Lori J. Heim, M.D., Assumes Role of President of the American Academy of Family Physicians

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Janelle Davis
Public Relations Strategist
American Academy of Family Physicians
(800) 274-2237 Ext. 6253

BOSTON — Lori J. Heim, M.D., FAAFP, a family physician in Laurinburg, N.C., assumes the role of president of the American Academy of Family Physicians today. Previously, she served three years as a director on the AAFP Board of Directors and one year as president-elect. Heim was elected president-elect in September 2008 by the Congress of Delegates, the AAFP’s governing body. The AAFP represents more than 94,600 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 president of the AAFP, Heim advocates 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 LLC, a for-profit 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 at 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 in Turkey and domestically in Washington, D.C., Florida, North Carolina and Washington state. 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 participated in humanitarian missions and volunteered in medical clinics in underserved communities. She has received numerous decorations including the Air Force Meritorious Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal and the Air Force Achievement Medal. Her awards include the Joint Meritorious Unit Award, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award, Humanitarian Service Award and the National Defense Service Award.

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Founded in 1947, the American Academy of Family Physicians represents 134,600 physicians and medical students nationwide, and it is the only medical society devoted solely to primary care.

Family physicians conduct approximately one in five of the total medical office visits in the United States per year – more than any other specialty. Family physicians provide comprehensive, evidence-based, and cost-effective care dedicated to improving the health of patients, families and communities. Family medicine’s cornerstone is an ongoing and personal patient-physician relationship where the family physician serves as the hub of each patient’s integrated care team. More Americans depend on family physicians than on any other medical specialty.

To learn more about the AAFP and family medicine, visit www.aafp.org/media. Follow us on Twitter,(twitter.com) and like us on Facebook. For information about health care, health conditions and wellness, visit the AAFP’s award-winning consumer website, www.familydoctor.org(familydoctor.org).