The associate chief medical officer of HonorHealth Medical Group in Arizona received the Dr. Martin L. Block Award for Innovation & Excellence on Wednesday, March 9 at RISE National 2022 in Nashville.

Conference Co-Chair Kevin Healy, CEO, Allymar Health Solutions, with Dr. Tiffany C. Pankow.

Tiffany C. Pankow, M.D., associate chief medical officer of HonorHealth Medical Group, was awarded the Dr. Martin L. Block Award for Innovation & Excellence at RISE National 2022.

The Dr. Martin L. Block Award is a prestigious accolade presented annually at RISE National that acknowledges an individual's effort to advance the lives of America’s seniors through clinical leadership, policy vision, and by superior example of the RISE mission to promote continuous improvement in the health care system.

The award is named in honor of the late Dr. Martin L. Block who passed away in October 2013 of brain cancer at the age of 62. Dr. Block was a regular speaker at RISE National and an expert in the risk adjustment industry.

Dr. Pankow was chosen out of a field of 13 nominees for this year’s award for her work addressing food insecurity, screening patients for social determinants of health, and ensuring vaccine equity and roll out vaccination clinics at Black churches and community centers. Finalists included Richard Ferguson, M.D., chief medical officer, Health Choice, Utah; George Rapier, M.D, founder, chairman, and CEO, WellMed Medical Management; and Karmen Stephens, PharmD, vice president, clinical, Consana.

In her nomination, Dr. Pankow was touted as a strong contender for the award because of her long-standing dedication to excellence, spirit of continuous improvement, and her commitment to equity across HonorHealth, a community-based, nonprofit teaching hospital system that includes six acute care hospitals, HonorHealth Medical Group, a research institute, cancer center, 11 graduate medical education programs, center for nursing education, and a robust community benefit program addressing the social determinants of health.

“She has a strong commitment to improving patient care via changing the systems of care,” wrote Priya Radhakrishnan, M.D., vice president, chief academic officer, social determinants of health (SDoH) and health equity at HonorHealth, in the nomination. “As health care is at such difficult crossroads due to the pandemic, Dr. Pankow is the leader’s leader. She has led several successful innovative large scale system wide projects that impact millions of patient lives and hundreds of clinicians.”

Dr. Pankow also leads several process improvement initiatives, including the medical assistant training programs, physician, and provider wellbeing via improving workflows and in basket reduction programs to improve the clinical team’s workflows and reduce the stress and burdens that contribute to burn out.

She has served in several leadership positions, including regional medical director, and actively participated in committees such as the medical staff practitioner wellness committee, peer support committee, advisory board to innovation care partners, and most recently the women physicians’ leadership council.

“On a personal front, she is highly motivated and is a servant leader who has touched the lives of numerous patients with exceptional care,” Dr. Radhakrishnan wrote in the nomination. “She has made a significant impact on the physician practice and the care of patients in her community. She is a strong supporter of team-based care, and her personal leadership style has been instrumental in championing projects that are extraordinarily challenging.”

While accepting the award, Pankow said she was incredibly grateful and honored considering the legacy of Dr. Block. She accepted the award on behalf of the entire team of people at her organization who work together to help seniors. “It’s all about collaboration,” she said.