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May 17, 2016

Family Medicine Professor Wins Distinguished Physician Award

Tatum recognized for outstanding care of patients near the end of life

The Cunniff-Dixon Foundation recently awarded Paul Tatum, MD, MSPH, associate professor of family and community medicine at the University of Missouri School of Medicine, with the 2016 Hastings Center Cunniff-Dixon Physician Award for Outstanding Care of Patients Near the End of Life.

Paul Tatum

Tatum

“Widely respected for his expertise in symptom management and personalized care, Dr. Tatum is a model family physician and geriatrician,” said Steven Zweig, MD, MSPH, Paul Revare Family Endowed Professor and Chair at the MU School of Medicine and director of the MU Interdisciplinary Center on Aging. “He continues to advocate for the improved care of the seriously ill, dying and aging through education, communication, public policy and research. I cannot think of a more deserving physician to receive this award.”

The Hastings Center seeks to support palliative care skills and virtues by awarding financial prizes to physicians who deliver excellent patient-centered palliative care. The Cunniff-Dixon Physician Award is given in categories of senior, mid-career and early-career, with Tatum winning the $25,000 mid-career award.

Tatum’s commitment to palliative care is evident through the numerous roles in which he serves. In addition to his clinical roles, he is the fellowship director for palliative medicine and the associate fellowship director for geriatrics at MU. He also serves on the national medical director advisory council for Compassus: Hospice and Palliative Care and of The Neighborhoods by Tiger Place, a nursing facility providing long-term and short-term nursing rehabilitation services for the aging. Tatum practices as a primary care physician, hospice physician and an inpatient palliative care consultant. He serves on the Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine board of directors.

“Paul is a true leader and a passionate advocate for palliative care,” said Shaida Talebreza, MD, assistant professor University of Utah and 2015 Cunniff-Dixon Award winner, one of several who nominated Tatum for the award. “He has worked tirelessly to promote palliative care, regularly meeting with senators and representatives to draw attention to the needs of vulnerable patients and gain support for important palliative care issues.”

The 2016 Hastings Center Cunniff-Dixon Physician Awards are financed by the Cunniff-Dixon Foundation, which seeks to improve doctor-patient end-of-life care.

MU’s Department of Family and Community Medicine has received several national accolades, including a recent seventh-place ranking for the specialty of family medicine by U.S. News & World Report’s Best Graduate Schools. The department has been ranked in U.S. News & World Report’s top 10 for 23 consecutive years. The MU School of Medicine also was named one of the nation’s best residency training programs for family physicians by Doximity, a California-based professional network for physicians.

Click here to download a high-resolution photo of Paul Tatum, MD


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