and look back over 2021, there certainly were challenges.

The COVID-19 pandemic stretched on, often making 2021 feel like an addendum to 2020. At University Medical Center, we continued to learn about and respond to the virus and its variants, first delta and now omicron. We tested and vaccinated thousands of UMC patients, UA faculty, staff and students, and West Alabama residents. In late fall we began vaccinating our youngest patients, and we recently added boosters to our box of tools to fight the coronavirus.

It’s hard to predict what COVID-19 will bring in 2022, but our physicians, providers and staff continue to adapt and meet the challenges each and every day. I am continuously proud of and grateful for their endless hard work.

As we continued to navigate a worldwide pandemic this year, we also recorded achievements in our efforts to expand health care in West Alabama, and in our research and education endeavors.

We opened UMC locations in Fayette and Carrollton, Alabama, with a focus on providing primary care and pre-natal and obstetrics services to those communities. We plan to expand our services at UMC-Fayette in early 2022, and later in the year hope to open a UMC location in another rural West Alabama community.

We continue to integrate the UA Student Health Center & Pharmacy and Brewer-Porch Children’s Center into our clinical and care operations, and this fall we became the exclusive provider of hospitalist services at DCH Regional Medical Center in Tuscaloosa and Northport Medical Center through our Capstone Hospitalist Group. Physicians who practice with the group are specialists in hospital medicine and care for patients in the hospital from the time of admission through discharge.

Our research endeavors grew exponentially this year. A few notable achievements from our faculty in the College of Community Health Sciences, which operates UMC:

I also want to note that our Master of Science Degree in Population Health Sciences continues to attract more and more students. Through that program, we are preparing the next generation of public health professionals who will be prepared to protect community health in the future.

I want to thank you for your support of and trust in University Medical Center, and for allowing us to care for you. I wish you all a happy and healthy holiday season.