Emory Report
October 18, 2004
Volume 57, Number 8


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October 18 , 2004
UM president to speak on U.S. need for health insurance

BY Kathi Baker

Mary Sue Coleman, president of the University of Michigan (UM) in Ann Arbor, will deliver the next Future Makers Lecture, Oct. 25 at 4 p.m. in Winship Ballroom, on the host of medical, economic and social problems arising from the estimated 45 million Americans who lack health insurance.

Coleman served as co-chair of the Institute of Medicine’s (IOM) Committee on the Consequences of Uninsurance along with Arthur Kellermann, professor and chair of emergency medicine at Emory. The committee’s sixth and final report, issued earlier this year, recommended that the United States offer universal health care coverage by the year 2010 that would be affordable for individuals and families and sustainable by society.

In its series of studies, the committee estimated that 18,000 persons a year die unnecessarily due to lack of medical coverage. In addition, even the health care of middle-class Americans is affected because the millions of uninsured persons financially destabilize the nation’s hospitals and clinics with health problems that could be treated more economically and effectively if caught earlier, the committee said.

“Mary Sue Coleman has been a leader in higher education for more than two decades,” said Provost Earl Lewis, who as graduate dean at UM was on the search committee that brought Coleman to Ann Arbor. “Her work on the IOM committee with Arthur Kellermann underscores her reach, talents, abilities and commitment to leadership on vital social matters.”

Following Coleman’s lecture, Kellermann will join a panel to discuss the health insurance policy debate and what role it is likely to play in the upcoming presidential election. The panel also includes:

Merle Black, Asa G. Candler Professor of Politics and Government. Black is a leading authority on politics in the South and often is called upon by national media to discuss American national government, Southern politics, political parties and elections.

Randolph Martin, associate dean of medicine for clinical development, director of the echocardiology lab at Emory Hospital, and professor of medicine. Martin pioneered Emory’s Mini-Medical School and has been medical correspondent for Atlanta’s WSB-TV for 10 years.

Kenneth Thorpe, Robert W. Woodruff Professor and chair of health policy and management. Thorpe is highly regarded nationally as a health care policy analyst and is a frequent commentator on health care issues for national media. He works with agencies and policymakers to develop and evaluate alternative approaches for providing health insurance to the uninsured.

Coleman is a professor of biological chemistry at the UM Medical School and a professor of chemistry in UM’s College of Literature, Science and the Arts. From 1995–2002, she was president of the University of Iowa.

Elected to the Institute of Medicine in 1997, Coleman also is a fellow of the American Association for the Advance-ment of Science and of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She earned her undergraduate degree in chemistry from Grinnell College, where she currently serves as a trustee. She earned her doctorate in biochemistry from the University of North Carolina.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, call 404-712-9266.