Dear Colleagues,

I am still celebrating with Mizzou fans after watching an historic win in women's basketball between Mizzou and the University of South Carolina on Dec. 30. I watched the game with members of our cardiovascular team as the Tigers beat the No. 1-ranked Gamecocks in a thrilling overtime.

While time with friends and family can be great sources of energy and inspiration as we begin the new year, I was not necessarily expecting to find personal inspiration at the basketball game. With only eight players suited up, the Tigers were playing with a shorthanded roster. Six players — including the team's top scorer and rebounder — were out due to illness or injury. Mizzou won with an incredible effort and a lot of grit and tenacity. The Tigers did not give up and gave it their all as they defeated the nation's top-ranked team for the first time in team history.

Mizzou Women's Basketball team
Congratulations to the Mizzou women's basketball team.

To me, this was a great analogy to how our teams at MU Health Care and the MU School of Medicine persevere. We are almost two years into the pandemic and COVID-19 numbers in our community are on the rise. Like the Tigers during the game, one of our biggest hurdles is a shortage of people power. Though we need more people in our workforce, we are still doing everything we can for our patients. Nurses and other staff are working extra shifts, and I know many are feeling the strain of only having few days off work. 

And yet, like the MU women's basketball team, we do not give up; we do the extra shifts that are needed. We know how important each and every one of us is in providing the highest level of care to Missourians not only in our region, but across the state and beyond. Our hospitals and clinics are very busy and demand for our services is very high. You continue to deliver outstanding care every hour of every day. You do not give up and you are here to serve.

MU women’s basketball game group photo
Pictured, from left to right: Jenna Fleming, clinical pharmacy specialist; Amy Begemann, director of cardiovascular and neurosciences for MU Health Care; Brooke Booska, cardiovascular nurse navigator; Dr. Trent Bickel, one of our cardiology fellows; Dr. Brian Bostick, one of our cardiology leaders; Jackie Ryan, cardiovascular service line specialist; Kaitlyn Maddex, cardiovascular nurse navigator; Dr. Richard Barohn; Brenda Robinson, senior office support assistant; Douglas Obogo, performance improvement professional; and Dr. Erik Ensrud, neurologist.


Thank you to ALL across our health system who are working so very hard every day to fulfill our promise to deliver health care, even in a pandemic and even if we could use a few more team members.

Go Tigers!


Rick Barohn, MD

Executive Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs
University of Missouri