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Muñoz named to key VHVI leadership role

Dec. 17, 2020, 9:55 AM


by Matt Batcheldor

Daniel Muñoz, MD, MPA, associate professor of Medicine, has been named the new executive medical director of the Patient Care Center (PCC) at Vanderbilt Heart and Vascular Institute (VHVI), effective Jan. 1, 2021.

Daniel Munoz, MD, MPA

Muñoz, co-interim director of the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, said the VHVI PCC is the overarching structure for a deep collaboration between Cardiology, Cardiac Surgery and Vascular Surgery.

“An increasing amount of what we do these days in cardiovascular medicine is multidisciplinary,” Muñoz said. “It’s a natural wedding and alliance among those three major service lines, with mission-critical leadership from my surgical colleagues, Dr. Ashish Shah (professor and chair of Cardiac Surgery) and Dr. Thomas Naslund (chief of the Division of Vascular Surgery and professor of Surgery). The VHVI PCC aims to define strategic directions for the clinical care of patients with cardiovascular disease, to speak with one voice as cardiovascular specialists.”

VUMC began to create PCCs in 1997 to support greater coordination between corresponding care teams and to embed patient-centered care in the structure and day-to-day operation of the Medical Center’s clinical enterprise.

While centered at VUMC’s main campus, the VHVI PCC’s mission extends to regional clinics and, increasingly, new hospital based-partnerships, Muñoz said.

“As a heart institute, we are growing our focus to think of ourselves as a network,” he said, “and how we can really make sure that the network operates on all cylinders and provides and extends the very best cardiovascular care not just here on campus but here in Middle Tennessee and beyond.”

“I am delighted that Dan will be taking on this new role,” said Kimryn Rathmell, MD, PhD, Hugh J. Morgan Professor of Medicine and chair of the department. “This is an exciting time for the growth of the cardiovascular programs at Vanderbilt, and his perspective, thoughtfulness and creativity will be ideal for the role.”

Muñoz graduated from Princeton University with a bachelor’s degree in economics.

He went on to receive his medical degree from Johns Hopkins University and his Master in Public Administration from Harvard University in 2005. He continued to serve in the Johns Hopkins Hospital and Health System, where he completed his residency in 2008, chief residency in 2010 and cardiology fellowship in 2011.

After completing a research fellowship at Duke University, he came to Vanderbilt for further subspecialty training, after which he joined the faculty in 2013.

Muñoz credited the spirit of partnership and mentorship in the cardiology community at Vanderbilt, including former director of the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine Thomas Wang, MD; current Interim Division Chief Dan Roden, MD; former chair of the Department of Medicine Nancy Brown, MD; current chair Kimryn Rathmell, MD, PhD; and Walter Clair, MD, MPH, professor of Medicine and executive medical director of the Vanderbilt Heart and Vascular Institute (VHVI) since 2015.

“This is a team sport and what I appreciate most about working at Vanderbilt is that there is a real sense of camaraderie and community at every level, including the leadership level,” Muñoz said. “Dr. Clair is wrapping up what has been a tremendously exciting and successful tenure in the executive medical director position. I have benefited enormously from his selfless mentorship and his guidance in preparation for this transition.”

Clair will be directing diversity and inclusion activities of the Department of Medicine as the inaugural vice chair of Diversity and Inclusion.

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