Where Caring Begins and Outcomes Make the Difference



What About the Professor?

                                                  IS THERE A PROFESSOR IN THE HOUSE?

By R. Shea

Dr. Pierre Atallah has been promoted to the rank of Clinical Professor by Wayne State University School of Medicine effective January 2011.   In her letter of announcement Valerie M.  Parisi, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A, Dean of the Medical School, stated, “This recognition is well deserved!”  Dr. Atallah teaches physicians and medical students at WSU, and has been doing so regularly for over 35 years. In addition to his teaching, Dr. Atallah is, in the words of John M. Flack, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.H.A. Professor and Chair of the Department of Internal Medicine at WSU, “internationally recognized in his area of expertise.”

The road to becoming a Clinical Professor is lengthy and complex. It is not a matter of seniority, automatic ascendency through the ranks or length of service. There are no guarantees of ever achieving this status and many accomplished clinical associate professors never attain this recognition.

Qualifications include specialty board certifications, publications in peer reviewed medical literature, recommendations from academic leaders in the field, a history of medical research and of teaching academic medicine.

Dr. Atallah lecturing on cardiac CT angiography at Green Hall, School of Medicine

The School of Medicine is committed to teaching undergraduate medical students, post-graduate medical students, graduate students in the medical sciences, physicians and other health care providers.

Many requirements must be fulfilled before one may be considered for professorship. First among them is the recommendation of a number of highly respected physician academicians, nationally recognized, who know the quality of the physician’s work and who know the applicant on a professional level.

Before anyone may be considered for a Professorship in Medicine at WSU, it is necessary to exhibit an ongoing commitment of service to the goals of the institution. In Dr. Atallah’s case, this commitment has been demonstrated in a number of ways. 


Dr. Atallah began his teaching career with Wayne State University School of Medicine in 1976.  As a Clinical Instructor he taught physicians specializing in cardiology (known as “cardiac fellows”) how to perform highly intricate and delicate invasive cardiac procedures in the Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory.  This was, and by some accounts still is, the gold standard in diagnosing cardiac disease. For this work he was elevated in 1988 to the rank of Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, a position he held for a period of ten years.  In 1998 he was promoted to Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Cardiology. After thirteen fruitful years in that position he has been granted the title of Clinical Professor.

For 36 years, Dr. Atallah has been actively participating in the training of physicians within the WSU School of Medicine.  Cardiac fellows have been taught how to perform cardiac catheterizations and pacing in the Catheterization Laboratory at Harper Hospital. Included with this was teaching the intricacies of blood flow monitoring, known as hemodynamics, using medical devises.  In recent years Dr. Atallah introduced teaching the use of Coronary CT Angiography for cardiac fellows and emergency room physicians.

In addition to training cardiac fellows, emergency room physicians were trained in the indications and uses for CT Angiography in the Hospital Emergency Center. Dr. Atallah implemented the Coronary CT Angiography 24/7 rapid response system, at DMC’s Harper University and Receiving Hospitals. Armed with the assistance of the latest technology, he initiated, supervised and operated this program, singlehandedly, for over two years.

Dr. Atallah’s latest contribution to medical education is taking place at his own medical facility in downtown Rochester, the Rochester Medical Center. There, he is educating physicians in the WSU program in cardiology in the use of Cardiac and Coronary CT Angiography.

Dr. Atallah is the first physician in the State of Michigan, and one of the first in the country, to introduce Computed Tomography Angiography. Always eager to share his knowledge, he teaches an ongoing program of physician training at his Rochester Medical Center, Diagnostic and Specialty Center. Here he trains, not only WSU physicians, but physicians from all over the United States, Europe and the World.

Atallah’s program is endorsed by the Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography to provide Level I, Level II and Level III training to those physicians who are already board certified cardiologists and radiologists. This training fulfills educational components required for Cardiovascular CT Board Certification. Those who achieve Level III become eligible to direct CT Laboratories.

Dr. Atallah is one of the original Founding Members of this group. He is a Fellow of the Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography, and is Board Certified in Cardiovascular CT Angiography.

So yes! There is a professor in the house, and a well seasoned one at that.


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