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University of Iowa News Release

Release: Feb. 21, 2003

Harper to Lead UI Center for Disabilities and Development

Dennis Harper, Ph.D., a specialist in pediatric psychology, has agreed to serve as director of the Division of Developmental Disabilities and clinical director of the Center for Disabilities and Development at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

Frank Morriss Jr., M.D., professor and head of the UI department of pediatrics and medical director of Children's Hospital of Iowa at UI Hospitals and Clinics, announced Harper's appointments to those posts. "Dr. Harper has served as interim director of the division for several months and has overseen a number of important grant and clinical service initiatives," Morriss said. "I am very pleased that he has agreed to serve in these important roles."

Harper completed his graduate education at the UI and served his residency in pediatric psychology at UI Hospitals and Clinics. He joined the UI faculty in 1972 and is now a professor of pediatrics and education. He is board certified in pediatric psychology, with clinical expertise in pediatric chronic disease, adjustment problems, headaches in children, psychosomatic complaints in children, and pediatric and adolescent psychology.

The Division of Developmental Disabilities serves infants, children and young adults with particularly complex physical, intellectual, learning adjustment and medical disorders, such as cerebral palsy, mental retardation or spina bifida. Diagnostic and treatment services are provided in outpatient clinics and an eight-bed inpatient unit to meet the needs of patients who require relatively short-term admissions.

The Center of Disabilities and Development, formerly known as University Hospitals School when it opened its doors in 1948, is Iowa's premier center for people with disabilities and special needs. The center serves as a resource for the citizens of Iowa, as well as residents of neighboring states and beyond. The center's specialists provide medical care and related services, training, research, information sharing and services that improve people's quality of life at home, work and school.

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the University of Iowa Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine and UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide. Visit UI Health Care online at

STORY SOURCE: Joint Office for Planning, Marketing and Communications, University of Iowa Health Care, 200 Hawkins Drive, Room 8798 JPP, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1009

CONTACT: Tom Moore, 319-356-3945, Writer: Tom Moore