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Newton lands humanitarian award from national anesthesiology group

Oct. 27, 2016, 8:45 AM

by Amy Nabours

Mark Newton, M.D., professor of Clinical Anesthesiology and director of the Vanderbilt International Anesthesia program, has been named to receive the 2016 Nicholas M. Greene, M.D., Outstanding Humanitarian Contribution Award.

Mark Newton, M.D.
Mark Newton, M.D.

The award is conferred by the Global Humanitarian Outreach (GHO) Committee of the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA), the primary specialty society for anesthesiology.

The annual award originated in 2010 and recognizes an ASA member whose career supports international humanitarian aid and disaster relief or education and training in low income countries through personal sacrifice, academic contribution or technological innovation. It is named for Nicholas M. Greene, M.D., who founded the ASA Overseas Teaching Program, which was eventually renamed the Global Humanitarian Outreach Committee.

Newton’s contribution to international humanitarian efforts has spanned his entire career. He has lived full time within walking distance of Kijabe Hospital in Kenya for more than 18 years, where his commitment to service as well as education and training of local providers has resulted in vastly improved anesthesia capacity, in turn contributing to the increase in access to safe surgery in the region of East Africa.

As director of the Vanderbilt International Anesthesia program, Newton also oversees an effort where Vanderbilt University Medical Center residents and fellows can learn firsthand, through a monthlong rotation in Kenya, about the landscape of global health, and, specifically, about providing anesthesia care in austere settings.

The award was presented to Newton on Oct. 24 at the ASA’s 2016 annual meeting. Vanderbilt’s Department of Anesthesiology was well represented at the conference, offering more than 100 academic activities including seminars, hands-on workshops, poster discussions and medically challenging case presentations.

David Chestnut, M.D.
David Chestnut, M.D.

Immediately following Newton’s award presentation, David Chestnut, M.D., professor of Anesthesiology and chief of Vanderbilt’s Division of Obstetric Anesthesiology, delivered the Emery A. Rovenstine Memorial Lecture, one of the key lectures of the annual meeting, titled “On the Road to Professionalism.”

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