April 14, 2004 

WORCESTER, Mass. -- Azra Raza, MD, a world-renowned clinical oncologist has joined UMass Memorial Medical Center as chief of the Division of Hematology Oncology in the Department of Medicine. She has also been appointed professor of medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS). 

“Dr. Raza is committed to building an outstanding clinical program in hematology and oncology, emphasizing cutting-edge therapies and new approaches to diagnosis and treatment of all types of cancer, particularly GI, GU and breast cancers, as well as hematologic malignancies," said Robert W. Finberg, MD, the Richard M. Haidack Professor of Medicine and chair of the Department of Medicine at UMMS and UMass Memorial. "We look forward to her arrival in July." 

Raza comes to UMass Memorial from Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center in Chicago where she was professor of medicine and director of the Section of Myeloid Diseases and MDS Center since 1992.  She completed her medical education in Karachi, Pakistan and her training in internal medicine at the University of Maryland, Franklin Square Hospital and Georgetown/VA Medical Center in Washington, D.C. 

Following completion of a fellowship in medical oncology at Rosewell Park Institute in Buffalo in 1980, Raza remained there for the next nine years, eventually leading the Section of Cell Biology. It was at the Rosewell Park Institute that Raza began her work in the cellular dynamics of bone marrows in patients with acute myeloid leukemia and myelodysplastic syndromes; since 1984, her work has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health. 

Raza has authored more than 200 full-length papers, 13 book chapters, 470 abstracts, and edited a book specifically devoted to myelodysplastic syndromes and secondary leukemias. She also serves on numerous national and international panels as a reviewer, consultant and advisor on the subject. 

UMass Memorial Health Care is Central Massachusetts’ largest not-for-profit health care delivery system, covering the complete health care continuum with teaching hospitals, affiliated community hospitals, freestanding primary care practices, ambulatory outpatient clinics, long-term care facilities, home health agencies, hospice programs, a rehabilitation group and mental health services. UMass Memorial is the clinical partner of the University of Massachusetts Medical School, one of the fastest growing medical schools in the country, attracting more than $153 million in research funding annually.  A perennial top finisher in the annual US News & World Report ranking of primary care medical schools, UMMS comprises a medical school, graduate school of nursing, graduate school of biomedical sciences and an active research enterprise, and is a leader in health sciences education, research and public service. 

Contact: Mark L. Shelton  508-856-2000