Aleksandra Zgierska, MD, PhD, an associate professor in the University of Wisconsin Department of Family Medicine and Community Health (DFMCH) and Department of Population Health Sciences, is a 2019 recipient of a UW Health Leadership Excellence Award.

Aleksandra Zgierska, MD, PhD

Dr. Aleksandra Zgierska, pictured here with Dr. David Rabago, received a UW Health Leadership Excellence Award for her work to respond to the opioid epidemic and redesign addiction management throughout our health system.

The award recognizes outstanding clinicians who demonstrate exceptional leadership skills outside of their home department as well as at an enterprise-wide level. Honorees were nominated by their peers with letters of support from colleagues, community leaders and patient families.

Dr. Zgierska is one of the primary leaders in formulating UW Health’s response to the opioid epidemic. In 2014, she was an early responder who deployed and studied methods to support physicians and teams to provide care for patients with chronic pain. She is currently working to redesign addiction management throughout our system.

She is the principal investigator of seven active grants totaling more than $12 million. She developed mindfulness-based interventions used locally and nationally to help patients with chronic pain; created content on responsible opioid prescribing, safety monitoring and addiction care; and created educational and clinical tools used at VA hospitals across the US.

She also transformed the Wisconsin Chapter of the American Society of Addiction Medicine into one of the most active and vital chapters in the country. She is at the forefront of dealing with addiction as a treatable chronic disease rather than a personal failing, and testified in a case against criminalization of drug use during pregnancy that currently rests with the Supreme Court.

Dr. Zgierska received her award at a ceremony on June 6, 2019.

Learn more about the 2019 Physician Excellence Awards (u-Connect; login required)

Published: June 2019