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VOL. 131 | NO. 253 | Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Infectious Disease Specialist Blatz Joins Resurrection Health

By Kate Simone

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Infectious disease specialist Dr. Peter Blatz recently joined the staff of Resurrection Health. In his new role, Blatz provides expert consultation on a variety of infectious diseases in both inpatient and outpatient settings. Currently he is focusing on providing HIV and hepatitis C care as well as teaching Resurrection’s family medicine resident physicians. 

Dr. Peter Blatz

Hometown: I was born and raised in sunny Fajardo, Puerto Rico, but I have lived in Biloxi, Mississippi, for the past six years and consider it to be my adopted home.

Experience: I graduated from medical school in Puerto Rico and moved to the states in 2005, where I trained in internal medicine and infectious disease while serving in the United States Air Force. I served a total of 11 years in the Air Force, which included numerous stateside assignments in Mississippi, Ohio and Texas, as well as overseas duty that included two deployments.

Who has had the greatest influence on you and why? In my medical career, my greatest influence was a dear family friend, Dr. Eddie Madera.  He was a brilliant physician who turned down lucrative job opportunities and spent his whole career serving the underserved in Puerto Rico.

What attracted you to Resurrection Health? I was attracted to Resurrection Health because of the work that they accomplish by providing high-quality health care to those who have limited access to medical care.

What are your goals in your new position? My first goal will be to establish a program where we can efficiently provide treatment to those patients living with hepatitis C. Secondly, at Resurrection we are blessed to have a family medicine residency where we train young doctors in primary care. One of my goals is to assist in resident education by expanding their knowledge in both HIV and hepatitis C care.

Tell us a little about the hepatitis C program you’re developing. Hepatitis C (HCV) is currently a significant problem in the state of Tennessee. The most recent data from the CDC shows that from 2009-2013 the rates of acute HCV have increased 200 percent in our state. What complicates this issue further is that many patients don’t even know they have the disease! Once they are diagnosed, they often face difficulties in finding providers who are comfortable treating the disease, as well as difficulty obtaining the necessary medications due to the high cost. Our overall goal is to make sure that individuals who typically would not have access to care do not fall through the cracks. We have already started seeing HCV patients at our Frayser site and hope to expand access within the next several weeks. More info: www.cdc.gov/nchhstp/stateprofiles/pdf/tennessee_profile.pdf

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? This is a difficult question. I think my greatest blessing by far has been my wife and two daughters.

If you could give one piece of advice to young people, what would it be? Work hard. Nothing in life comes easy.

Maurice Williams, associate director of the University of Memphis Institute on Disability, has received the Leadership Award at the State of the Art Conference on Postsecondary Education and Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities. Williams was recognized for his efforts and leadership in promoting inclusive post-secondary education programs in Tennessee and the Mid-South, for developing avenues to start IPSE programs at historically black colleges and universities, and for his leadership on the steering committee of the Southeast Alliance of Inclusive Post-Secondary Education Programs.

Denise Griffin

Attorney Denise Griffin has joined the Memphis office of Bass, Berry & Sims PLC. In her new role, Griffin assists clients in real estate transactions, counseling public and private companies though the acquisition, financing, disposition and leasing of real property. Prior to joining Bass, Berry & Sims, Griffin served as in-house counsel at a Manhattan real estate investment firm. 

BTI Consulting has included Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs LLP in its Client Service A-Team 2017 rankings, which recognize America’s top law firms in client service. The ranking of nearly 300 law firms on the list is the result of more than 330 interviews with corporate counsel at the world’s leading organizations.

Southwest Tennessee Community College’s communications and marketing department has been awarded seven 2016 MarCom Awards for its marketing efforts, including four Gold Awards and three Honorable Mentions. The department also won five National Council for Marketing and Public Relations District 2 Medallion Awards, which recognize outstanding achievement in communications at community and technical colleges. The college won a Gold award, two Silver awards and two Bronze awards.

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