Tom Waring, the Wire
The American Medical Association presented state Rep. Gene DiGirolamo with the Dr. Nathan Davis Award for Outstanding Government Service.
DiGirolamo was selected for the AMA’s top government service award for his work promoting public health and combatting the misuse and abuse of prescription opioids.
“It is an honor to recognize Rep. DiGirolamo for his contributions to a coordinated public health strategy that addresses Pennsylvania’s opioid epidemic,” said Dr. Stephen R. Permut, AMA’s chairman. “He has championed state solutions that enhance patient care, identify potential signs of prescription drug abuse, and save lives from opioid overdoses.”
The award recognizes elected and career officials in federal, state or municipal service whose outstanding contributions have promoted the art and science of medicine and the betterment of public health.
DiGirolamo was presented with the award at a Feb. 23 ceremony in Washington, D.C. as part of the AMA’s National Advocacy Conference.
Specifically, DiGirolamo, who serves as chairman of the House Human Services Committee, was honored with the Outstanding Member of a State Legislature Award.
In the nomination for the award, DiGirolamo was cited for his dedication to advocacy for addiction treatment. During his tenure in the House, he has authored legislation to create the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs to streamline and better coordinate services, and helped pass the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program.
“I cannot tell you how humbled, yet excited, I am to be receiving this national honor,” DiGirolamo said. “My greatest reward has been helping people, whether they are working to overcome addiction or have access to programs and services to help them live better, healthier lives.
“It is an honor to be able to reach so many more people through my service as the chairman of the House Human Services Committee, where our reach can extend beyond the 18th District and into every corner of the commonwealth. I also want to thank all of the people I’ve encountered during my time in the state House, because it’s through their experiences that I’ve been able to work with so many partners to increase funding or create positive public policy.”
DiGirolamo was one of eight government officials to be honored. The others included former U.S. House Speaker John Boehner; House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi; and Dr. Ron Stollings, a West Virginia state senator; a former surgeon general of the U.S. Air Force; and a former director within the Food and Drug Administration.