The National Academy of Medicine selected Ruchi M. Fitzgerald, MD, for the class of 2022 NAM Fellowships. Fitzgerald and six other fellows from across the United States were chosen based on their professional qualifications, reputations as scholars, professional accomplishments, and the relevance of their current field expertise to the work of the NAM and the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.
Fitzgerald will collaborate with eminent researchers, policy experts and clinicians from across the nation during the two-year fellowship. She also will help facilitate initiatives convened by the National Academies to provide nonpartisan, scientific and evidence-based guidance to national, state and local policymakers, academic leaders, health care administrators and the public.
Fitzgerald is assistant professor of family and preventive medicine and assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at RUSH Medical College. She also serves as associate director for RUSH’s addiction medicine physician fellowship program. After graduating from University of Michigan Medical College and completing Montana Family Medicine Residency Program, Fitzgerald joined the RUSH as an addiction medicine fellow. She serves as a family medicine and addiction medicine physician at PCC in Oak Park, where she is service chief of inpatient addiction medicine.
Her work has focused on improving care for people affected by substance use disorders, with an emphasis on perinatal and pediatric health. Her scholarly work has focused on addressing stigma, building capacity in primary care for treating opioid use disorder in special populations and implementing evidence-based substance use disorder curricula for teaching the next generation of providers.
Fitzgerald was awarded the James C. Puffer, MD/American Board of Family Medicine Fellowship; other NAM 2022 fellowships were awarded in the areas of nursing, emergency medicine, osteopathic medicine, pharmacy and state health policy. Read more about the recipients. NAM fellows will continue in their primary academic and research posts while engaging part time in the National Academies’ policy work and with study committees related to their professional interests. In addition, a flexible research grant will be awarded to each fellow.
The overall purpose of the NAM Fellowship program is to enable talented, early-career health science scholars to participate actively in the work of the NAM and the National Academies, and to further their careers as future leaders in the field.
“The NAM Fellowship program provides unique experiences for our fellows to address complex challenges [and] provides access to a network of mentors who can provide support to the fellows throughout their careers,” said National Academy of Medicine President Victor J. Dzau. “I am delighted to welcome these exceptional health science scholars to the program.”
The National Academy of Medicine, established in 1970 as the Institute of Medicine, is an independent organization of professionals from diverse fields including health and medicine; the natural, social, and behavioral sciences; and beyond. It serves alongside the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering as an adviser to the nation and the international community.