February 2020


Marijuana Use During Pregnancy Increasingly Common, Linked to Stressful Life Events

A new study, led by FCM researcher Alicia Allen, PhD, MPH, found that women who experienced more stressful life events in the year before childbirth, had greater odds of marijuana use before and during pregnancy. The study explored the connection between stressful life events and marijuana use in women—before, during and after pregnancy.

One finding that surprised the research team was that self-reported marijuana use during pregnancy increased about 35% between 2011 to 2016—from approximately 4.2% to 6.4%. “It’s possible that the legalization of marijuana use and increases in social acceptability may contribute to increased marijuana use during pregnancy,” Dr. Allen said. 


FCM researcher Dr. Susan Schembre and her team are recruiting individuals with Type 2 diabetes to provide feedback on a new mobile app designed to help manage diabetes. The study seeks to develop a new dietary assessment and intervention approach that, for the first time, integrates continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) data with a mobile diet tracker to automate personalized dietary guidance. 



Congratulations to Angela Puthenveetil MD, who recently completed the Family Medicine Residential Fellowship in Integrative Medicine Program, which includes completing the UArizona Andrew Weil Center for Integrative Medicine program as well.

Congratulations to Alicia Allen, PhD, MPH, assistant professor, who was awarded $1,500 from the Commission on the Status of Women to create a hybrid online-in-person training with life coach Laurie Cape, MAE, LPCC (an experienced counselor, life coach, educator and facilitator). Together, Dr. Allen and Laurie will create a course for women in academia that focuses on taking a strengths-based approach to create sustainable plans that support long-term personal-professional life goals. Stay tuned for more details!

Congratulations to Angela Puthenveetil MD, who was promoted to program director for the Family Medicine Residential Fellowship in Integrative Medicine Program.

Accolades to Pamela Wagner, center support for RISE Health & Wellness Center's Camp Wellness and show coordinator for UA's On Our Own Time Art Exhibit, who was quoted in The Daily Wildcat article, Artists showcase their unique visions at the "On Our Own Time" art exhibit. She was also quoted in a Lo Que Pasa article about the event, as well.
Kudos to Hailey Koellisch (daughter of Valerie Koellisch, FCM grants & contracts accountant), who received an "Honorable Mention" and won the "People's Choice" award for her compelling photograph, "Bruises Heal, Words Scar the Soul," at the annual On Our Own Time Art Exhibit.
FCM was well represented at the annual ADFM Conference that took place Feb. 12-15 in New Orleans. Dept. Chair Myra Muramoto, MD, MPH, presented at the LEADS Fellowship Workshop on Wednesday. Additional faculty who attended: Ann Mathias, DO, associate chief of clinical affairs; Karyn Kolman, MD, vice chair for education; and Alicia Allen, PhD, MPH, assistant professor. 
The Alvernon Family Medicine Residency program joined the Twitterverse. Follow them at



Faculty, Residents and Staff Participate in "Pathways to Success" Health Careers Fair 

FCM faculty, staff and residents participated in “A Pathway to Success” health careers fair at South Campus on Feb. 12. Approximately 120 high school students participated in the event, where they learned about many job options in the health professions. Vicky Murrain, DO, associate professor and assistant dean of GME, oversaw the event; Bethany Bruzzi, DO, assistant professor, presented one of the scholarships. South Campus residents who participated were: Patricia Wu, MD, and Rachel Bruckman, MD, ran the labor and delivery booth, and Marisela Mariscal, MD, was one of the speakers. Lauren Wright, senior program coordinator, worked on the event's planning committee. Pictured here: Dr. Bruzzi (left) with a student who received a scholarship.


Sonoran UCEDD Faculty and Staff Volunteer at Special Olympics Event

On Feb. 1, Tammie Bassford, MD, associate professor, and Valerie Mata, medical home coordinator with the Sonoran UCEDD, volunteered at the Healthy Athletes event, which is part of the Special Olympics Coronado Area Competition.Valerie provided health information and Dr. Bassford oversaw the event, which took place at Sporting Chance Gym.


Alvernon Residency Program's 45th Anniversary Reunion 
Student Union Memorial Center |

Sonoran UCEDD: Adulting: What it Means to Me and My Future
UAHS Health Sciences Innovation Building (HSIB) |

Camp Wellness: Tucson Palooza 2020 
Jacome Plaza |


Marijuana Use During Pregnancy Increasingly Common, Linked to Stressful Life Events
UANews, 2/26/2020
Dr. Laura Micek-Galinat Joins UA and Banner
Inside Tucson Business, 2/14/2020


  • Jeffrey Javier, marketing specialist, joined Sonoran UCEDD, Feb. 24
  • Guadalupe Lugo, research nurse, joined Camp Wellness, Feb. 10
  • Alexa Roy, graduate student assistant (will work with Karen Lutrick, PhD), began Feb. 24
  • Wendy Warren, community outreach, joined Sonoran UCEDD, Feb. 24
Student workers: 
  • NARTCOrlando Trevino, Daja Torres and Liza Granger, Feb. 17; Ty Figueroa, Jan. 27
  • Sonoran UCEDDJolene Santos, Feb. 10


Jabez John, MD, 2nd-Year Resident, South Campus Family Medicine Residency Program

Why did you choose South Campus Family Medicine Residency? I chose this residency because I liked the environment I encountered during my interview. The attendings and fellow residents had a very good relationship and I saw myself being a good fit in this resident culture.
What do you like most about Tucson? It reminds me of my hometown Albuquerque and it has good food options.
Jeiran Javaherian, DO, 2rd-Year Resident, Alvernon Family Medicine Residency Program

Why did you choose Alvernon Family Medicine Residency? I did my away rotation with the University of Arizona Family Medicine, and loved the interaction and support among the residents and faculty. I also love the programs' emphasis on integrative medicine.
What is your favorite thing about living in Tucson? Trying different foods, hiking, Tucson sunsets.
What are your interests or hobbies outside of medicine? Traveling, running, yoga, playing piano
What are your professional interests within medicine? Integrative medicine, working with underserved populations, global medicine


Ivo Abraham, PhD Alicia M. Allen, PhD, MPH Francine C. Gachupin, PhD, MPH Patricia Lebensohn, MD Mari A. Ricker, MD Barry D. Weiss, MD

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UA Department of Family and Community Medicine · 655 N. Alvernon Way, Ste. 228 · Tucson, AZ 85711 · USA

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