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Spencer Dorn, MD, MPH, MHA

Spencer Dorn, MD, MPH, MHA, associate professor of medicine in the division of gastroenterology and hepatology, has been appointed to lead changes that will enhance care across the department of medicine.

“Dr. Dorn is a creative physician who knows how to get things done,” said Ron Falk, MD, chair of the department of medicine. “He will help us rethink how we deliver health care, and put new care delivery models into action that can advance our patient care mission.”

Dorn will focus on enhancing existing care models–while developing new ones–to better meet the needs of patient populations. Initiatives will include multidisciplinary clinics, integrated behavioral care, and virtual care solutions that leverage technology to reach patients beyond the clinic and hospital walls.

“In today’s hyper-competitive, value-based, on-demand world, we must develop new, more effective, and more efficient ways of compassionately caring for our patients and serving our community,” Dorn said.  “At the same time, we must support our department’s 600-plus physicians and advanced practice providers who are deeply committed to clinical excellence. I am so honored to serve our department in this new role.”

Already, Dorn is leading the department’s new eConsult program, whereby referring clinicians use the electronic health record to obtain specialist input on focused clinical questions. To date, 100% of referring clinicians have been satisfied and 70% of the time a specialist clinic visit has not been needed.

Dorn’s clinical practice focuses on functional GI and motility disorders, for which he has served as an investigator on numerous clinical trials, co-authored national practice guidelines for constipation, and has been consistently named to the list of “Best Doctors in America.” Since 2012, Dorn has served as vice chief of the division of gastroenterology and hepatology, as well as a UNC Health Care Lead Informatics Physician. He broadly understands the forces shaping healthcare, having served on multiple national gastroenterology practice committees, and presented and published widely on health policy, performance measurement and digital health technologies.

“Dr. Dorn is an outstanding doctor and administrator,” said Nick Shaheen, MD, MPH, chief of the division of gastroenterology and hepatology. “He has found creative ways to address many operational needs in the division, including a triage system to assure that patients are assigned to endoscopy units most suited to their comorbidities and an urgent care clinic to allow easy access to people most in need of help.  Dr. Dorn has a comprehensive understanding of the changes in US healthcare, and will help situate the department well for what lies ahead.”

Dorn received his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan, his medical degree from the State University of New York at Brooklyn School of Medicine, and his Masters of Public Health and later Masters of Health Care Administration from the UNC Gillings School of Public Health.  He trained in internal medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and gastroenterology at UNC.