I am excited to share some highlights of the University of Wisconsin Department of Family Medicine and Community Health. This department consistently ranks in the top ten departments of family medicine in the country. We have approximately 200 faculty in eighteen clinics providing state of the art care to the communities of Wisconsin. We have a growing research team that achieves more than $7 million in annual federal funding. We have a dynamic educational program that has resulted in family medicine being the highest chosen specialty in our medical school (’24). We train and support sixty-four family medicine residents in the state with approximately 67% remaining in Wisconsin. We have one of the largest fellowship training programs in the country including fellowships in academic faculty development, primary care research, integrative health, sports medicine, addiction medicine, and LGBTQ+ health, and rural family medicine obstetrics.

The medical culture of the past has been successful in finding the causes of diseases and treating them. The medical culture of the future will create a new salutogenic science that uses inter-professional teams to explore, recognize, and reproduce healing patterns. This is the time to develop value-based delivery strategies that open the doors for equitable access to everyone, particularly the most vulnerable.

Shifting medical culture towards a better balance between disease and health needs the support of good people, and we have plenty. We have a highly functioning leadership team that guides our work in support of the Wisconsin Idea. This process includes listening to the wants and needs of our communities and then applying science and strategy to improve the health of those we serve. There is no better time or place to reinvigorate, if not reinvent, our discipline towards this ideal goal.

Our mission centers around doing good work through and with other people. If we can help you fulfill your calling to research, teach, and deliver healthy outcomes, we will all thrive.

I am so excited to get to work with you.

With gratitude,

Dave Rakel