Lori J. Heim, M.D., Assumes Role of Board Chair

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Janelle Davis
Public Relations Strategist
American Academy of Family Physicians
(800) 274-2237 Ext. 5222

DENVER — Lori J. Heim, M.D., FAAFP, a family physician in Vass, N.C., assumes the role of board chair of the American Academy of Family Physicians today. Previously, she served one-year terms as president and president-elect and three years as a member of the AAFP Board of Directors. Heim was elected to these positions by the Congress of Delegates, the AAFP’s governing body. The AAFP represents 94,700 physicians and medical students nationwide.

A practicing family physician for 20 years, Heim currently serves as a hospitalist at Scotland Memorial Hospital in Laurinburg, N.C., where she manages the inpatient care of adult patients referred by primary care physicians in the community. Hospitalists bridge the gap between hospitalized patients and their primary care doctors to ensure continuity of care. Heim is the first family physician to serve as a hospitalist at Scotland Memorial Hospital. She is joined in the hospitalist program by four internal medicine physicians and two family nurse practitioners. Previously, she was in private practice in Pinehurst, N.C. As AAFP board chair, Heim will advocate on behalf of family physicians and patients nationwide to inspire positive change in the U.S. health care system.

A member of the AAFP since 1985, Heim served as a delegate to the AAFP Congress of Delegates from 2000 to 2004. She served on the Commission on Health Care Services and on the Task Force of Linkages to Practice Improvement. In addition, she held the offices of president, vice president, and member of the board of directors of the Uniformed Services Academy of Family Physicians. Heim joined the North Carolina Academy of Family Physicians when she retired from the U.S. Air Force in 2007 and relocated to North Carolina.

Heim also served on the board of managers of TransforMED, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the AAFP that is focused on helping primary care medical practices adopt the patient-centered medical home model of care. In this role, Heim worked with other members of the board of managers to approve and oversee the TransforMED operating budget, as well as goals and performance measures to assure consistency with the AAFP’s budgeted capital contributions to the new business entity.

Heim earned her bachelor’s degree with honors from Portland State University – Oregon, and was then commissioned in the U.S. Air Force and earned her medical degree at the Uniformed Services

University of the Health Sciences – Bethesda, Md. She completed her residency at the Family Medicine Residency – Andrews Air Force Base, Md. She then completed a fellowship in faculty development and research from the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill. Heim is board certified by the American Board of Family Medicine and has the AAFP Degree of Fellow, an earned degree awarded to family physicians for distinguished service and continuing medical education.

Heim’s appointments with the Air Force included staff physician, clinic chief, residency director, assistant professor, university health center director, chief of the medical staff and commander. She was stationed internationally, and she retired as a colonel from the Air Force after 25 years of service.

Heim has lectured worldwide and her work has been published in peer-reviewed journals. She has participated in humanitarian missions and volunteered in medical clinics in underserved communities.

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Founded in 1947, the AAFP represents 124,900 physicians and medical students nationwide. It is the only medical society devoted solely to primary care.

Family physicians conduct approximately one in five office visits -- that’s 192 million visits annually or 48 percent more than the next most visited medical specialty. Today, family physicians provide more care for America’s underserved and rural populations than any other medical specialty. Family medicine’s cornerstone is an ongoing, personal patient-physician relationship focused on integrated care.

To learn more about the specialty of family medicine, the AAFP's positions(5 page PDF) on issues and clinical care, and for downloadable multi-media highlighting family medicine, visit
www.aafp.org/media. For information about health care, health conditions and wellness, please visit the AAFP’s award-winning consumer website, www.FamilyDoctor.org(www.familydoctor.org).