Dear friends and colleagues,
It is with great pleasure and a profound sense of purpose and responsibility that I took the reins of our society as ASDIN President on February 24, 2014. I wish to extend my sincere thanks to all ASDIN members for electing me to this leadership role. I wish also to extend my congratulations to Aris Q. Urbanes, MD for the outstanding service he performed as ASDIN President from 2012-2014. Dr. Urbanes will continue to be a key voice in the society as Past-President and Executive Committee member. I will benefit greatly from his wisdom and continued support as I transition into my new role. The purpose of this message is to tell you a little bit about myself, my vision for the society, and my understanding of my role as president.
I was born in Odessa, in what is now Ukraine (former USSR) in 1972. My parents immigrated to Cleveland, Ohio in 1979. Sadly, I must confess to being a Cleveland Browns fan. I went to college at Dartmouth, in New Hampshire. Subsequently, I started medical school at the Ohio State University College of Medicine. I originally entered medical school certain that I wanted to be a surgeon, but in my third and fourth year of medical school, at the Cleveland Clinic, I fell in love with internal medicine and interventional cardiology. I began my residency at University of Michigan hospital with the intent to return to the Cleveland Clinic as a cardiology fellow. In the middle of my intern year, in 2000, rumors began to circulate about a new subspecialty dedicated to the care of the interventional needs of the dialysis population – interventional nephrology (IN). As I learned more about our young discipline, I realized that IN represents an opportunity for a young physician to fundamentally shape the practice of medicine. With this in mind, I went to Northwestern University for fellowship. At Northwestern, I was trained by Dr. Peter Ivanovich, one of the original interventional nephrologists working with Belding Scribner on the Scribner shunt that made chronic hemodialysis a reality. I began my current position at the University of Wisconsin in 2004. My research career has focused mainly on device and technique innovation in IN.
At this moment in time, ASDIN is in great shape with a very bright future. Yet there are many challenges and opportunities ahead. How will reimbursement of vascular access procedures be handled by CMS? How will the ACO model affect ASDIN? What sorts of new procedures are coming down the pike? What will training for these procedures encompass? What basic and translational science needs to be done to take our discipline to the next level? What is the next level? These are all questions that we as a society need to answer.
I believe that the answers to these questions need to come from the members of the society rather than its president. My goal as president of ASDIN is not merely to articulate a vision, but, rather, to fully understand the vision of its members and translate it into action. To that end, ASDIN will be sending out an evaluation via email, akin to a SWOT analysis, in which I ask your participation. The results of this evaluation will be used to shape the discussion at a future ASDIN leadership retreat. Also, please contact me directly via email if you have any thoughts to share regarding your practice or interests – I am available at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you all for your dedication to interventional nephrology, our patients, and ASDIN.
Alex Yevzlin, MD