May 19, 2018
Mitchell, MD, a Tyler family physician, was named a Health Hero by the Texas
Medical Association (TMA) for her commitment to improving the health of her
community. She was one of only three physicians TMA honored with the second annual
award last week during TexMed, TMA’s annual conference, in San Antonio.
The award recognizes
TMA members who have led and participated in all three of TMA’s flagship
outreach programs: Be
Wise — ImmunizeSM, a program to educate about
vaccinations and improve vaccination rates in Texas; Hard Hats for Little Heads, a bike helmet giveaway program; and Walk With a Doc Texas(WWAD), a national grassroots movement devoted to encouraging
healthy physical activity. TMA’s
Council on Health Promotion presents the award as part of its oversight of
TMA’s outreach programs, along with the TMA
which funds them.
“I am honored to be named a Health Hero,” said Dr. Mitchell.
“I simply took advantage of bringing these important programs to Smith County.”
recognized the Smith County Medical Society, a group of Tyler-area physicians,
as a Health Hero alongside Dr. Mitchell. Together, they have sponsored a WWAD walk
in Tyler* since 2014 led by Dr. Mitchell and other physicians. The Tyler Fit
City Coalition also helped start the initiative in Tyler.
County walk is unique, said Dr. Mitchell, because the physician walk leaders
change weekly. (Most WWAD sponsors are a single physician, or two physicians.)
“Our physician members really have embraced educating and exercising with
patients in a nonclinic setting.”
Dr. Mitchell and
Smith County Medical Society also have vaccinated Whitehouse children in prep for
school, and against the flu. In addition, they are working with TMA this year
to vaccinate Tyler college students against human papillomavirus to help
prevent cancers caused by the virus.
A local half
marathon provided the venue to give away Hard Hats for Little Heads helmets
last year. Dr. Mitchell, other physicians, and volunteers fit helmets to
children for free.
executive director of the Smith County Medical Society, said Dr. Mitchell’s
leadership in bringing the programs to the Tyler area and her dedication to
keeping them going has been extraordinary. “No one could be more deserving of
the ‘Health Hero’ title,” said Ms. Driggs. “Dr. Mitchell is a true champion of
health for her patients, the Smith County Medical Society, and our East Texas
Mitchell, the efforts go hand in hand with the practice of medicine. “These programs
bring physicians back to the roots of why we chose careers in medicine — they
help reignite and strengthen our passion for caring for others,” said Dr.
Mitchell, who has practiced medicine for 17 years.
said she believes physicians can affect patients’ health with their clinical
skills and through community outreach. “Showing patients our personal side and
our willingness to engage in their health outside of office hours humanizes
Foundation, TMA’s philanthropic arm, is committed to connecting the charitable
concerns of physicians with the people of Texas. The three TMAF-funded outreach
initiatives enable physicians to give back to their community and help support
TMA’s mission to “improve the health of all Texans.”
A TMA member for
22 years, Dr. Mitchell serves on TMA’s Council on Health Promotion and the TMA Be
Wise — Immunize Physician Advisory Panel. She is a former president and
secretary of the Smith County Medical Society and is a delegate to the TMA
House of Delegates, the association’s policymaking body.
physicians who were named Health Heroes today are TMA President Douglas W.
Curran, MD, of Athens, and Lekshmi Nair, MD, of Manvel. They join four
physicians who received this distinction in 2017.
TMA is the largest state medical society in the nation,
representing more than 51,000 physician and medical student members. It is
located in Austin and has 110 component county medical societies around the
state. TMA’s key objective since 1853 is to improve the health of all Texans.
Be Wise — Immunize is a service mark of the Texas Medical
*Walkers meet the first and third Saturdays
of each month at 9 am at Rose Rudman Trail, Copeland Road Trailhead, to walk.
Contact: Brent Annear (512) 370-1381; cell: (512) 656-7320; email: brent.annear[at]texmed[dot]org
Marcus Cooper (512)
370-1382; cell: (512) 650-5336; email: marcus.cooper[at]texmed[dot]org
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