Syracuse Family Physician Receives National Honor from American Academy of Family Physicians
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, September 28, 2006
American Academy of Family Physicians
(800) 274-2237 Ext. 5204
The Thomas W. Johnson Award is the highest honor presented by the AAFP for outstanding contributions to family medicine education at the undergraduate, graduate and continuing education levels. It is intended to recognize a career of national prominence, reflecting leadership and long-term dedication to family medicine education.
Over the course of his 35-year family medicine career as an educator, author, clinician and professional leader, Wolff has made significant contributions to education in family medicine and to the improvement of the public’s health through health care education.
Since completing his residency in 1971, Wolff instituted seven family medicine residencies in the U.S. Army system. By his individual effort, Wolff also was instrumental in developing the Rural Medical Education Program at SUNY Upstate Medical University, offering students medical education based in a rural setting. He currently serves as director emeritus of the program.
Since joining the faculty at SUNY Upstate Medical University 33 years ago, Wolff has been involved in all aspects of education, curriculum design, administration, teaching and grant writing. He served as chair of the University’s family medicine department for 12 years.
In addition to his academic service, Wolff has maintained a separate clinical practice since 1971, maintaining his credibility as an expert clinician whose teaching expertise derives from personal experience. He has been a partner and practicing physician with Family Medicine Medical Service Group in Syracuse, N.Y., since 1973. He also finds time to provide community service, having made routine local television appearances and serving on local panels for visiting nursing and home-health care. He currently serves as a trustee for the Community Health Foundation of Western and Central New York.
Throughout his medical career, Wolff has been an active family medicine leader on the local, state and national levels. In addition to his committee work for the American Academy of Family Physicians and American Board of Medical Specialties, Wolff has served as president of both the American Board of Family Medicine and the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine. His leadership has been recognized with numerous awards and appointments, including the AAFP’s President’s Award, which honors exemplary dedication to the improvement of health care.
At the state level, Wolff has served as board chair of the New York State Academy of Family Physicians. Wolff also was honored to serve as a member of the New York Governor’s Health Care Advisory Board for developing health care policy and the New York State Senate Task Force on Primary Care. In this capacity, Wolff helped shape health care policy for the state, including workforce, quality of care, financing, medical liability and systems design.
In the words of Timothy J. Ryan, M.D., a fellow family medicine educator who has known Dr. Wolff for 30 years, “In short, Dr. Wolff is a can-do M.D.” Another colleague described him as “one of the giants in family medicine education.”
Wolff earned his undergraduate degree from Siena College, Albany, N.Y., and his medical degree from Albany Medical College. He is board certified by the American Board of Family Medicine and is a fellow of the AAFP, an earned degree awarded to family physicians for distinguished service and continuing medical education.
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Founded in 1947, the AAFP represents 110,600 physicians and medical students nationwide. It is the only medical society devoted solely to primary care.
Approximately one in four of all office visits are made to family physicians. That is 240 million office visits each year — nearly 87 million more than the next largest 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 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.