Elisabeth Heath, MD, FACP
Elisabeth Heath, MD, FACP, of the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute and Wayne State University School of Medicine, has been appointed Associate Center Director for Transitional Sciences, effective immediately. She will report to Gerold Bepler, MD, PhD, President and Chief Executive Officer of Karmanos Cancer Institute and Chair of the Department of Oncology at Wayne State University School of Medicine.
In this new position, Dr. Heath will enhance the ongoing work being done in translational research; create opportunities by facilitating interactions and communications between scientists and clinicians; advocate for resources to expedite multiprincipal investigator projects; and develop teams of scientists and clinicians for major research grants.
In addition to her new responsibilities, Dr. Heath continues to lead the genitourinary oncology multidisciplinary team at Karmanos as well as serve as Medical Director of the Infusion Center, Director of Prostate Cancer Research, and Patricia C. and E. Jan Hartmann Endowed Chair for Prostate Cancer Research.
“Dr. Heath, with her expertise, strategic abilities, proactive communication style, and proven results, continues to advocate for and advance cancer research while engaging other scientists, physicians, and constituents,” said Dr. Bepler. “She is driven and committed to develop solutions for this complicated disease. It’s at the heart of everything she does so that more people survive cancer and thrive. This, and her ability to excite, engage, and retain talent, makes her an excellent choice for this leadership position.”
Clinical and Research Trials
Dr. Heath’s research focus is conducting clinical and translational research trials in genitourinary malignancies by investigating new therapies for preventing and treating cancer. She has been an active clinical and scientific member of Karmanos since 2003 and became a full Professor of Oncology at Wayne State University School of Medicine in 2013.
“It’s critical that we as scientific leaders work together to move promising cancer research from the lab to the clinic, and with the resources and evidence-based findings, share innovative treatments with the community,” said Dr. Heath. “Enhancing the patient’s understanding of clinical trials and improving access to innovative treatments through trial enrollment are the driving force to develop new cancer treatments. I’m excited to accept this new role and work with our incredibly talented team of committed scientists to achieve best practices that lead to increased patient survival.”
Accomplishments and Experience
Dr. Heath is active with several organizations, such as ASCO, the Michigan Cancer Consortium, and the Southwest Oncology Group. Recently, she received the Michigan Cancer Consortium Inaugural Champion Award for her leadership excellence, success, and impact in the fight against cancer.
In addition, she is the principal investigator for a U.S. Department of Defense grant supporting the nationally recognized Prostate Clinical Trials Cancer Consortium and is co-investigator on multiple scientific grants with her peers at Karmanos and Wayne State University School of Medicine.
Dr. Heath spearheaded Karmanos’ annual Prostate Cancer Symposium and created the Prostate Cancer Advocacy Program at Karmanos, which serves as a model to educate and engage survivors and raise awareness of prostate cancer screening. The program also offers an opportunity for patients to communicate directly with scientists. This invaluable experience increases the understanding between both parties and helps scientists enhance their application to secure research funding. ■