The Editors of CURRENT Medical Diagnosis & Treatment would like to pay their respects to René Salazar, MD, who died unexpectedly in October 2022.
For the previous 15 editions of CMDT, René coauthored Chapter 1, “Disease Prevention & Health Promotion” with Michael Pignone, MD, Chair of the Department of Medicine (DOM) at the Dell Medical School of the University of Texas, Austin. Theirs was a terrific partnership, with René bringing to the chapter a strong emphasis on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in provision of preventive services, and Mike, as a former member of the US Preventive Services Task Force, bringing his knowledge of evidence-based preventive services recommendation formulation. Consider a few examples of how they partnered to update the chapter: the Immunizations section now features vaccines against HBV, herpes zoster, and COVID-19; the STD section features daily preexposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and as-needed post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) medication regimens against HIV, and recommends screening for syphilis among men who have sex with men; the Cancer Screening section now recommends low-dose CT scanning for early detection of lung cancer among older regular smokers, and mammography among women beginning at age 45; and the Smoking, Alcohol, and Drug Use sections feature new medications for the respective at-risk populations.
Rene was also instrumental in developing an educational program at UCSF on unconscious bias that is being implemented widely. It is because of his initiative that CMDT is actively pursuing to remove unconscious bias throughout the text.
The Editors of CMDT concur with the assessments of Drs. Mitch Feldman, UCSF DGIM Chief, Meshell Johnson, Associate Chair for DEI, and Robert Wachter, DOM Chair, who wrote, “René’s passion and generosity made the world of healthcare and graduate medical education better and more diverse. He leaves behind a legacy of the many individuals from underrepresented backgrounds whose careers he inspired and mentored. We are all shocked and saddened by René’s untimely death. He was a treasured colleague and friend; we will miss him dearly.”