The University of Houston has named Dr. Stephen J. Spann founding dean of the UH College of Medicine. A seasoned physician, health care administrator and medical educator who holds both an M.D. and M.B.A., Spann was appointed planning dean for the college in fall 2015. Since then, he has shaped an academically desirable and financially feasible plan for the new college that will complement the current medical landscape in Houston and Texas.
Spann’s vision for the College of Medicine focuses on preparing primary care doctors to practice in underserved urban and rural communities to ultimately improve health outcomes in Houston and across Texas.
“Dr. Spann’s many years of training physicians and practicing in areas with health disparities uniquely positions us to accommodate the needs of Houston’s most underserved communities,” said Renu Khator, president of the University of Houston. "He is as passionate about closing the health care gap as our university is about supporting our city’s most critical needs. I cannot think of a person with clinical and business expertise more qualified to lead."
"This is an important project to the Houston area and Dr. Spann is the person we want creating the model and building it. Too many people don’t have access to proper care and that’s not just a health problem, it puts a strain on our economy and makes this a less attractive place to create jobs," said Tilman Fertitta, chairman of the UH System Board of Regents.
Spann graduated from Baylor College of Medicine and completed a residency in family medicine at Duke University Medical Center. He began his career as a family physician in rural Arkansas and North Carolina, embracing the challenge of providing quality care in communities with a shortage of physicians and poor access to health care.