National Awards Honor Physicians

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Duke geriatrician among the five recipients of the 2011 Hastings Cunniff-Dixon Physician Awards
Friday, January 14, 2011

GalanosDuke geriatrician Anthony “Tony” Galanos is among five recipients of the 2011 Hastings Cunniff-Dixon Physician Awards honoring extraordinary commitment to caring for patients with serious and life-limiting illnesses. 

The national awards, which include cash prizes totaling $95,000, are administered by the Duke Institute on Care at the End of Life (ICEOL), whose director, Richard Payne M.D., chaired the selection process. They are made annually to physicians in three categories: senior, mid-career, and early-career.

 “As we debate health care policy in the United States, with all its controversy about ‘death panels’ and such, we commend these physicians who provide care on a physical, psychological, and spiritual level—not just for the patients themselves, but for their families and loved ones as well,” Payne said. “These five award winners are the people that we wish could provide care for all of us.”

Galanos is medical director of the Duke University Hospital Palliative Care Service in Durham, N.C.  His nominator wrote, “I have been most impressed not by his mastery of the science of palliative care… but by his display of the ‘art of medicine.’ He is truly a healer who addresses the suffering of the whole person.” As the mid-career recipient, he will receive a $25,000 cash prize.

Ann Allegre of Kansas City, Mo., is receiving the senior physician award and $25,000. She is the director of Medical Programs at Kansas City Hospice and Palliative Care, and is recognized for her pioneering contributions to the field and for her commitment to teaching in physician education and leadership programs.

Early-career honorees, each of whom will receive $15,000, include:

  • Savithri Nageswaran, who is based at the Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, in recognition of her care for pediatric patients with complex, life-threatening medical conditions;
  • Stefan J. Friedrichsdorf, medical director, Department of Pain Medicine, Palliative Care, and Integrative Medicine at Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota; and
  • Eric W. Widera, director of the Hospice and Palliative Care Service of San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center and co-founder of Geri-Pal, an online forum for communication about geriatric palliative care issues.

In addition to Dr. Payne, the selection committee included Dr. Tom Duffy of Yale University, Dr. Katherine Foley of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, and Dr. Larry Churchill of Vanderbilt University. 

The institute, based in the Duke Divinity School, conducts work on a national level with medical care providers, clergy, and others to integrate spiritual care into end-of-life treatment.

Read more at The Hastings Center »