UA's Dr. Roubideaux Receives Inaugural Physician Advocacy Merit Award

Recognized for Work Combating Diabetes in American Indian and Alaska Native Communities

Yvette Roubideaux, MD, MPH, an American Indian physician and director of The University of Arizona’s Indians Into Medicine Program (INMED), has been recognized as a physician advocate for her work combating diabetes in American Indian and Alaska Native communities.

She was presented with one of only three inaugural Physician Advocacy Merit Awards at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York on Nov. 13. Winners of the award receive a cash prize of $10,000.

Dr. Roubideaux, a member of the Rosebud Sioux tribe, is an assistant professor in the UA College of Medicine Department of Family & Community Medicine. Her work focuses on research and education about diabetes in American Indians and health policy.

The Institute on Medicine as a Profession (IMAP) and its partner, the Center on Medicine as a Profession (CMAP) at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, recently instituted the annual Physician Advocacy Merit Award to recognize physician advocates for their accomplishments in promoting and realizing the principles of civic engagement and medical professionalism.

Dr. Roubideaux’s education about advocacy efforts to fund diabetes prevention and treatment services in American Indian and Alaska Native communities in 35 states has benefited nearly 400 programs. She chairs the American Diabetes Association Awakening the Spirit Team, which helped lead national efforts to advocate for Congressional reauthorization of the Special Diabetes Program for Indians (SDPI). Her team and its partners organized letter-writing campaigns, calls to action and congressional visits, developed an Advocacy Toolkit and highlighted SDPI success stories. The SDPI was reauthorized several times in the past decade and increased funding from $30 million in 1997 to $150 million through 2008. The most recent advocacy efforts of Dr. Roubideaux’s team and its partners led to the reauthorization of the program at an additional $150 million per year through 2011.

More information about the Physician Advocacy Merit Award is available at www.nhchc.org/Network/NetworkNews/MeritAwardGuidelines.pdf, or visit the Web site, http://www.imapny.org.

For more information about Dr. Roubideaux, visit UA College of Medicine Department of Family & Community Medicine Web site, http://www.fcm.arizona.edu, and click on “People” then “Research Faculty.” For more information about INMED, visit the Web site http://www.publichealth.arizona.edu/inmed.