Robert E. Bowers, MD, of Chattanooga, has been named a TMA Quarterly Public Health Champion for 2014. The honor recognizes Tennessee Medical Association member physicians for their outstanding public health contributions across the state of Tennessee.
Nominated by the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Medical Society for the honor, Dr. Bowers was chosen for his volunteer efforts to improve public health and access to health care in his community. Honored in 2011 with the American Medical Association Foundation’s Jack B. McConnell, MD, Award for Excellence in Volunteerism, Dr. Bowers has served roles in programs to provide donated health care to the underserved and uninsured in Hamilton County.
As founder and past president of the Medical Foundation of Chattanooga, he played a role in the creation of Project Access. Since 2004, that program has provided more than $112 million in health care services donated by more than 700 Hamilton County doctors. Since 2006, Dr. Bowers has also served as medical director of Volunteers in Medicine, Chattanooga, Inc., another program dedicated to providing free health care services to the uninsured or those who otherwise cannot afford health care. VIMC has logged over 43,000 patient visits and has delivered nearly $14 million worth of medical care at clinic rates or nearly $57 million at emergency room rates.
A retired otolaryngologist, Dr. Bowers is a former president of the CHCMS and the TMA, a former AMA delegate from the TMA, and a member of the American Academy of Otolaryngology and the American Medical Association. Dr. Bowers received his medical degree in 1961 from Loma Linda University School of Medicine in Loma Linda, CA.