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Boston – Nov. 12, 2014 – Andrew S. Ulrich, MD, executive vice chairman of the department of emergency medicine at Boston Medical Center, was recently presented with one of the American Medical Association’s (AMA) most distinguished awards, the AMA Medal of Valor. The award recognizes physicians who demonstrate courage under extraordinary circumstances in non-wartime situations.
Ulrich was chosen by the AMA for his work during the April 2013 Boston Marathon bombings, which marked one of Massachusetts’ most traumatic non-wartime disasters. Given Boston Medical Center’s proximity to the blast sites, Ulrich and emergency department staff received the initial wave of critically injured patients just five minutes after being notified of the event.
“It is our honor to present Dr. Andrew Ulrich with the AMA’s Medal of Valor for his heroic work following the Boston Marathon bombings,” said AMA President Robert M. Wah, MD. “His courage, calm demeanor and expertise played an essential role in saving the lives of those patients.”
Ulrich directed and coordinated the immediate care and resuscitative efforts for 28 patients, who ranged in age from 5 to 78. He swiftly assessed the needs of each victim and identified eight patients with life threating injuries, arranging the operations they required within 40 minutes of their arrival. Under his leadership, Boston Medical Center successfully treated each of the victims, all of whom survived. Ulrich served as the medical team’s communications point-person with hospital leadership and law enforcement.
“As a hospital and a city, we collaborated and provided exceptional care in the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings,” Ulrich said. “On behalf of all of my colleagues at BMC who work every day to care for victims of violence, I am honored to accept this award.”
Ulrich currently serves as associate professor of emergency medicine at the Boston University School of Medicine. During his tenure, he has taken on numerous leadership roles in industry organizations including the Council of Residency Directors, the American College of Emergency Physicians and the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine.
In 2009, he received the Emergency Medicine Residents’ Association’s Residency Director of the Year award. Ulrich earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology and sociology from the University of Vermont in Burlington, Vermont; and his medical degree from Albert Einstein College of Medicine in Bronx, New York.
The Medal of Valor was presented to Ulrich during the opening session of the 2014 AMA Interim Meeting in Dallas, Texas.