Jayant Acharya
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Acharya named Neurology chair and co-director of SIU Neuroscience Institute

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Jayant Acharya, MD, DM, has been named the new chair of the Department of Neurology and co-executive director of the Neuroscience Institute at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine.

Acharya joins SIU from Penn State College of Medicine, where he was a tenured professor of neurology, director of the Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, chief of the Division of Epilepsy and director of the EEG Lab and Epilepsy Monitoring Unit. He previously held faculty positions at St. Louis University School of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and M.S. Ramaiah Medical College in Bengaluru, India.

SIU Medicine’s Neuroscience Institute combines the Departments of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry into a single-site outpatient clinical care center staffed by more than 50 neuroscience providers. It cares for patients with a range of disorders including stroke, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Lou Gehrig’s disease, schizophrenia, anxiety and depression.

Acharya’s clinical and research interests include the management of patients with neurological disorders, and he specializes in the clinical assessment, diagnostic procedures and treatments for epilepsy. He will be a member of the team of skilled physicians, nurses and other health care professionals providing medical, surgical and neurostimulation therapies for people with epilepsy. He will also be involved in a variety of procedures including routine and ambulatory EEG, continuous EEG, and noninvasive and invasive video-EEG monitoring, as well as detailed presurgical evaluation for patients undergoing epilepsy surgery.

“We are fortunate to have Dr. Acharya adding his wealth of experience to our institutional leadership,” said Jerry Kruse, MD, MSPH, dean and provost of SIU School of Medicine. “He has been creative in developing and growing programs in his previous positions, and we welcome his ideas and expertise to expand our medical and surgical evaluations and treatments.”

Acharya has received many research and teaching awards, the most notable of which is the Distinguished Educator Award at Penn State College of Medicine, given for exceptional contributions to the education mission and a scholarly approach to teaching and leadership. He is also a prolific author and serves on the editorial boards of prestigious journals in his field. He is actively engaged in service to the community and is a member of several regional, national and international professional organizations and committees.

He completed medical training and an internal medicine residency at the B. J. Medical College of Pune, India, followed by a residency in neurology leading to his DM degree at the National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences at Bengaluru University, India. He later completed a fellowship in clinical neurophysiology and epilepsy at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation and another neurology residency at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center.

“It is an honor and privilege to guide the neurology and neuroscience teams at SIU,” said Acharya. “I plan to harness the intelligence, creativity and commitment of our faculty, staff and trainees using a collaborative, relationship-centered leadership approach to help SIU medicine meet its vision of improving health for everyone in our community and beyond.”

Vinita, his wife of more than 28 years, is also an academic neurologist, epileptologist and award-winning educator, and his two sons are studying in college. His hobbies and interests embrace art, music, philosophy and literature, including reading and creative writing. A firm believer in the concept of healthy body, healthy mind, he plays a variety of sports, exercises regularly, enjoys outdoor activities, and practices mindfulness and meditation.

Established in 1970, SIU School of Medicine’s mission is to optimize the health of the people of central and southern Illinois through education, patient care, research and service to the community. SIU Medicine, the health care practice of the school of medicine, includes clinics and offices with more than 300 providers caring for patients throughout the region.

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