SMHS and GW MFA Initiate a Strategic Planning Process

Plan to serve as a road map to reach institutional goals
February 16, 2021
George Washington on horseback statue

The George Washington University (GW) School of Medicine and Health Sciences (SMHS) is embarking on a strategic planning process, with the GW Medical Faculty Associates (GW MFA), that will guide the combined goals of SMHS and the GW MFA for the first several years of the post-pandemic academic medical enterprise. The planning initiative, which began in early November, will create a multi-year strategic plan to build on existing strengths of SMHS and the GW MFA and reinforce the link between the two institutions.

The rollout of a new strategic plan marks the most significant opportunity yet for Barbara Lee Bass, MD, RESD ’86, vice president for health affairs, to better position the university’s academic medical enterprise as one, combined organization — a concept that is reflected in her leadership role as the first person to serve as both dean of SMHS and CEO of the GW MFA.

Lawrence Deyton, MSPH, MD ’85, senior associate dean for clinical public health at SMHS and professor of medicine and public health, has been tapped to lead this effort over the next six months. He will guide a team, composed of representatives from both SMHS and the GW MFA, through the process of drafting, seeking input from stakeholders, collecting feedback, and incorporating that feedback into the plan.

The process will focus on key priorities, including:

  •     How SMHS and the GW MFA medical enterprise will become a leader in antiracism and inclusion.
  •     How the medical enterprise will more rapidly speed new discovery and translate knowledge into practical actions.
  •     How the medical enterprise will educate the current and future health care workforce for transformed care systems.
  •     How the medical enterprise will deliver the highest quality clinical care that relies on interprofessional teams and advanced virtual technologies.
  •     How the medical enterprise will create a healthy and supportive learning and work environments and promote everyone’s career development.
  •     How the medical enterprise will apply commitment, knowledge, and the assets of the institution to improve health in the Washington, D.C., community.

In addition to these key priorities, the strategic plan will also reflect on much of what has been learned over the last 10 months during the COVID-19 pandemic. The crisis has revealed the need for focused work to be done in the areas of racism, health disparities, and improved community health in the Washington, D.C., metro region. The goal is to position SMHS/MFA as a trailblazer in these areas to create best practices as we address these challenges.

To complete the new plan within the ambitious six-month timeline, a cascading series of discussion drafts and feedback sessions will take place over the next few months. The goal for this planning process is to involve everyone in the GW MFA and SMHS community in building a road map to achieve the collective goals of the institution.

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