MASS LIVE: People in Business- Katherine Johnson Atkinson, MD, of Atkinson Family Practice

The original article can be found here, and was written by The Republican Business Desk for Mass Live on April 9, 2015

Boston – Kami Phillips, MD, president of the Massachusetts Academy of Family Physicians (MassAFP) has announced that Katherine Johnson Atkinson, MD is the recipient of the 2015 Family Medicine Educator of the Year award in recognition of her exemplary clinical teaching of medical students in the specialty of Family Medicine.

The MassAFP presents the Family Medicine Educator of the Year award to recognize a physician who exemplifies the tradition of “Physician as Teacher”. Nominees are evaluated on recognized excellence in teaching and their compassion to patients and students. Other criteria include involvement in community activities that enhance quality of life, being a credible role model as a healer and human being in their community. To be recognized as a professional in the science and art of medicine with health professionals and young physicians in training and medical students. The 2015 award will be presented at MassAFP’s Annual Meeting on March 20, 2015.

Dr. Atkinson has been a family doctor for over 15 years and since 2005, has been the Medical Director at the Atkinson Family Practice in Amherst, Massachusetts. Teaching and precepting have been constant during her career, including over 10 years as an assistant professor at University of Massachusetts Medical School, faculty at Dartmouth Medical School and as a preceptor to medical students at Tufts University Medical School.

Among students who nominated Dr. Atkinson for this award, was UMass Medical School, MD candidate Jessica Fortin, who stated,

“Although I am only a first year student, Dr. Kate includes me as a part of the care team. She encourages me to attend her integrated care staff meetings and takes my input seriously. Dr. Kate is also a patient and understanding teacher.” And this from Angela Coombs, MD candidate, Tufts University School of Medicine, “I became one of several early career health professionals/students to train at her incredible Family Medicine Practice that exemplified the strengths of a comprehensive and integrated care model. Despite running a busy practice, Dr. Atkinson took time after the evaluation of each and every patient to teach me.”

Colleague Nora Schwartz-Martin, MD comments, “Her practice is on the cutting edge of integration of medicine and includes group collaboration, problem solving and team meetings. She uses these times as well as clinical face to face time with patients to improve both patients’ and clinicians’ knowledge, understanding and to be open to learning herself.”

Dr. Atkinson states, “Having a medical student in the office can be extra work at times, but it is so important that students have an opportunity to experience a practice like ours where we still love our jobs and are optimistic that we can make a difference.”