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    Morehouse School of Medicine Physician Wins National AAMC Award

    Dr. Yolanda Wimberly Becomes First from School to Receive Humanism in Medicine Prize

    Morehouse School of Medicine Physician Wins National AAMC Award

    Atlanta — Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM) pediatrician Yolanda Wimberly, M.D. has been named the American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC) 2008 Humanism in Medicine Award recipient. Wimberly becomes the first MSM physician to receive this mark of distinction.

    The award, sponsored by the Pfizer Medical Humanities Initiative, honors a medical school faculty physician who is a caring and compassionate mentor and a practitioner of patient-centered care.The honor will be bestowed Nov. 1, 2008 at the AAMC Annual Meeting in San Antonio, Texas.Wimberly is an assistant professor of clinical pediatrics and program director of the Center of Excellence for Sexual Health - the first such center in the nation.

    As a physician, activist, mentor, and educator, Wimberly — a nationally recognized adolescent health specialist — consistently demonstrates how communication is the art of medicine. Long regarded as a champion for the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), Wimberly has earned the high regard of parents, guardians, and also her students and department chairs.

    "Dr. Wimberly exemplifies humanism through her passion for teaching and learning. She epitomizes the professional values we seek to instill in our students and residents that are embodied in the mission of Morehouse School of Medicine," said Professor and Chair of the MSM Department of Pediatrics Frances J. Dunston, M.D., M.P.H.

    Wimberly created new community service opportunities soon after arriving at MSM.

    By establishing adolescent clinics at existing health systems, like Grady Health System and Clark Atlanta University, she enhanced MSM's curriculum, increasing the time students spend in clinics during the pediatrics and obstetrics/gynecology clerkships. Coworkers observe, "What other physicians may see as an awkward situation, such as telling a young woman she has an STD, Dr. Wimberly uses as an educational experience."

    She also serves the Fulton County (Ga.) Department of Health and Wellness STD Clinic and DeKalb County's (Ga.) Teen Health Center each month caring for patients and educating the young physicians who treat them. In addition, as a faculty trainer for Physicians for Reproductive Choice, a group advocating medical knowledge, access to quality care, and freedom in reproductive health decisions, Wimberly also helps underserved patients and shares her knowledge with rural doctors.

    "Dr. Yolanda Wimberly is extremely deserving of this honor. She represents the best of Morehouse School of Medicine and all that we stand for — excellence in everything we do," said MSM President John E. Maupin Jr., D.D.S. "From her training and mentoring of students and residents to the patients she treats and counsels at a number of clinics in the Atlanta community, she shows respect for all who come in contact with her. It is evident that she shares MSM's values of knowledge, wisdom, excellence and service and incorporates those in her daily life."

    Using a hands-on approach to public education, Wimberly also opens her home to meetings, collaborating with students to make posters and create skits for discussion groups and health fairs, which she leads to promote disease awareness and parent-teen communication. As one fourth-year student observes, [Wimberly] "even goes out of her way to pick up a student or drop off needed supplies."

    A chemistry major at the University of Memphis, Wimberly later earned her M.D. degree from Meharry Medical College and an M.S. degree in epidemiology from the University of Cincinnati. She completed her residency in pediatrics at Northwestern Children's Memorial Hospital and an adolescent medicine fellowship at Cincinnati Children's Hospital.

    Additionally, she received the MSM Faculty Advisor Award from the graduating medical student class of 2006 and the prestigious Dean's Award at MSM for Outstanding Teacher of the Year. Wimberly also is the recipient of the inaugural award of Young Physician of the Year given by the Georgia Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

    During its annual meeting, the AAMC will award national recognition to nine individuals and one medical school for their outstanding contributions to academic medicine. To read more about the award click here.

    For a list of previous AAMC Humanism in Medicine Award recipients, click here.

    Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM), located in Atlanta, Georgia, was founded in 1975 as the Medical Education Program at Morehouse College. In 1981 Morehouse School of Medicine became an independently chartered institution and the first minority medical school established at a Historically Black College and University in the 20th century. MSM is among the nation's leading educators of primary care physicians. Our faculty and alumni are noted in their fields for excellence in teaching, research and public policy, and are known in the community for exceptional, culturally appropriate patient care. For more information about Morehouse School of Medicine, visit us online at