Tamsen Bassford, MD

Sonoran UCEDD
1450 N Cherry Ave
PO Box 245052
Tucson, AZ 85724
Phone: 520-626-7864
Email: bassford@email.arizona.edu
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Last Updated: March 04, 2016

Tamsen Bassford

Primary Activity Coordinators: Medical Director
Discipline Coordinators: Medicine
Project/Program/Clinic Contacts: Medical Home Director
Discipline(s): Medicine-General
Family Medicine
AUCD Council Membership: No Council Membership


Dr. Bassford was born and raised in Reading, Pennsylvania. She graduated from Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania with a degree in Biology and from the University of Southern California with a degree in Medicine. She completed her Family Practice Residency at the Arizona Health Sciences Center, The University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona. Dr. Bassford is the Chair of the Department of Family and Community Medicine. She is an Associate Professor of Clinical Family Medicine and Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology.

Prior to her current position, she served as Associate Dean for Student Affairs at the COM. In that role, she worked closely with the university's Disability Resource Center around issues of support to medical students with disabilities, and helped develop the COM's policies regarding student accessibility. She has served as the co-director of the COM's two year course in social and behavioral sciences, which provides didactic and experiential teaching in human development and developmental disabilities. She is a member of the Society for Teachers of Family Medicine Interest Group on Developmental Disabilities.

Dr. Bassford served as the primary care physician for adults with developmental disabilities living at the Arizona Training Program at Tucson. While there, she initiated the development of a course in healthy sexuality for her patients, and worked with a community based group of professionals and families to address the needs of aging caregivers of persons with disabilities. As opportunities and supports for community based living expanded, Dr Bassford assisted with the transition of her patients to residential settings more integrated into the community. She has continued to serve as the family physician for many adults with developmental disabilities, and receives patient referral statewide.

During her time as department head, Dr Bassford has worked to expand the departments', services to people with disabilities and their families, and to more fully integrate the department's activities in these areas into its teaching and research missions. In continued close collaboration with the Arizona State Division of Developmental Disabilities, she established DFCM's participation in the ICAT and worked with departmental faculty to develop a service-learning experience in disabilities for medical students at the departments Artworks program, and . In 2003 Dr. Bassford, with DDD, established the ROSA award, to recognize local health care professionals who provide exemplary care to people with developmental disabilities.

She is the Principal Investigator for the Arizona site of the Women's Health Initiative, a randomized clinical trial of three preventive interventions in postmenopausal women, a grant awarded by the National Heart, Lung, & Blood Institute (NHLBI). Dr. Bassford is also the Principal Investigator for a cancer prevention education in medical curriculum grant awarded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). She developed the Mensajeras de Salud Project, a lay health education project directed at breast and cervical cancer in Hispanic women, which has operated for ten years in Tucson. She has served on the Mammography Advisory Panel of the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research, the FDA Mammography Advisory Committee, and the National Institute of Health (NIH) Consensus Panel on Osteoporosis.