Long-Time Emergency Medicine Professor Christy Hopkins, MD, MPH, MBA, Named Inaugural Department Chair

Jun 22, 2022 9:00 AM

Christy Hopkins, MD, MPH, MBA, has been named the inaugural chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine in the Spencer Fox Eccles School of Medicine at University of Utah.

Christy Hopkins, MD, MPH, MBA, emergency medicine professor and physician with University of Utah Health, has been named the anaugural chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine in the Spencer Fox Eccles School of Medicine at University of Utah.

Hopkins will oversee a department that has expanded to nearly 40 faculty, 20 advance practice clinicians, 7 fellows, 27 residents, and more than 250 staff at three clinical sites. The department cares for nearly 90,000 patients within the region each year and accounts for 40% of all university hospital admissions.

Dr. Hopkins is a uniquely skilled leader,” said Michael L. Good, MD, Senior Vice President for Health Sciences, Executive Dean of the Spencer Fox Eccles School of Medicine, and U of U Health CEO. “She has contributed in important ways to the growth of emergency medicine at U of U Health and most notably helped the once Division of Emergency Medicine become the Department of Emergency Medicine.”

Department faculty now represent all major subspecialties in emergency medicine. This includes critical care, EMS, global health, hospice and palliative care, informatics, toxicology, sports medicine, ultrasound, wilderness medicine, and hyperbaric medicine/wound care.

Since 2002, Hopkins has held many faculty roles, including medical director of U of U Hospitals emergency department, which she helped expand to two additional sites. She also facilitated the department’s transition to electronic medical records.

More recently, Hopkins has had oversight for clinical programming and quality initiatives. And since July 2021, she has been the interim leader of the Division of Emergency Medicine, which became a department in February of this year.

“We are grateful for Dr. Hopkins active leadership in her interim role,” said Good. “And we look forward to the roadmap of success she has developed for the department.”

The roadmap emphasizes diversity of people, ideas, and experiences. It also includes investing in people at all levels of the department and building strong teams.

“Strong teams bring excellence to our missions,” said Hopkins. “They are born from our ability to continue fostering a collaborative culture, cultivating a spirit of innovation, and committing to the highest quality of care.”

As an academic leader, Hopkins has expanded opportunities for graduate medical education in emergency medicine. The U’s residency and fellowship positions regularly draw top candidates from around the country. She has also kept the department active in undergraduate medical education, recognizing the importance of new MDs graduating with clinical experience in emergency settings.

Research has also been given a boost under Hopkins’ leadership. The department is already an important site for clinical trials involving Acute Coronary Syndrome, TBI, cardiac arrest, pain management, and other conditions. Hopkins and her team continue developing collaborations within the U and with outside partners to broaden the portfolio.

“We have started bolstering our research foundation with the needed investments to support growth,” she said. “We recruited a research fellow and hired an amazing research director who will grow our programs and help obtain extramural grants.”

Hopkins leadership within emergency medicine stands against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Without doubt, the last two years have been some of the most challenging of our careers,” she said. “As a group, we moved through the fear and uncertainty towards bravery and boldness. The challenges [of COVID-19] cemented who we are as a specialty, and also what we as a group have built and become.”

Dr. Hopkins is a tremendous leader,” said Good. “She has a unique vision for the future. We congratulate and welcome her as she steps into this important new leadership position within U of U Health.”

###

emergency medicine school of medicine christy hopkins