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AMA Inaugurates Dr. Nancy Nielsen as President

New York physician becomes the AMA's second woman president

CHICAGO, June 17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Nancy H. Nielsen, M.D., Ph.D., a board-certified internist from Buffalo, N.Y., was inaugurated today as the 163rd president of the American Medical Association (AMA), the nation's largest and most influential physician organization. She is the second woman to hold the AMA's highest elected office.

In her inaugural address as AMA president, Dr. Nielsen spoke to the nation's physician leaders gathered for the AMA Annual Meeting and pledged to bridge the obstacles to a better American health care system.

"We must use our profession's inherent commitment, courage and compassion to come together with patients, employers and insurers to build a bridge that provides safe passage across the health care chasm," said Dr. Nielsen. "Physicians know the barriers to health care reform better than anyone. We must be the engineers who design a signature American solution for a better health care system."

Dr. Nielsen began her leadership role with the AMA in 2000, serving four consecutive annual terms as speaker of the House of Delegates, the AMA policy-setting body, and three consecutive annual terms as vice-speaker.

Dr. Nielsen has been an active contributor to organized medicine's policy discussions and has held several important positions in the AMA, including the Council on Scientific Affairs. During her two terms on this prominent advisory committee to the AMA, she helped develop policy on important public health issues such as alcoholism among women, colorectal cancer screening and safety in dispensing prescriptions.

Dr. Nielsen also acts as an AMA representative or liaison to a number of outside groups focused on enhancing the quality of medical care, including the AMA-convened Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement and the National Quality Forum.

In addition to her work with the AMA, Dr. Nielsen is senior associate dean for medical education at the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University of Buffalo.

During 23 years of medical practice in Buffalo, Dr. Nielsen has long been active in health care issues important to New York. She was a trustee of the State University of New York, and a chief medical officer for the New York State Department of Health's Western Region. She has served as an officer with the Medical Society of the State of New York, the New York State Society of Internal Medicine and the Erie County Medical Society.

Dr. Nielsen earned a doctorate in microbiology from the Catholic University of America. At the age of 29, after the birth of her fifth child, she entered medical school. She received her medical degree in 1976 from the University of Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. Dr. Nielsen is a master of the American College of Physicians.

SOURCE American Medical Association
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