New department on the block

New department on the block

By Matt Galnor

The fast-growing division of oral and maxillofacial surgery that contributes to the most comprehensive multidisciplinary approach to head and neck cancers in the region is now officially a department of the UF College of Medicine–Jacksonville.

Until now, oral and maxillofacial surgery was one division among nine others in the department of surgery. From an operations standpoint, the department status gives oral and maxillofacial surgery more autonomy and the chair reports directly to the dean, said Tirbod Fattahi, M.D., D.D.S., an associate professor and interim chair of the department.

On the recruiting end, it should help the department become even more attractive to prospective residents and faculty because it shows the weight of the subspecialty on campus, Fattahi said.

In the short-term, Fattahi said the department will work toward increasing the number of fellows and add another new faculty member. He also expects that within a year, the department will have a new location to see patients. Currently, the oral and maxillofacial surgeons see patients at Emerson Medical Plaza and at Shands Jacksonville.

“If we are going to grow, we have to do so beyond these walls,” Fattahi said.