This spring, Neil R. Powe, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A., a clinical scholar at the University of Pennsylvania from 1984 to 1986, joined San Francisco General Hospital (SFGH) as chief of medical services, as well as taking on the role of Constance B. Wofsy Distinguished Professor and vice chair of medicine at the University of California San Francisco. He will guide the research, education and patient care activities of 120 full-time faculty and 500 staff at SFGH. Dr. Powe joined SFGH after more than 20 years as an internist, epidemiologist and professor at Johns Hopkins University where he directed the Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology and Clinical Research.
“This is a natural sequel to my work and passion to produce scientists and educators who intersect medicine and public health,” says Dr. Powe. “As I look back at my experience and accomplishments, I’m most proud of developing people who will be our future leaders in medical science and medical education.”
Because of his own exposure to a network of role models and mentors through the Clinical Scholars program, Dr. Powe is committed to using mentorship to shape future leaders. He was co-director of the Johns Hopkins Clinical Scholars program from 1994 until 2004 where he not only mentored and advised scholars, but also helped design the program. After the Hopkins Clinical Scholars program site closed in 2004, Dr. Powe capitalized on the knowledge and skills he developed with the program to start a variety of programs focused on training and leadership development of young clinicians through the NIH Roadmap for Medical Research.
“One of the most valuable assets from the program has been my fellow scholars, mentors and advisors that I got to know and build relationships with,” says Dr. Powe. “This network has been like a family that helped me pursue the things that I am passionate about.”
An expert in chronic kidney disease, Powe led the Choices for Healthy Outcomes in Caring for End-Stage Renal Disease (CHOICE) study, which examined how different dialysis-care practices influence health outcomes and costs, and the End-Stage Renal Disease Quality (EQUAL) study that has generated evidence on how to improve health care for chronic kidney disease patients. These studies are models for comparative effectiveness clinical research.
“With these studies, I was able to put together multidisciplinary teams to look at solutions for chronic kidney disease,” says Dr. Powe. “The Clinical Scholars program was a very important initial exposure to multidisciplinary solutions to health problems linking science and health care delivery.”
In addition to receiving his medical degree from Harvard Medical School, Powe earned an M.P.H. from the Harvard School of Public Health and an M.B.A. from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.