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Presidential Line

Academy President
John Tongue, MD

Academy 1st Vice President
Josh Jacobs, MD

Academy 2nd Vice President
Frederick M. Azar, MD

Chair, Board of Specialty Societies
Greg Mencio, MD

Chair, Board of Councilors
Fred Redfern, MD

Board Member-At-Large
Annunziato Amendola, MD

Board Member-At-Large
Matthew B. Dobbs, MD

Chair, Council on Research
and Quality
Kevin Bozic, MD, MBA

Awards

Humanitarian Award
Shafique P. Pirani, MD

Diversity Award
Franklin H. Sim, MD

Tipton Award
Vernon T. Tolo, MD

Kappa Delta Award Winners

Special Projects

2012 AAOS Public Service Advertisement Campaign

Safe, Accessible Playground Press Release

American Joint Replacement Registry (AJRR) Fact Sheet

 



Embargo for Release
:
           February 9, 2012 - 12:01 a.m. PST
For more information, contact:

Kayee Ip 847-384-4035 312-543-3211 ip@aaos.org
Kelly King 847-384-4033 217-377-9745 king@aaos.org

 

John R. Tongue, MD, Named President of AAOS

SAN FRANCISCO—Orthopaedic surgeon John R. Tongue, MD, of Lake Oswego, Ore., became the president of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) at its 2012 Annual Meeting in San Francisco on Thurs., Feb. 9, 2012.

An active member of the AAOS, Dr. Tongue has served on the Academy’s Board of Directors for the past two years. He also served as chair of the AAOS Board of Councilors and has previously volunteered on numerous other committees and task forces including the Council on Education, the Committee on Public Education and the Council on Research. “Volunteering is the icing on the cake of a successful career,” said Dr. Tongue. “It’s an opportunity to make a difference, for each of us to do something meaningful, to learn new things and to grow. Giving back is a great privilege.”

“We orthopaedic surgeons have the best specialty in medicine. We help everyone—people of all ages, backgrounds and lifestyles. Being able to improve people’s quality of life is a very positive experience. It’s immensely rewarding to have that opportunity,” said Dr. Tongue.

Dr. Tongue has received numerous honors and accolades, including the 2003 AAOS Humanitarian Award, the National Highway Traffic Safety Association Public Service Award for his work in passing the Oregon Safety Belt Law, and the Oregon Medical Association’s Doctor-Citizen of the Year Award.

“Road safety has been my personal focus for some time. So, it is timely that the Academy has a national public service awareness initiative warning about the threat of orthopaedic trauma associated with distracted driving. This initiative combines my two priorities—communications and safety—in a very important way,” said Dr. Tongue. “The Academy’s ‘Decide to Drive’ initiative is a carefully planned and effective message with good advice on choices that all drivers, including our members, can make while behind the wheel to help prevent crash-related injuries.”

His advocacy efforts for the last 20 years, in the state of Oregon, helped enact a statewide safety belt law that has reduced vehicular fatalities and injuries, making Dr. Tongue a no-apologies “roadway warrior.” In fact, 97 percent of drivers in the state of Oregon now wear safety belts. Before the law was enacted, the statistic was only 45 percent in the state.

Dr. Tongue also pioneered the AAOS Communication Skills Mentoring Program in 2000 to improve communications between members and patients—skills that are important in the patient/physician relationship for both understanding and trust. Communications, among other issues, will be top priority for Dr. Tongue during his presidency. Other issues include continued work on quality initiatives and the socioeconomic value orthopaedic interventions bring to the table. For example, said Dr. Tongue, “total joint replacements have a great impact on the society and families because it can get people back to work. Orthopaedic surgeons also help seniors live independently, and keep people mobile and moving, so it’s important to make that known to the public and to policymakers.”

“One of the biggest challenges the Academy will face in the coming year is healthcare reform,” said Dr. Tongue. “The lead in our mission statement is ‘to champion the interests of our patients,’ so it’s our duty to fight for a sustainable healthcare system, access for our patients and improvement of care.”

A graduate of Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill., and the St. Louis University School of Medicine in Missouri, Dr. Tongue served as an intern and general surgery resident at the University of Oregon Medical School in Portland, Ore. He then completed his orthopaedic surgery residency at the San Francisco Orthopaedic Residency Training Program, a sports medicine fellowship at the Orthopaedic Fracture Clinic in Eugene, Ore., and a hand surgery fellowship at the University of California in San Francisco.

Currently, Dr. Tongue maintains his private practice in Tualatin, Ore., and also is a clinical associate professor at Oregon Health Sciences University in Portland.

“As a community-based physician, when you have worked in one community for an extended period of time, you have a special relationship with your patients—an extraordinary amount of trust—when they come in because a neighbor recommended that they see you, or if you’ve previously cared for their child. You build a rapport with those you serve because of the broader opportunities gained as general practice orthopaedic surgeon. It’s an opportunity to become a citizen leader, to become part of a community, and to be able to make a difference within a community. Having your patients remember you, thank you and trust you—that’s my fuel,” added Dr. Tongue.

“Within the Academy’s leadership structure, I represent the majority of our membership, those who are community practitioners. I share their concerns about running a private practice while balancing a surgical and office schedule. One of my messages is that surgeons in all areas of musculoskeletal health must get involved as volunteers of this remarkable community of orthopaedic learners so we continue to have a balanced view of the state of our profession,” said Dr. Tongue.

Active in several professional societies, Dr. Tongue also is a member of the American Orthopaedic Association, the Western Orthopaedic Association, and the Oregon Medical Association. He also has authored more than 80 publications, book chapters and presentations.

"As we continue to tackle the challenges and opportunities ahead for the specialty, John’s passion and commitment to patients, safety and communication will be a strong guide. John is a voice for our fellow surgeons in community practice and his dedication to the Academy and its membership is remarkable,” explained AAOS Immediate Past President Daniel J. Berry, MD.

“Volunteers can’t do this kind of volunteer work without the support of their family. I am so grateful to my family for their support,” said Dr. Tongue. His advice to younger members on volunteerism is to “pick something that you’re particularly interested in, and keep a short list, so that you can do things meaningful to you and have a balance of familial and professional responsibilities.” When referring to his own familial support, he said, “My wife, Nancy, is truly the love of my life—I adore her. She is a nurse so she understands the pressures and commitment in medicine.”

When not volunteering or seeing patients, Dr. Tongue enjoys fly fishing, skiing and spending time with Nancy and their three children. The couple looks forward to welcoming their first grandchild in April.

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