WASHINGTON, July 5, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Association of Academic Health Centers (AAHC) is pleased to announce the appointment of Nicholas Fisk, MBBS, PhD, MBA, deputy vice-chancellor of UNSW Australia, as chair of its international division's Steering Committee. As chair of the Association of Academic Health Centers International (AAHCI) Steering Committee, Dr. Fisk will also assume a seat on the parent AAHC board.

"This is an exciting time for our association, and we welcome Dr. Fisk with his extensive international perspective to our ongoing programs," said Dr. Steven A. Wartman, AAHC president and CEO. "As chair of the AAHCI Steering Committee, and as an AAHC board member, Dr. Fisk will bring expertise and critical perspective to our growing domestic and international programs, ensuring that they are both complementary and synergistic, while ultimately helping to increase the impact and profile of academic health centers worldwide."

A strong focus of the association is to work closely with member institutions to elaborate best practices while fostering collaboration in biomedical and clinical research, health professions education, and patient care. An integral initiative in this regard is the groundbreaking Aligned Institutional Mission (AIM) Program. The AIM Program, planned to be rolled out for application by academic health centers worldwide, focuses on optimizing the alignment among the academic health center's three key mission: education, research, and patient care/population health. "This innovative, global program is designed to assist these vital institutions in meeting the needs of their communities and nations in the challenging and exciting context of 21st century medicine," said Wartman, adding "we look forward to Dr. Fisk's experience and knowledge in assisting with the AIM Program's progress as well as with our many outreach initiatives."

Dr. Fisk joined UNSW in 2016 after serving as the executive dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University of Queensland in Australia. Dr. Fisk is a leading authority in the fields of developmental biology and maternal-fetal medicine and is the author of more than 400 publications. He practices as a senior specialist at the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital and leads a research group on placental stem cell applications. He currently chairs the Group of Eight Deans of Medicine committee and is a visiting professor at the National University of Singapore. He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences and a past Council member of the Queensland Institute of Medical Research.

AAHC is a non-profit association dedicated to advancing health and well-being through the vigorous leadership of academic health centers.

Angela Mills