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Research a priority for new head of medicine

Stephen Archer started his five-year term as head
of the Department of Medicine in November. 

Stephen Archer enjoyed his time as a medical student at Queen’s in the late 1970s and early ’80s, but that’s not why he accepted the job as head of the Department of Medicine.

“It was mostly the superb medical school, the existing strengths of the department and the quality of our fully accredited training program that brought me back to Queen’s – it wasn’t just fond memories,” says Dr. Archer. “I came back for the opportunity to run a great department, pursue my personal research, and help build a medical program I care about.”

Dr. Archer started his five-year term in November after spending four years as chief of cardiology at the University of Chicago.

He believes Queen’s produces great research and has a solid reputation. A fervent researcher himself, Dr. Archer has published more than 200 papers and won numerous awards, including the Research Achievement Award from the Canadian Cardiovascular Society and the Distinguished Scientist Award form the American College of Cardiology. His research focuses on defining the role of the mitochondria in the causation of diseases such as pulmonary hypertension and cancer.

“Richard Reznick (dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences) wants our department to be more research-intensive and that really resonates with me. I envision a growing, vibrant Department of Medicine with clinical programs of distinction, innovative educational programs and research that is recognized as excellent on the national and international stage,” says Dr. Archer.

Archer was attracted to Queen’s by the quality of the leadership teams at the three affiliated hospitals, KGH, Hotel Dieu and Providence Continuing Care Centre.

Dr. Archer is meeting with each faculty member in the department to get to know them. He wants their feedback and is encouraging them to get involved in mapping the department’s future through a series of three retreats to be held in early 2013.

“My mantra is everyone in the Department of Medicine needs to be a leader,” Dr. Archer says.

Click here to read Dr. Archer’s blog.