Kirk Kerkorian School of Medicine and UMC Continue Partnership To Improve Healthcare In Southern Nevada
Kirk Kerkorian School of Medicine and UMC Continue Partnership To Improve Healthcare In Southern Nevada

Mason Van Houweling, CEO of University Medical Center (UMC) and Marc Kahn, MD, dean, UNLV’s Kirk Kerkorian School of Medicine share a common goal – the improvement of healthcare in Southern Nevada. And it’s not hyperbole to say that a continued alliance between these two institutions is transformational.

As leaders in this strategic relationship, Van Houweling and Kahn view the medical school/hospital partnership as mutually beneficial. So intertwined are the medical school and UMC that it is impossible on any given day to not see School of Medicine faculty physicians, fellows, residents, and students either working cases at the hospital or in the midst of training.

UMC benefits from having medical school faculty physicians practicing and teaching in 17 specialty programs that range from surgical critical care to pediatrics. Medical school students, residents and those in fellowship programs, benefit from learning at a hospital that affords specialty programs clinical homes and provides the most advanced surgical technology in Nevada.

In addition to a Level 1 trauma center – the state’s highest rated trauma center, UMC is also home to Nevada’s only center for transplantation, verified burn care center, designated pediatric trauma center, and pediatric robotic surgery program – all of which support patients and UNLV medical teams.

Nowhere has this partnership been more high profile than in the institutions’ joint efforts in dealing with the pandemic. “It’s been all hands on deck. Without residents going the extra mile, we couldn’t have handled it,” “said Van Houweling.

Van Houweling and Dr. Kahn also are working on an initiative that will strengthen services for patients at UMC who are dealing with neurological, vascular, stroke, oncological, and mental health issues. In addition, UNLV is launching Nevada’s first academic health center that, with UMC as its primary teaching hospital, will bring together the university’s five healthcare professional schools in nursing, integrated health, community health sciences, dentistry, and allopathic medicine to advance the region’s health care.

The relationship between a county safety-net hospital and a public medical school is indeed sacrosanct in the combined mission to care for our community.

Photo: Courtesy of Kirk Kerkorian School of Medicine at UNLV; Dr. Marc Kahn, MD, and UMC CEO Mason Van Houweling

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