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Dr. Paul Walfish named to Order of Ontario

December 20, 2007 -- The long-time Mount Sinai staff endocrinologist was just named to the Order of Ontario, the province’s highest honour, capping an amazing year in which he earned three other major honours.



Dr. Paul Walfish

“It’s a great pleasure and honour to be recognized this way,” said Dr. Walfish, Professor Emeritus in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto. “Mount Sinai has given me the opportunity to pursue my patient care and research goals and this work has evolved into important health measures. Mount Sinai has always fostered an attitude of excellence in patient care, teaching and research.”

In October, Dr. Walfish’s pioneering work on the creation of a newborn screening program to detect an underactive thyroid condition in infants and prevent its consequences — mental retardation — was highlighted at the recent annual meeting of the Canadian Association of Paediatric Health Centres in a symposium presented by the Canadian Child & Youth Health Coalition as among the Top 10 Canadian Medical Advances for Children in the last 100 Years.

Also in October, Dr. Walfish was honoured by his peers across North America with two prestigious awards — the Canadian Medical Association 2007 Medal of Service and the American Thyroid Association 2007 Sidney H. Ingbar Distinguished Lectureship Award — for his lifetime of dedication to the advancement of patient care in the management and treatment of thyroid-related diseases.

“Paul’s exploration and contributions in his field have helped to put our institution on the map,” said Joseph Mapa, President and CEO of Mount Sinai Hospital. “He is a Bright Mind and a Big Heart, with a devotion to providing The Best Medicine possible to our patients.”

Named to the Order of Canada in 1990, Dr. Walfish has been at Mount Sinai since 1964 as both a scientist and a clinician whose activities have focused on numerous thyroid related diseases, including post-partum thyroiditis.

He pioneered studies using fine needle biopsies and ultrasound technology for early detection of thyroid cancer. In addition, Dr. Walfish conducts research focusing on yeast and human cell systems to understand the molecular basis of thyroid hormone action and cancer.

Dr. Walfish and 26 other prominent citizens will receive the Order of Ontario from Lieutenant-Governor David Onley at the legislature, Queen’s Park, on January 24.