Minneapolis Pediatrician Receives AMA’s Award for Citizenship and Community Service

CHICAGO - Nov. 12, 2012 - The American Medical Association (AMA) presented Peter J. Dehnel, M.D. with its Benjamin Rush Award for Citizenship and Community Service today at its semi-annual policy-making meeting. Dr. Dehnel is a practicing pediatrician in Minneapolis, where he has led local efforts to prevent tobacco use and reduce childhood obesity rates.

“It is an honor to present Dr. Dehnel with this award honoring his public health work to improve the health of Minnesota’s youth by reducing tobacco use and preventing childhood obesity,” said AMA Board Chair Steven J. Stack, M.D. “Dr. Dehnel is a true community leader and role model for his young patients.”

Dr. Dehnel serves as a medical director for utilization management at BlueCross BlueShield of Minnesota and continues to support pediatric practices in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. He currently sees patients in the Minneapolis area as well. He also serves as an assistant professor in the department of pediatrics at the University of Minnesota.

A crusader about the danger of second hand smoke on children, Dr. Dehnel testified before legislators and local community leaders early in the 2000s. His efforts led to city ordinances that banned smoking in several cities and a county in the Minneapolis area, and later led to a state-wide smoking ban in 2007.  

Dr. Dehnel has served on the board of directors and held other leadership positions for the Twin Cities Medical Society since 2002. As current president of the society, he works with state healthy living programs to reduce childhood obesity. He also partnered with the National Initiative for Children’s Healthcare Quality and the American Academy of Pediatrics to develop the necessary information for physicians to work with families to help their children lead healthier lives.

Dr. Dehnel received his undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of Minnesota. He went on to do his residency in pediatrics at the University of Minnesota hospitals and clinics.

# # #

Media Contact:
Liz Magsig

AMA Media Relations
(202) 789-7419

About the American Medical Association (AMA)
The American Medical Association helps doctors help patients by uniting physicians nationwide to work on the most important professional, public health and health policy issues. The nation’s largest physician organization plays a leading role in shaping the future of medicine. For more information on the AMA, please visit www.ama-assn.org.


About Us

About the American Medical Association (AMA) Since 1847 the American Medical Association has had one mission: to promote the art and science of medicine and the betterment of public health. Today, the core strategy used to carry out this mission is our concerted effort to help doctors help patients. We do this by uniting physicians nationwide to work on the most important professional and public health issues. In 2011 our strategic plan focuses on five areas that encompass the central elements in health system reform: Access to care Quality of care Cost of health care Prevention and wellness Payment models Vist the AMA's 2011 strategic plan at: http://www.ama-assn.org/ama/pub/about-ama/strategic-issues.page These topics represent the major areas of emphasis in which the AMA carries out its mission in the current environment. Our proposed actions are not only directed at solving reform issues at the policy level, but also at helping physicians adapt to—and adopt—changes in a productive way. To learn more about how the AMA is moving medicine forward, read our flyer at: http://www.ama-assn.org/resources/doc/about-ama/moving-medicine-forward.pdf.

Documents & Links