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Seton Hall, HackensackUHN name 1st med school dean

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Seton Hall University and Hackensack University Health Network announced Dr. Bonita Stanton will be the founding dean of their school of medicine, starting next month.

Stanton will lead the school, slated to open in fall 2018, with a global view of the medical world.

In her years in the industry, she has worked with many populations in the U.S. and countries such as Bangladesh, China or Egypt, as well as sits on the editorial board of a number of journals.

She is leaving Michigan, where she was vice dean of research at Wayne State University School of Medicine.

“Whether working with low-income populations in the United States, women and children in Bangladesh, migrant workers in China or rural youth in Africa, Dean Stanton’s calling has been to bring the healing and compassion of health care to the world’s most vulnerable peoples,” Seton Hall President A. Gabriel Esteban said in a statement. “Working with major universities and hospitals, as well as the World Bank, the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization, she exemplifies the servant leadership spirit that is a profound part of our mission at Seton Hall.”

Stanton’s work has continuously been funded by the National Institutes of Health, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Fogarty Foundation, the World AIDS Foundation, Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation and the Commonwealth Fund, according to Wayne State.

She has also consulted with numerous groups, including the World Bank, World Health Organization, UNICEF, PATH and the International Vaccine Institute.

“We proudly welcome Dr. Bonita Stanton as the founding dean of our new medical school,” said Robert Garrett, CEO and president of the Hackensack University Health Network. “Our rigorous search yielded outstanding candidates from across the nation. President Esteban and I are confident that Dr. Stanton, with her outstanding background and accomplishments, will lead this school of medicine to become one of the finest in the U.S., while maintaining our shared tradition and mission to educate the physicians of tomorrow in a groundbreaking, collaborative environment.”

Stanton is charged with helping New Jersey curb the shortage of physicians in the state, which is estimated to be 2,500 fewer than needed by 2020, according to Hackensack.

The partnership will allow students from the school to have a clinical teaching environment in the health system, and Seton Hall plans to co-locate its College of Nursing and School of Health and Medical Sciences in the new facility. This move aligns with the way health care is provided today, with teams of medical professionals working outside of their respective silos, Hackensack has previously said.

The school and health system signed an agreement in June 2015, and have since received a $16.9 million award from the New Jersey Economic Development Authority’s Grow NJ program.

The School of Medicine, which is slated to accept its first students within two years, has already received preliminary approval from the New Jersey Board of Medical Examiners, subject to seeking preliminary accreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education — which requires a dean appointment prior to approval, according to Hackensack.

“My career has focused on improving health outcomes for all persons, regardless of race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status and geographic location,” Stanton said. “I share the widespread concern that U.S. health care costs are among the highest in the world, but our health outcomes are only fair in comparison with all nations and poor in comparison with our socioeconomic peer nations. Extensive research speaks to the importance of delivering preventive and curative care with a far greater emphasis on community-based services, reserving our tertiary hospitals for technologically complex procedures and treatments and the very ill.”

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