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M. Diane McKee named chair of Department of Family Medicine & Community Health

Professor and vice chair at Albert Einstein College of Medicine to join UMMS in June

By Mark L. Shelton

UMass Medical School Communications

April 11, 2019
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Diane McKee, MD, MS

M. Diane McKee, MD, MS, will join UMass Medical School and UMass Memorial Medical Center in June as the chair of the Department of Family Medicine & Community Health. Dr. McKee comes to UMMS from her position as professor and vice chair of research in the Department of Family and Social Medicine at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. A graduate of Cornell University and the University of Tennessee College of Medicine in Memphis, she was a resident in family medicine at Memorial Hospital of Rhode Island. She holds a Master of Science in clinical research methods. Dr. McKee succeeds Daniel Lasser, MD, MPH.

“For more than three decades, Daniel Lasser has served in a variety of leadership roles at both UMass Medical School and UMass Memorial Medical Center, leaving an indelible impact on our academic, service and clinical missions. We are proud to introduce his successor, who we strongly believe will continue to exemplify the values and qualities we have appreciated in Dr. Lasser,” said Terence R. Flotte, MD, the Celia and Isaac Haidak Professor of Medical Education, executive deputy chancellor, provost and dean of the School of Medicine, in making the announcement.

“Dr. McKee’s research reflects her commitment to health equity, primary care and the emerging concept of a ‘learning health system.’ She was the founding director of the New York City Research and Improvement Networking Group, which seeks to influence practice and improve health outcomes for urban primary care practices; she has also had research support from a broad range of sources, including the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute and Montefiore-Einstein’s Institute for Clinical and Translational Research, where she served as the health research implementation core director,” said Dr. Flotte.

McKee joined the faculty of Albert Einstein upon completion of her residency and built an engaged and progressive career as a physician and teacher committed to social justice and health equity, and to meeting the needs of underserved communities. She has practiced as a primary care provider in community health centers in Yonkers and the Bronx throughout her career.

McKee has published more than 60 papers in professional journals, including Annals of Family Medicine, Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, Clinical Trials, the Journal of Primary Care & Community Health and Cancer. In 2013, she was inducted into the Leo Davidoff Society at Albert Einstein, in honor of her significant contributions to the education of students.

“Dr. McKee will lead an academic department here that has been perennially rated in the top 10 percent in primary care education in the US News & World Report annual rankings of medical schools, and one that has been a focal point for our academic and clinical relationships with primary care providers throughout the region as well as a key resource for community health,” said Flotte. “Dr. Lasser leaves a department committed to meeting the health care needs of communities across the state and we have every confidence that Dr. McKee will build impressively upon this legacy.”

Flotte thanked Lynda M. Young, MD, professor of pediatrics, and Gregory A. Volturo, MD, chair and professor of emergency medicine, who chaired the search committee. “Please join us in thanking them for this work and Dr. Lasser for his service and in welcoming Dr. McKee to our institutions.”