The worst of times, the best of times

Fred Sanfilippo

Fred Sanfilippo, MD, PhD

No matter whom you talk to, it's the topic on everyone's mind: the economy. With the stock market spiraling down and unemployment shooting up, the country is facing an economic downturn of historic proportions. Many have characterized the current state of national and international affairs as a crisis, but I think it's probably more appropriate to view the situation as the beginning of a major socio-economic climate change.

All of us have lived through major national and international crises — from the Great Depression to World War II, from Vietnam to 9/11 — and significant social and economic changes have resulted from those critical events. They have affected our society and personal lives, but time and again, we've survived, often emerging stronger as a result. Unfortunately, the worst part of such periods of change is at the beginning, when we just don't know how things will turn out. We are at such a point now — in the world, in the country, in Atlanta, and certainly at Emory and the Woodruff Health Sciences Center.

That's why it is critical now more than ever that we shepherd our resources wisely and effectively. That means ensuring that our people — the most valuable of all resources — as well as our spaces, funds, and programs are employed in a way that meets the principles of best use across all our units, aligning resources with uses and building in transparency. In this issue of Emory Health, you'll see highlights of the many ways in which we are making the most of our resources to continue providing extraordinary advances in research, education, and patient care.

In so many ways, one could consider the current environment as the worst of times. But I hope as you read this issue, you’ll feel as I do — that this is also the best of times, a time when we’re fine-tuning our focus and strategically channeling our resources to ensure maximum progress toward our lifesaving and life-affirming missions.

Thanks, as always, to you — our faculty, staff, students, alumni, and community supporters — for your continued leadership and friendship as we work toward transforming health and healing... together.


Fred Sanfilippo, MD, PhD
Executive Vice President for Health Affairs

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