Kaiser Permanente medical school names its first dean

Mark Schuster, MD, PhD, has been named the founding dean of the Kaiser Permanente School of Medicine, set to open in Pasadena, California, in 2019.

“I’m excited to be a part of the Kaiser Permanente School of Medicine’s vision to transform medical education by combining cutting-edge educational techniques with a focus on population health, data analytics, patient engagement and underserved populations,” Schuster said in a statement. “Kaiser Permanente’s leadership in integrated health care, which emphasizes keeping patients healthy while providing the best in care when they are ill, will offer an unprecedented learning opportunity for our students.”

Schuster has spent a good portion of his career at Boston Children’s Hospital, completing his pediatric residency there and serving as its chief of general pediatrics and vice chair for health policy in the medicine department since 2007. Over the same period, he’s served as a professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School.

The Kaiser role will be a return to the West Coast for him, however, as he previously served as a professor of pediatrics and health services at UCLA Schools of Medicine and Public Health from 1994 until 2007. He’ll begin his new role at Kaiser in October.

“We look forward to the visionary and inspirational leadership that Dr. Schuster will bring to our school,” said Holly Humphrey, MD, Kaiser Permanente School of Medicine board chair and dean for medical education at the University of Chicago. “His insightful, evidence-based perspective, along with his commitment to the well-being of our students, patients and communities, are aligned with the practice of Permanente Medicine and will help catalyze the school's reach toward ambitious goals."