Michael A. Seffinger, DO, FAAFP, of Pomona, California, received the highest honor that the American Academy of Osteopathy (AAO) awards on March 19 during its Convocation in Orlando, Florida. Named the Andrew Taylor Still Medallion of Honor, the award is given to AAO members who have exhibited an exceptional understanding and application of osteopathic principles and concepts. The award is named after Andrew Taylor Still, MD, DO, the founder of osteopathic medicine.
“It is indeed a great honor to be the recipient of the A.T. Still Medallion and to join the esteemed list of past honorees who have been my inspiration, my mentors, my guideposts and upon whose shoulders I stand,” said Dr. Seffinger.
From chairing the Department of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine and Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (NMM-OMM) at the Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine in Pomona to serving as an associate editor of The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association (JAOA), Dr. Seffinger has served the osteopathic profession at all levels for many years.
A 1988 graduate of the Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine in East Lansing, Dr. Seffinger is board certified in NMM-OMM and in family medicine. He holds special proficiency in osteopathy in the cranial field.
Dr. Seffinger served as vice chair of the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) Bureau of Osteopathic Clinical Education and Research when it developed the AOA’s Guidelines for OMT for Patients with Low Back Pain. He is executive editor and author of the Foundations of Osteopathic Medicine textbook which is required at many osteopathic colleges for their medical students, and co-author of Evidence Based Manual Medicine, written for all clinicians interested in manipulation for common musculoskeletal problems.
As an associate editor of the JAOA, Dr. Seffinger writes the quarterly column “The Somatic Connection.” He is the former managing editor of the California DO: The Journal of the Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons of California (OPSC). His latest publications, The Merger: MDs and DOs in California and Resurgence: Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons of California, chronicle the history of the relationship between the physician groups, including the pivotal role of osteopathic manipulative treatment education, research and practice in their relations at all levels.
A former member of the OPSC Board of Directors, Dr. Seffinger was named the 2005 Most Valuable Physician. He was inducted into the AOA Mentors Hall of Fame in 2007.
Dr. Seffinger served as the Academy’s 2011-12 president, is on the Board of Governors and chairs the AAO’s Louisa Burns Osteopathic Research Committee. He previously served on the AAO’s Board of Trustees, the Nominating, International Affairs and Investment Committees and as an Osteopathic Postdoctoral Teaching Institutes liaison.
Dr. Seffinger said, “This profession has a habit of giving out singular awards, but the truth is … all of us are here because our mentors brought us along, and we are bringing along others behind us. … It is truly humbling and an awesome privilege to be of service to this Academy that gave me a home, raised me from an inquisitive student to a full-fledged and proud osteopathic physician.”