Accused professors take unpaid leave from admin duties

On Monday, two University health professors being investigated for alleged double employment at Georgia Tech and the University were granted two-month leaves of absence from their administrative duties.

Professors Francois Sainfort and Julie Jacko requested the leave, without pay, through June 27, said Mary Koppel, Academic Health Center spokeswoman.

Sainfort and Jacko, who are husband and wife, wanted time to focus on resolving issues with Georgia Tech, Koppel said.

While both professors will take a break from administrative obligations, thus reducing their salaries, they’ll retain faculty status, she said.

Sainfort is the head of the Division of Health Policy and Management in the School of Public Health. Jacko is the director of the Institute for Health Informatics through the School of Nursing.

“The University is continuing its investigation into the allegations,” Koppel said. “But there remain gaps in what we know.”

The Office of the General Counsel is still getting information from Georgia Tech’s general counsel, she said.

The duo, considered national leaders in the emerging field of health informatics – the collection and analysis of computer-generated health care data – was recruited away from Georgia Tech last year and began working at the University last October.

Georgia Tech officials said Sainfort and Jacko signed employment agreements there last October and January, respectively. The Atlanta school turned its investigation over to the Georgia attorney general’s office.

According to University of Minnesota Board of Regents policy, full-time employment outside the University is prohibited for all employees.