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Rebecca Brienza, MD, MPH

Associate Professor; Director, VACHS Center of Excellence in Primary Care Education

Years active at Yale: 1999-2004; 2009-present

Dr Brienza is being recognized for her leadership in the development and implementation of the Center of Excellence (COE) in Primary Care Education at VA ConnecticutHealthcare System. The COE is an innovative model of interprofessional education and team-based collaborative care. Dr Brienza was successful in receiving one of five competitive grants to develop this program in 2011 and since then has been a pioneer and strong advocate for the advancement of inter-professional education. The COE has developed many educational innovations that have been adopted throughout VA primary care as well as across the Yale internal medicine residency program. These have included the MD residents ambulatory immersion block schedule; the IMPROVE clinic, an interprofessional education and care initiative aimed at reducing polypharmacy in the elderly; integration of physical therapy into primary care teams; a robust quality improvement program; a health policy curriculum; numerous regional and national presentations,and the first interprofessional nurse practitioner residency program (now adopted by all COE sites). The COE program has included Yale internal medicine residents and medical students; Yale nurse practitioner students and post-graduate residents; health psychology pharmacy and social work residents;and Yale Physician Associate students. As director of this program, Dr Brienza has served as a mentor, role model,and leader to all trainees.