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Dotter Interventional Institute

Director's Message

In 2001 the Dotter Interventional Institute is celebrating its 11th anniversary. The growth the Institute has experienced has been phenomenal. It is difficult to imagine that only 11 years have elapsed since the Oregon state legislature formally established the Institute as a separate, free-standing division of OHSU’s School of Medicine. The impetus for the Institute’s creation was a $2 million gift from Bill Cook with the challenge to form a multidisciplinary institute of interventional medicine whose mission would encompass interventional education, research and patient care. In its short history, the Institute has fulfilled the legacy of Charles Dotter and is well on its way to meeting Bill Cook’s challenge.

Guided by the vision, care and nurturing of Dr. Josef Rösch, the Institute flourished in its early years, expanding its faculty, and developing meaningful clinical and educational programs. He was responsible for the recruitment of Drs. Fred Keller, Rob Barton, Paul Lakin and Bryan Petersen, who formed the nucleus of the clinical body interventional service. Recognizing the importance of neurointervention, Rösch’s recruitment of Dr. Stan Barnwell was an initial step in the development of a world-class neurointerventional section. The addition of Drs. Gary Nesbit and Robert Andrews enhanced the clinical and research capabilities of both the body and neurointerventional services. The Institute welcomes its most recent addition to the clinical faculty, Dr. John Kaufman, who brings his excellent reputation and expertise in non-invasive vascular imaging and stent grafting. Recruitment of Dr. Dusan Pavcnik to the Institute’s research faculty has been another major accomplishment. Pavcnik is well-known for his research in developing new devices for use in blood vessels and the heart.

Concurrently, the Institute’s clinical and research facilities were undergoing expansion and replacement. At both OHSU and Veterans Affairs hospitals, six new angiographic labs have been added. Opened in 1989, the Charles Dotter Memorial Research Laboratory has been remodeled and expanded, and one older research angiographic unit was replaced in 1998.

Educational programs initiated during the past 11 years have matured and grown. Applications for the accredited fellowship in vascular and interventional radiology continue to increase every year. Many of those completing this fellowship have entered the ranks of academic interventional radiologists at prominent institutions.

Our neurointerventional fellowship continues to attract top-notch fellows each year. Aside from long-term clinical fellowships, the short-term visiting fellowship program allows practicing interventionalists to brush up on their skills during the one to three weeks these fellows spend at the Institute. The Stroke Therapy Program, developed by Barnwell, is another example of the Institute’s commitment to education. Many local and regional northwest interventionalists and their patients have benefited greatly from this course. Finally, the Institute has been a leader in the field of tele-education, pioneering many live case transmissions and lectures to distant locations, both in the United States and abroad.

Another significant milestone for the Dotter Institute was the establishment of the first endowed chair dedicated to interventional radiology research. Named the "Josef Rösch Chair of Interventional Radiology Research," it was funded through a generous gift from Bill Cook, and the many contributions from Rösch’s numerous colleagues, friends and former trainees. The Institute is pleased that Dusan Pavcnik has been named as the first holder of the Rösch Chair.

Many changes have occurred in the practice of interventional radiology this past decade, particularly in vascular interventions, where the formerly distinct lines between traditional vascular surgery and endovascular intervention are now becoming blurred. The long-established, close ties between OHSU’s vascular surgery section and the Institute are becoming even stronger. Together, we are working to develop an integrated vascular center and unified clinical practice.

I feel both fortunate and proud to have been the director of the Institute during so many of its years of unparalleled growth and progress. Neither would have been possible without the extraordinary generosity of Bill Cook, and the hard work and dedication of our talented faculty and staff. I personally thank each of you for your loyalty and effort. With the great team the Institute has assembled, I feel confident entering the new millennium that our second decade will be even more successful than our first.