Renowned Lahey Clinic Surgeon John Braasch, MD, PhD, Honored

Release Date: 09/20/2007

Rose Lewis
Manager, Media Relations
Phone: (781) 744-5440

Renowned Lahey Clinic Surgeon John Braasch, MD, PhD, Honored

BURLINGTON MA—John Braasch, MD, PhD, former chair of the Department of Surgery at Lahey Clinic, has been honored with the Mayo Clinic Distinguished Alumni Award for his outstanding leadership in hepatobiliary and pancreatic surgery and his dedication in training young physicians.

Dr. Braasch began his career at Lahey Clinic in 1957. He led the department of surgery for a dozen years from 1971-1983. He was also a director of the American Board of Surgery for six years. He was an assistant clinical professor of surgery at Harvard Medical School and Tufts University School of Medicine.

“Dr. Braasch was a terrific surgeon and his patients loved him,” said Lahey Clinic President and Chief Executive Officer David M. Barrett, MD. “Dr. Braasch was also a wonderful teacher. He was devoted to training countless medical residents who have gone on to become some of the best surgeons in the country.”

David Schoetz, Jr., MD, professor of surgery and chair of the Department of Medical Education at Lahey Clinic has known Dr. Braasch for 25 years. “Dr. Braasch has achieved all one can achieve as a general surgeon in the United States and the world. He has set a wonderful example for all of us in medicine.”

Dr. Braasch is the son of one of the original Mayo Clinic staff members -- a distinguished urologic surgeon and inventor of the Braasch cystoscope but determined to forge his own path, the young Dr. Braasch earned multiple degrees in an era when doing so was out of the ordinary.

Robert Wise, MD, and former CEO of Lahey Clinic, has been a colleague of Dr. Braasch at the Lahey Clinic Foundation since 1957. “Throughout his career, Dr. Braasch remained a student and became one of the greatest teachers at Lahey Clinic. His continual search for excellence in practice and teaching has finally returned him to his early love of research. In his retirement, he works on a voluntary basis in Lahey Clinic's Cell and Molecular Biology Laboratory.”

Dr. Braasch was responsible for Lahey Clinic's first general surgery residency program. “Almost single-handedly establishing an approved surgical residency at Lahey Clinic was achieving the impossible,” says F. Henry Ellis, Jr., MD, PhD, clinical professor of surgery emeritus, Harvard Medical School. “All of the ‘experts' considered this to be impossible in view of the fact that the program at the time was a free-standing one, without university affiliation.”

This is a second honor for Dr. Braasch from the Mayo Alumni Association. Dr. Braasch won the prize for original research back in 1955.

About Lahey Clinic
Lahey Clinic, a physician-led, nonprofit group practice, is world-renowned for innovative technology, pioneering medical treatment, and leading-edge research. A teaching hospital of Tufts University School of Medicine, the Clinic provides quality health care in virtually every specialty and subspecialty, from primary care to cancer diagnosis and treatment to kidney and liver transplantation.