Mark D. Okusa Elected President of the American Society of Nephrology

Dr. Okusa will lead an organization of nearly 17,000 health professionals dedicated to leading the fight against kidney diseases.

Article ID: 684326

Released: 1-Nov-2017 9:00 AM EDT

Source Newsroom: American Society of Nephrology (ASN)

Highlights

  • The American Society of Nephrology (ASN), the world’s largest organization of kidney health professionals, has elected Mark D. Okusa, MD, FASN, as the next ASN President. 
  • Dr. Okusa officially assumes his role as ASN President during the society’s annual meeting, ASN Kidney Week 2017, the largest gathering of kidney care specialists in the world, and will begin his term on January 1, 2018.

Newswise — New Orleans, LA (November 4, 2017)—The American Society of Nephrology (ASN) is pleased to announce that Mark D. Okusa, MD, FASN, has been elected ASN President for the coming year. He will assume his new role at ASN Kidney Week 2017, at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, Louisiana. Dr. Okusa succeeds Eleanor D. Lederer, MD, FASN. 

Dr. Okusa is currently the John C. Buchanan Distinguished Professor of Medicine at the University of Virginia School of Medicine, as well as Chief of Nephrology. He also serves as Director of the Center for Immunity, Inflammation, and Regenerative Medicine.

Board certified in internal medicine and nephrology, Dr. Okusa has been in practice for more than 20 years, and has been voted as one of Castle Connolly’s Best Doctors in America each year since 2001. His NIH funded research focuses on the role of inflammation and immune cells in initiating and maintaining acute kidney injury, and his findings in preclinical studies have served as a foundation for clinical trials for both acute kidney injury and progressive kidney disease. Dr. Okusa has and continues to serve on a number of national and international panels to help develop clinical practice guidelines and set the research agenda for acute kidney injury.  

Dr. Okusa also has a history of close involvement with ASN, having served the organization in many capacities such as on the council, as the past Chair of the Acute Kidney Injury Advisory Committee, and past Chair of the ASN Program Committee. He has also served as the Associate Editor of Nephron Physiology and Kidney International and is currently a member of the editorial boards of the American Journal of Nephrology, Kidney International and Journal of the American Society of Nephrology. Dr. Okusa was a regular member of the NIH Pathobiology of Kidney Disease Study Section, and currently serves as a standing member of the NIDDK-KUH Fellowship Review Panel. Through his contributions as principal investigator on an NIH T32 training grant in kidney disease and inflammation, he has fostered the development of physician scientists and research scientists.

“I am honored and excited about being elected President of the American Society of Nephrology for this coming year and very grateful to the membership for giving me this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” Okusa says.

Among various new initiatives and innovations that Dr. Okusa is looking forward to working on, he is especially passionate about reinvigorating the field of nephrology. He notes that ASN has made major efforts toward improving the workforce, including sponsoring survey studies in collaboration with the George Washington University, and running programs such as STARS and TREKS, for example, which are ongoing efforts to continue to build the pipeline. “I’m optimistic that through our collective efforts via both programmatic and ‘grass roots’ efforts at each institution and by every nephrologist, we will continue to maintain a vibrant subspecialty,” he says.

Dr. Okusa also believes in the importance of collaboration. “Over the next year, I would like to continue to build bridges with organizations within the US and globally. Kidney diseases do not have borders, and collaboration and synergy will be the key moving forward.”   

“I would like to let our kidney patients know that we are here to serve you and improve your care and quality of life,” Okusa says. “As President of ASN, I will commit my efforts to ensuring that we achieve this aim.” 

About ASN Kidney Week 2017

ASN Kidney Week 2017, the largest nephrology meeting of its kind, will provide a forum for more than 13,000 professionals to discuss the latest findings in kidney health research and engage in educational sessions related to advances in the care of patients with kidney and related disorders. Kidney Week 2017 will take place October 31–November 5, 2017 in New Orleans, LA.

About the American Society of Nephrology

Since 1966, the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) has been leading the fight to prevent, treat, and cure kidney diseases throughout the world by educating health professionals and scientists, advancing research and innovation, communicating new knowledge, and advocating for the highest quality care for patients. ASN has nearly 17,000 members representing 112 countries. For more information, please visit www.asn-online.org or contact us at 202-640-4660.

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