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Health Care Heroes: Physician

By Staff Reports, posted Oct 20, 2017
Here are the finalists in the 2017 Health Care Heroes Physician category.

Honors a physician whose performance is considered exemplary by patients, peers and other health care providers.


Joanne “Anne” Allen

TITLE: Doctor

ORGANIZATION: Allen Spine and Sports Medicine and EmergeOrtho

WHAT THE NOMINATOR SAID: “For as long as I can remember, my sister has had a tireless passion for her patients and her field. Anne travels all over the country and the world teaching and learning all she can about sports medicine.

She has been a team doctor for USA Olympic parasailing teams and in other capacities every four years since 1996, participating in nine different Olympic and Paralympic winter and summer games.

Almost weekly someone tells me how much they love my sister and how much better she has made them feel. She is a strong and brilliant lady who flourishes in a field that has long been dominated by male doctors.”

Jonathan Allen, brother

MORE ABOUT THE NOMINEE: Allen is a N.C. Medical Society member, past president of the New Hanover-Pender County Medical Society and one of the UNCW team physicians working with the men’s soccer team.

She also works with local high schools on sports concussion management. She’s a board-certified physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist at EmergeOrtho and last year was elected as trustee for medicine on the American College of Sports Medicine Board of Trustees.


Catherine Daum

TITLE: Doctor/internist

ORGANIZATION: Wilmington Health

WHAT THE NOMINATOR SAID: “Dr. Catherine Daum saved my life! In the fall of 2011 I was a 31-year-old wife and mother, I worked full time as a surgery scheduler with a large ophthalmology practice and I was a fulltime college student half way through my MBA. All was right with the world until the day I felt a lump in my left breast and a strange sensation under my left arm. I immediately made an appointment with my physician at the time to be seen since every generation in my family has had multiple cases of breast cancer. When I went to my appointment, I was told that I had nothing to worry about, my family history was not that concerning and I was too young to have breast cancer. The physician felt there was no reason to order a mammogram and insurance would not pay for one.

A co-worker recommended Dr. Daum. She was so wonderful and actually took the time to listen to me and my family history, and most importantly my intuition. I knew it was cancer. I had the mammogram and met with the surgeon and after the biopsy it was confirmed that I had breast cancer.

My road after that was filled with surgeries, doctor’s appointments and healing, but I was alive. I am alive today because of Dr. Catherine Daum.”

Sarah Snyder, patient


Scott Visser

TITLE: Doctor

ORGANIZATION: Wilmington Health

WHAT THE NOMINATOR SAID: “Dr. Visser is a caring individual who goes out of his way to provide quality health care for everyone. He is compassionate and thoughtful.

He remembers his patients and personal information they have shared with him over the years such as family info, etc.

I have watched him diagnose something that other doctors have not been able to determine. He is a great person as well as doctor.”

Cathy Smith, Wilmington Health Family Medicine CMA

MORE ABOUT THE NOMINEE: Visser received his medical degree from the University of Virginia School of Medicine and has been in practice for more than 20 years.

He also received his undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia, a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry with honors.

Visser completed his residency in family medicine at Winston-Salem’s Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, then called N.C. Baptist Hospital.

He is board certified by the American Board of Family Medicine.
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