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10 October 2000

Institute of Medicine Honors Former Chancellor Philip R. Lee

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) will present the Gustav O. Lienhard Award for the advancement of personal health services to Philip R. Lee, MD, former UCSF Chancellor and emeritus professor at the Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies.

Lee is being honored for his outstanding and unique contributions to improving personal health services as a practitioner, advocate, researcher, policymaker, administrator, and public leader. The award will be presented October 16 at the IOM annual meeting in Washington, DC.

Lee has devoted his long and distinguished career to improving health care in this country and around the world. After receiving his medical training at Stanford University and completing fellowships at Bellevue Medical Center in New York City and the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., Lee joined the staff of the Palo Alto Medical Clinic, a renowned group practice founded by his father. While primarily practicing internal medicine, he began a strong involvement in the larger policy issues affecting health care, especially for the elderly and disabled. During his tenure at the clinic, he helped develop Channing House, an early model for congregate living for the elderly that became nationally recognized and widely emulated.

In 1963 Lee turned his attention to world health issues and was appointed director of health services at the Office of Technical Cooperation and Research, Agency for International Development, in the US Department of State. In this position, he drafted US policy on international family planning services, helped strengthen the agency's health and nutrition program, and earned the agency's Superior Honor Award.

Lee played a distinguished, prominent health-policy role in Washington in the mid-1960s, a time that saw the greatest expansion and improvement in personal health services in US history. He was one of a handful of physicians who supported the establishment of Medicare. Lee moved to the US Department of Health, Education, and Welfare in 1965 as deputy assistant secretary, and later that year he worked with the commissioner of Social Security and the Bureau of Health Insurance in establishing policies on physician payment and quality assurance. In addition, he worked with the Social Security Administration in applying the Civil Rights Act to desegregate hospitals, chaired the Task Force on Prescription Drugs, and established the National Center for Health Services Research. He was awarded the Secretary's Special Citation in 1969.

As Chancellor of UCSF, beginning in 1969, Lee helped encourage the development of strong affirmative-action programs, making the University a national leader with respect to the proportion of minority student enrollment. In 1972, Lee established the UCSF Health Policy Program, which today has more than 150 faculty and staff, and houses training programs sponsored by leading public and private organizations. Although a large number of universities have programs modeled after UCSF's, its program is considered to be pre-eminent.

Lee also has been an outstanding leader in policies affecting health care services at the local and state levels. He has served on the advisory board of the San Francisco City and County Health Department, and saw the department address a wide range of health care issues, from the spread of the AIDS epidemic to problems related to toxic substances. At the state level, Lee has served as an adviser to various state government officials and members of the legislature.

In 1986 Lee was selected to be the first chairman of the newly established Physician Payment Review Commission, charged by Congress to develop recommendations for changing the methods used to pay physicians under the Medicare program. From 1993 to 1997, he returned to Washington to serve once more as assistant secretary of health.

The Gustav O. Lienhard Award is funded by an endowment from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Gustav O. Lienhard was chair of the foundation's board of trustees from the organization's establishment in 1971 to his retirement in 1986. Lienhard, who died in 1987, had built his career with Johnson & Johnson Co., beginning as an accountant and retiring 39 years later as president.

This year's ceremony marks the 15th presentation of the award, which includes a medal and a $25,000 prize.

Institute of Medicine
UCSF Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies

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