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Columbus Family Physician Receives National Honor From American Academy of Family Physicians
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
American Academy of Family Physicians
(800) 274-2237, Ext. 5223
The award recognizes an AAFP member whose executive skills in health care have contributed to excellence in the provision of high-quality health care and demonstrated that family physicians can have an impact on improving the overall health of the nation. It is named in honor of Dr. Robert Graham, former AAFP executive vice president (1985 to 2000), who dedicated his career to improving access to health care and fostering the tenets of family medicine.
Welker is employed by The Ohio State University (OSU) where she serves as executive director for the Primary Care Network, associate dean for Primary Care and chair of the Department of Family Medicine. She serves on the board of directors of OSU East Hospital and on the board of OSU Physicians. During her tenure at OSU, Welker also served as vice chair for clinical services and as director of the OSU Family Medicine Residency Program.
Prior to her roles at OSU, Welker worked for 16 years as a full-time family physician in private practice at Beechcroft Family Practice in Columbus. During that time, she served as part-time faculty for both inpatient and outpatient care at the Riverside Methodist Hospital Family Practice Residency Program.
Welker has donated a tremendous amount of her time and expertise to the AAFP and to her local chapter, the Ohio Academy of Family Physicians (Ohio AFP). An AAFP member for more than 30 years, Welker has served on the AAFP Commissions on Health Care Services, on Legislation and Governmental Affairs, and on Clinical Policies and Research.
She served on the AAFP board of directors from 2002 to 2005. During that time, she was on the executive committee and also served as an AAFP representative to the Council of Medical Specialty Societies. Welker currently serves on the board of directors of the AAFP Foundation. She also serves on the board of the AAFP’s political action committee, FamMedPAC.
On the local level, Welker has served on numerous Ohio AFP commissions and committees. She still serves on its Legislative Commission and its Quality Assessment Committee.
In addition to her participation in the AAFP and Ohio AFP, Welker has served on the State of Ohio Medicaid Formulary Committee for the past 18 years. Since 2006, she has served on the quality improvement panel of the Medical Board of the State of Ohio. In 2001, Welker was appointed by the governor of Ohio to serve on the state’s Healthcare Workforce Shortage Task Force.
Welker is a member of the American Medical Association, the Ohio State Medical Association, Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society and the American College of Physician Executives. Locally, she volunteers her time and expertise to the Academy of Medicine Free Clinic and the Columbus Free Clinic.
Welker earned a bachelor of arts degree in sociology from OSU in 1972. She then went to medical school at the OSU College of Medicine and completed her residency in family medicine at Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus.
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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.
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