UW Health names Ciara Barclay-Buchanan as Chief Medical Officer, University Hospital

Ciara Barclay-Buchanan, MD, stands in front of University Hospital

UW Health recently announced the appointment of Ciara Barclay-Buchanan, MD, as Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for University Hospital in Madison, effective October 1, 2023.

“I am grateful for the opportunity and look forward to working together to provide remarkable healthcare to our patients and community,” Barclay-Buchanan said.

Dr. Barclay-Buchanan has distinguished herself as a leader in emergency department operations and graduate medical education since joining the BerbeeWalsh Department of Emergency Medicine in 2015. Her appointment as CMO marks a significant milestone in the ongoing pursuit of excellence and innovation in health care delivery at University Hospital — which is part of the University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics, #1 hospital system in the state.

“Dr. Barclay-Buchanan has proven to be a collaborative leader within UW Health and beyond, liaising with clinical teams and stakeholders in support of patient care through our emergency departments,” said Aimee Becker, MD, chief clinical officer, UW Health, in a message to providers and staff.

Working in close collaboration with the Chief Operating Officer and Chief Nursing Officer for University Hospital, Dr. Barclay-Buchanan will play a pivotal role in steering the hospital in its focus on health equity; clinician well-being; and the pursuit of better health, improved outcomes, and lower costs. Her responsibilities will extend to overseeing Medical Staff Administration and Graduate Medical Education, further strengthening the institution’s commitment to clinical excellence and education.

Since joining the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health as Associate Residency Program Director for emergency medicine, Dr. Barclay-Buchanan’s dedication and leadership acumen has led to progressive roles within the department, expanding her scope and responsibility. She is currently Associate Professor (CHS) and Vice Chair of Operations, in which she leads the Quality, Operations, and Leadership Team (QOLT) in the pursuit of high-quality, efficient emergency medical care.

Dr. Barclay-Buchanan oversees a diverse team of faculty, fellows, residents, and advanced practice providers at several emergency departments in southeastern Wisconsin, including University Hospital, American Family Children’s Hospital, East Madison Hospital, and the William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital. Dr. Barclay-Buchanan’s ability to collaborate effectively with multidisciplinary teams has consistently elevated the quality of patient care across UW Health’s emergency departments.

Barclay-Buchanan’s medical career has been defined by excellence since the start. She obtained her medical degree from Wayne State University School of Medicine and completed her emergency medicine residency and chief residency at Sinai-Grace Hospital in Detroit. Following her residency, Barclay-Buchanan served in medical student and residency education leadership roles for both Wayne State University and Michigan State University at Sinai-Grace Hospital prior to being recruited by the University of Wisconsin.

Dr. Barclay-Buchanan’s commitment to advancing her field extends beyond the hospital. Throughout her career, she has been actively involved with the Academy for Women in Academic Emergency Medicine and the Council of Emergency Medicine Residency Directors on a national level. As an executive editor for Rosh Review, author of several textbook chapters, and a senior textbook editor, she has made significant contributions to medical education for both learners and practicing physicians.

Her dedication to excellence has also been acknowledged with several prestigious awards, including the Clinical Leadership Physician Excellence Award from UW Health in 2023, the Ripple Award for Leadership & Service from the BerbeeWalsh Department of Emergency Medicine in 2022, and the Recent Alumni Spotlight Award from Wayne State University School of Medicine in 2017.

“Dr. Barclay-Buchanan’s extensive experience and proven track record of improving patient care and leading effective teams, as well as her passion for medical education make her an exceptional fit for this crucial position,” says Manish N. Shah, MD, MPH, professor and chair, BerbeeWalsh Department of Emergency Medicine.

Under her leadership, University Hospital will continue to innovate the high-quality health care it provides to patients and remain a source of hope and healing for the communities it serves.