Assistant Professor, Anesthesiology
Anesthesiology Director of Critical Care Medicine
Dr. Mark Bazzell is on a roll. Growing up in Kentucky, he traveled with his parents and worked in the governor’s mansion as event coordinator, being named a ‘Kentucky Colonel’ and meeting the Queen of England. His interests turned to medicine, and he became a doctor specializing in anesthesiology and critical care, all the while pursuing a love of cars, racing and a glamorous wife, also an anesthesiologist, Dr. Susie Bazzell. The two met at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota and moved to Tucson in 2005, joining the Department of Anesthesiology at UAMC in 2010.
In his off-hours, Mark races his Porsche at tracks in Wilcox, and Las Vegas, and tends to the couple’s 3-dog hacienda near Vail. Drs Mark and Susie Bazzell are also regular trackside physicians – “pit docs” - at the annual Formula One Grand Prix of Canada in Montreal. On the job, Mark gravitated to Intensive Care, and after a two year effort, established a fellowship in Critical Care Medicine, the first in the state of Arizona. Mark also received a coveted “Teacher of the Year” award from graduating anesthesiology residents in early June at a banquet at Skyline Country Club, and almost simultaneously, UAMC’s “Caregiver of the Month” award.
Mark’s first Fellow in the new program will be Dr. Ryan Matika, currently a UAMC faculty attending anesthesiologist, and the other recent “Teacher of the Year” recipient. Dr. Matika was on duty with resident physicians Kirk Bowden and Steve Howell the fateful day of January 8, 2011, first responders in the emergency department, and then surgical operating rooms caring for Congresswoman Giffords and other victims of the tragedy who reached the hospital, all of whom survived. Backup soon arrived, but it was Matika who held the fort, saved the day and masterminded logistics. Now he will resume fellowship training under Drs. Mark Bazzell, Charles Otto, Hugo Rocha and other intensivists. Mark oversaw Giffords’ care, and the others in the ICU, and was among those who met President Obama when he visited. Anesthesiologists bring unique skills to Critical Care medicine, and the new fellowship will be fertile ground, providing excellent care and training.
Here’s to the Kentucky colonel, racecar driver, physician, “pit-doc”, teacher of the year, and caregiver of the month who’s met a Queen and a President, cared for a congresswoman (among many, many others), romanced a beauty, and started a fellowship. Congratulations Mark!