For Charles and Elise Nail, giving back to the UF Department of Surgery was a perfect way to say thank you for the life-saving care Charles received. mr. and mrs. nail

“I owe Dr. Tom Read, Dr. Salvatore Scali, and Dr. Tom Huber my life,” said Charles, following a recent visit back to the department of surgery for a checkup. “We are in a position where we can give and we felt like this was a wonderful way to show our appreciation. We know that education, research and training in these specialty skills require enormous funding. We are hoping to help future doctors obtain the skills they will need to save others.”

Part of Charles’ successful treatment stemmed from the division of vascular surgery and endovascular therapy’s busy caseload. The vascular services are a nationally high-volume aortic center, granting vascular surgeons an exceptional opportunity to grow their skillset due to the sheer number of aortic procedures seen throughout the year.

“Our division continues to grow,” said Dr. Salvatore Scali, associate professor and program director of the UF vascular surgery fellowship. “We have excellent relationships with different care teams, and together we manage complex patients that require very unique solutions.”

Dr. Scali, who was the on-call physician when Charles arrived at UF Health, emphasizes the way in which the division’s expertise contributes to their primary goal: delivering innovative, high-quality care that puts the needs of the patient first.

“Drs. Read, Huber and I came together to recognize that Charles had a meaningful life to live, and it was our privilege and responsibility to develop a plan of care that ensured he realize the full potential of that life,” Dr. Scali said.

Since July of 2020, the Nails have made $685,000 in gifts to support a research coordinator for Dr. Read and start a fund to expand the fellowship training complement under the guidance of Drs. Huber and Scali.

“Currently, the number of open aortic operations performed across the country continues to decline due to the adoption of endovascular therapies which is creating a shortfall in the number of trainees qualified to safely perform these procedures. However, UF Health maintains a unique practice niche that offers an appropriate balance of both high-volume complex open and endovascular surgery, making our fellowship uniquely qualified to counteract these national trends,” Scali said.

This gift comes at a critical time for the Department of Surgery as UF Health begins to recuperate from the economic challenges imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Knowing they are helping the department during this moment of need made the gift extra special, said Elise.

“We really are glad to do it,” Elise said. “I truly hope others join us. Not only are we saying thank you, we are making a difference for the University and for their future patients.”

In addition to working with resident alumni, former fellows and former faculty, the UF College of Medicine Office of Development has placed a greater emphasis in working with a grateful patient population interested in making a difference through philanthropy.

Making a gift through your will or trust

Are you interested in leaving the UF Department of Surgery in your will or living trust?

You may also want the flexibility to change your will in the event that life circumstances change. Good news: You can do both. In as little as one sentence, you can complete your gift. This type of donation helps ensure that we continue our mission for years to come. For more information on how to do this, please contact Ted Kruljac, Senior Director of Development at (352) 538-6267