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Diane E. Meier, MD Receives Clinical Excellence Award From Castle Connolly Medical Ltd.

New York, NY (March 23, 2009) — Diane E. Meier, MD, a pioneer in palliative care who has fought to improve the quality of life for patients with chronic and debilitating illnesses, received the Clinical Excellence Award today at the fourth annual Castle Connolly Medical Ltd. National Physician of the Year Awards. The awards presentation took place at The Hudson Theatre at the Millennium Broadway Hotel in New York City.

Dr. Meier is Director of both the Center to Advance Palliative Care (CAPC) and the Lilian and Benjamin Hertzberg Palliative Care Institute at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City, where she has served on the faculty since 1983. She is also the Catherine Gaisman Professor of Medical Ethics and Professor of Geriatrics and Internal Medicine at Mount Sinai. Dr. Meier is one of three physicians who will receive the Clinical Excellence Award, designed to recognize physicians who exemplify excellence in clinical medical practice.

Physicians profiled in the Castle Connolly “Top Doctor” guides nominated Dr. Meier for this award. Castle Connolly surveys tens of thousands of physicians and hospital executives each year to identify, screen and select those physicians regarded by their peers as leaders in their specialties and for specific diseases and techniques as “Top Doctors.”

As Director of the Center to Advance Palliative Care (CAPC), Dr. Meier leads a national organization devoted to increasing the number and quality of palliative care programs in the United States. Dr. Meier’s devotion to treating patients with chronic and serious illness has led to the growth of hospital palliative care programs around the country, a necessity to meet the needs of an aging population. Palliative care differs from hospice care in that it helps patients manage all stages of chronic illness by providing them with access to both curative or life-prolonging and supportive care treatments. Patients typically benefit from palliative care aimed at relief of symptoms, practical support for families, and help negotiating this fragmented healthcare system.

“We congratulate Dr. Meier on receiving this very prestigious honor,” said Dennis S. Charney, MD, Anne and Joel Ehrenkranz Dean of Mount Sinai School of Medicine and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs at The Mount Sinai Medical Center. “Dr. Meier’s leadership in the field of Palliative Care has created a paradigm shift in hospital care of patients with serious illness. Her work is of critical importance not only to Mount Sinai but to the entire country.”

Dr. Meier is the recipient of numerous awards, including the National Institute on Aging Academic Career Leadership Award, and the Alexander Richman Commemorative Award for Humanism in Medicine. She is the Principal Investigator of an NCI-funded study on the outcomes of hospital palliative care services in cancer patients. Dr. Meier is also the recipient of a 2008 MacArthur Foundation Fellowship.

Dr. Meier has published extensively in all major peer-reviewed medical journals, including the New England Journal of Medicine and the Journal of the American Medical Association. She edited the first textbook on geriatric palliative care, as well as four editions of Geriatric Medicine, and has contributed to more than 20 books on geriatrics and palliative care. Dr. Meier has appeared numerous times on television and in print, including ABC World News Tonight, The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and Newsweek.

Dr. Meier received her BA from Oberlin College and her MD from Northwestern University Medical School. She completed her residency and fellowship training at Oregon Health Sciences University.

About The Mount Sinai Medical Center

The Mount Sinai Medical Center encompasses The Mount Sinai Hospital and Mount Sinai School of Medicine. The Mount Sinai Hospital is one of the nation’s oldest, largest and most-respected voluntary hospitals. Founded in 1852, Mount Sinai today is a 1,171-bed tertiary-care teaching facility that is internationally acclaimed for excellence in clinical care. Last year, nearly 50,000 people were treated at Mount Sinai as inpatients, and there were nearly 450,000 outpatient visits to the Medical Center.

Mount Sinai School of Medicine is internationally recognized as a leader in groundbreaking clinical and basic-science research, as well as having an innovative approach to medical education. With a faculty of more than 3,400 in 38 clinical and basic science departments and centers, Mount Sinai ranks among the top 20 medical schools in receipt of National Institute of Health (NIH) grants.

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