The VF Welcomes Dr. Elizabeth J. Brant to the Board of Directors
As both a vasculitis patient and healthcare provider, Elizabeth J. Brant, MD, brings a unique perspective to the Vasculitis Foundation’s (VF’s) Board of Directors. Currently, Dr. Brant is a nephrologist and Assistant Professor of Medicine, Geisel School of Medicine, at Dartmouth Health. She joined the VF’s Board of Directors in April 2022.
When asked why she wanted to join the board, Dr. Brant said that it was due in part to the VCRC-VF Fellowship—the mentored training program for physician investigators who have a strong interest in vasculitis and wish to pursue specialized training. “I personally benefited from being a VF fellow,” Dr. Brant said, “and the experience I gained through those additional two years of training and research have been invaluable in giving me confidence to manage patients on my own.”
“The research being funded [through the fellowship program] explores pathogenesis of disease, a goal of more and better treatment options, and even research into patients’ experience of disease,” Dr. Brant added, “from both a physical health point of view, but also quality of life and mental health point of view.”
In addition, Dr. Brant trained at the University of North Carolina/Chapel Hill under Ronald Falk, MD, and Patrick Nachman, MD, and her general nephrology fellowships also afforded her significant experience in managing vasculitis patients.
After attending her first board meeting in May, Dr. Brant was struck by the commitment, level of knowledge in various areas of expertise, generosity, and respect with which the members acted. “The VF is an extraordinary organization, largely thanks to Joyce [Kullman] being at the helm,” she explained. “Everything the VF does is in service to patients, and there is a wealth of patient advocacy and education in varying formats.”
Prior to joining the board, Dr. Brant reviewed grants for the VF, and she anticipates that work to continue. “I think I’m best equipped to engage in educational initiatives,” she said. “I have a fairly unique perspective from which to think about what approaches might be helpful and accessible to patients, as I’m both a provider and a patient.”
As a provider, Dr. Brant is a specialist/consultant who receives referrals from primary care providers and specialists in other areas. “I’d like to find a way to help these practitioners, who are typically the first point of contact for patients, gain greater awareness of vasculitis in its various forms, understand how to recognize it, and know how best to get the next level of care in an expedited manner to optimize outcomes for the patients.”