Dr. Rebecca Morsch Honored By American Medical Association For Work In Papua New Guinea

Monday, February 11, 2013
Dr. Becky Morsch, director of the Community Based Health Care program of Nazarene Health Ministry, in Papua New Guinea
Dr. Becky Morsch, director of the Community Based Health Care program of Nazarene Health Ministry, in Papua New Guinea

Dr. Rebecca Morsch, MD, MPH, of Ooltewah is being honored by the American Medical Association (AMA) for her work in Papua New Guinea.

She will receive the Dr. Nathan Davis International Award in Medicine Monday in Washington, D.C.

Dr. Morsch is the director of the Community Based Health Care program of the Nazarene Health Ministry in Papua New Guinea. She is the sister of Mrs. Finley Knowles. Lori and her brother, Gary Morsch MD are accompanying her to the banquet.  

Ceremonies on Monday are in conjunction with the AMA National Advocacy Conference, and AMA has flown Dr. Morsch to Washington to receive the prestigious award.

As director of the Health Care program Dr. Morsch trains community-chosen Community Health Volunteers and Village Birth Attendants in one of the United Nation’s designated Least Developed Countries. Her training curriculum focuses on prevention and provides culturally-sensitive health education about childbirth and childcare, hygiene, waste management, injury prevention and sexually transmitted diseases.  Dr. Morsch also helped organize Papua New Guinea’s array of community-based health organizations into the Effective Development Empowering the Nation (EDEN) Network. After working as a social worker for more than 15 years, Dr. Morsch changed course and entered medical school at the University of Kansas School of Medicine, and went on to earn a Masters of Public Health degree from Loma Linda University. By treating, educating and counseling patients beyond the U.S. border, her work is having a positive impact on health care in the global arena.

Dr. Morsch in learning of the honor said, “I felt shocked, honored, humbled and unworthy, for I knew that every doctor at Kudjip Nazarene Hospital was more worthy of the award than I was, not to mention probably thousands of other missionary doctors around the world. Now I feel that this award is for everyone that makes Community Based Health Care  (CBHC) happen and keeps me on the field, but mostly an acknowledgement of what happens when God uses ordinary people.

“Travel is a huge challenge. Fuel is expensive, and our vehicle gets a beating on the back roads. Sometimes we have to take a boat, and/or fly to get near our destinations. Finding team members who are healthy and willing to make the hikes, stay in villages for weeks at a time, and have the passion and ability to be CBHC trainers is a challenge. The lack of infrastructure and communication ability with many of the communities is challenging, to say the least."

World AIDS Day Events Held Dec. 1 And 6

The Southeast TN Council for HIV/AIDS Care and Prevention, in partnership with the city of Chattanooga and The Hunter Museum of American Art, will host World AIDS Day 2015 events on Tuesday, Dec. 1, and Sunday, Dec. 6. These events will highlight the arc of the pandemic, how the southern United States is the epicenter of the domestic HIV/AIDS epidemic, the ... (click for more)

Free Metabolic Seminars Hosted By CHI Memorial Metabolic And Bariatric Care

Jack F. Rutledge, M.D. and CHI Memorial Metabolic and Bariatric Care will host two free seminars in December on surgical weight loss options. The first seminar will be held at CHI Memorial Hospital in the community room Tuesday, Dec. 1 at 6 p.m. The second seminar will be at the North River Civic Center in Hixson on Tuesday, Dec. 15 at 6 p.m. "Obesity can be devastating to ... (click for more)

Darrel Jones, 43, Shot And Killed On Central Avenue; Benson Critical In Another Of New Wave of Chattanooga Shootings

Darrel Jones, 43, was shot and killed on Central Avenue on Thursday afternoon. Then, early Friday morning, 34-year-old Desmond Benson was shot, leaving him in critical condition. as a wave of new Chattanooga shootings continued over the Thanksgiving holidays.  Chattanooga Police responded to the 3600 block of Central Avenue around 3 p.m. on a report of a ... (click for more)

Family Escapes Early Morning House Fire

A home was damaged by fire early Thursday morning.  The Chattanooga Fire Department received a fire call at  3:48  a.m.  and responded to 1825 Dixon Street with four fire companies. The family inside the home was awakened by a passerby knocking at the door. All of them quickly made their way outside the home to safety.  Once firefighters ... (click for more)

An Extra Helping Of Gratitude

After being thankful for the grace of God, my family and good health, this year I have an extra helping of gratitude to live in a special place called Chattanooga.   We endured the trauma of terrorism on July 16 and emerged more united and stronger than ever before.  We claim our heritage and celebrate our diversity like no other city in America.  We honor our ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Cometh ‘The Black Dog’

I am one of 350 million people in the world who suffers from clinical depression. The doctors trace it back to my first decade of the 21 st century when constant surgeries and infections knocked me loopy but the more I have found, I believe I am more like Sir Winston Churchill, Abraham Lincoln and pro football star Terry Bradshaw – I think I have had it all my life. Today it ... (click for more)