Dr. B.W. Ruffner Jr. and the late Dr. Winston P. Caine have been named recipients of Tennessee Medical Association awards along with Hamilton County Project Access.
The awards will be presented Saturday in Franklin, Tenn., at the TMA's 178th annual meeting.
Caine is being posthumously honored with a TMA Outstanding Physician Award, given annually to physicians who have made their personal mark on the profession and on those with whom they worked.
Ruffner will receive the Distinguished Service Award, presented for notable achievements during the prior year.
Project Access will receive the TMA Community Service Award, given to people or organizations outside the medical profession that contribute to the advancement of public health.
Caine began practicing internal medicine and hematology in Chattanooga in 1969. He was chief of the Hematology Service at the Chattanooga unit of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine and a former chief of staff of Erlanger hospital.
While undergoing cancer treatment last fall, the doctor continued an active schedule of patient care and teaching until the day before his death, according to a TMA news release.
Caine twice received the Outstanding Teacher Award from UT College of Medicine in Chattanooga, won the 2000 American College of Physicians' National Volunteer Teacher of the Year, the 2009 Baroness Erlanger Foundation Distinguished Physician Award and the 2010 Augustus McCravey Award for a Lifetime of Excellence in Medical Education.
Ruffner was TMA president from 2010-2011. In the past year, he served as TMA representative to the AMA Physicians Consortium for Performance Improvement and chaired the Baroness Erlanger Foundation. He also represented the state in the AMA Council on Senior Physicians and as an alternate delegate to AMA.
He was a consultant for the Center for Medical Technology Policy and to the BlueCross BlueShield of America Technology Evaluation Center, as well as serving on the Project Access Operations Council.
Project Access provides medical services to low-income, uninsured residents of Hamilton County.
Managed by the Medical Foundation of Chattanooga, it was the first Project Access initiative in the state. Since its beginning in April 2004, Project Access has coordinated more than $100 million in documented health care services from physicians, health centers, laboratories, hospitals, rehabilitation and physical therapy facilities and other partners. The services are provided at no charge to qualifying patients.
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