Taking Something Great and Making It Even Better
By Joseph E. Safdieh
July 20, 2017
ARTICLE IN BRIEF
Dr. Joseph E. Safdieh, the new editor-in-chief of Neurology Today, shares his goals and vision for the publication.
With this issue of Neurology Today, I feel truly honored to assume the position of editor-in-chief. Neurology Today has a storied pedigree. First established in 2001, it was built on the excellent work of the editors who preceded me: Lewis (Bud) Rowland, MD, FAAN, whom we sadly lost in March, and Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, who stepped down from the field on July 1. Each dedicated countless hours to make this publication what it is today — an award-winning source of groundbreaking and credible news about neurology. Both were luminaries in the field of neurology and AAN presidents. And so I enter this position with a high degree of humility. I hope to continue to meet the high standards that were set before me.
I'd also like to acknowledge and thank the excellent Neurology Today team. This publication could not have been successful without the wonderful work of our associate editors Robert Holloway, MD, FAAN; Kenneth Tyler, MD, FAAN; and Orly Avitzur, MD, FAAN. Each has provided critical guidance and expertise in a multitude of areas, including health services research, clinical and basic neuroscience, and practice management issues.
Many neurologists have told me that Neurology Today is their primary source for clinical and scientific news. As the publications pile up on our desks, it can be an uphill battle to separate the wheat from the chaff when it comes to discerning what is new from what is important to our practice. Toward that end, I remain committed to the Neurology Today mission — to vet, discern, and report news, issues, and trends in the practice and science of neurology that matter in a credible, timely, and balanced way.
What sets Neurology Today apart from other neurology newspapers is the balance we bring to our articles by including expert commentary and critical insights. Importantly, Neurology Today carries the imprimatur of the AAN, an organization that many neurologists entrust with the development of their professional needs in education, science, and practice. Neurology Today will continue to be the trustworthy publication that meets the high standards a reader expects from an AAN publication.
My editorial vision is to ensure that Neurology Today continues to be an indispensable resource of digestible articles that neurologists can access in whatever way suits them best. Neurology Today will continue to cover important topics from medical journals and national meetings. Many of these are the topics your patients will be asking about at their next office visit. We will continue to report clinical advances in neurology, as well as include basic science coverage on important topics that may eventually impact your practice or your thinking. We will also continue to cover important practice issues. And as our field continues to grapple with issues related to burnout, I plan to add new regular sections on wellness and ethics. Our articles will continue to be written by well-trained medical journalists under the watchful eye of Fay Ellis, our able executive editor.
We would like to ensure that neurologists from every generation — whether millennials, generation Xers, or baby boomers — can access the articles in the way that suits them best. Neurology Today will continue to publish a print issue twice a month. However, in order to truly live up to our title, Neurology Today, we will work toward ensuring that articles are available on a more timely, real-time basis through our digital platforms.
We are in the process of initiating a major redesign of the print publication and the website and are using this opportunity to rethink how often we update the content. We will also be working on developing a more streamlined topical collection of articles and introducing new ways to engage our readers. We will raise the profile of our nearly daily Neurology Today news blog and increase opportunities for social media interactivity. We hope to improve the functionality of the Neurology Today app to allow for push notifications of breaking news as well as individualization of content delivery based on pre-defined interests. We would also like to increase our pipeline of short and engaging podcasts to complement our print coverage.
I am excited to be working with a great team of colleagues who will assist me in the day-to-day work of this publication. Dr. Avitzur, editor-in-chief of the AAN patient magazine, Neurology Now, and medical director of Consumer Reports, is staying on as an associate editor. She will focus on practice management issues, wellness, and social media. And as Drs. Holloway and Tyler move on, I have recruited two new associate editors: Barney J. Stern, MD, FAAN, an internationally recognized stroke neurologist, to oversee our clinical neurology coverage, and Deborah Hall, MD, PhD, FAAN, a highly-regarded physician-scientist, movement disorders neurologist, and medical educator, to guide our clinical and translational science coverage. Look for some new names on our editorial board in this issue; they represent expanded and specific subspecialties of neurology, to provide perspective as well as content expertise.
It is a very exciting time to practice neurology. It is also a somewhat overwhelming time! Many of the scientific advances of the past few decades are rapidly reaching the bedside, and it is difficult to find the time to stay abreast of what is really important. It is my sincere hope that Neurology Today will be your go-to resource for what you need to know and when you need to know it — available in the best formats to suit your individual learning style. I look forward to your feedback and would love to hear your ideas!
Dr. Safdieh, who assumed the position of Neurology Today editor-in-chief on July 1, is the Louis and Rachel Rudin Foundation Education Scholar, vice chairman of neurology for education, and associate professor of neurology at Weill Medical College of Cornell University in New York City.