The American Health Council welcomes Heidi Schwarz, MD, FAAN, to its Board of Physicians. Showing exemplary qualities of medical prowess, Dr. Schwarz, who is a Board Certified Neurologist, is being recognized for her skills in Guideline and Quality Measure Development and Team-Based Care. She has been with the University of Rochester Medical Center as their Professor of Clinical Neurology for the past three years, giving 34 years in total to the healthcare community. The University of Rochester Medical Center is one of the nation’s top academic medical centers that specialize in Health Research, Teaching, Patient Care and Community Outreach Missions.
After first attending the Mount Holyoke College in pursuit of a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry, Dr. Schwarz enrolled in the Medical Program at the University of Rochester. There, she earned her Medical Degree in 1983. Following her graduation, she was offered a Fellowship in Movement and Inherited Neurological Disease at the University of Rochester’s Medical Center. Upon the fellowship’s completion, she received an offer for a place of Residency in Neurology at the same facility.
Knowing that doctors had the ability to make major life impacts for their patients was the deciding factor for Dr. Schwarz when she chose her career path. She felt she wanted to dedicate herself towards making a difference in her patients’ lives and do what she could to help them.
Dr. Schwarz’s clinical attributes stem from her clinical success as well as the support she has received from her wonderful mentors. She has benefited greatly from the collegial relationships she established during the time she has spent at the American Academy of Neurology where she held the role of Chairperson on their Practice Committee. She also holds a position on the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Neurology, which has given her the privilege of participating in policy initiatives that helped shape their specialty.
Each day, Dr. Schwarz primarily focuses on headache medicine, but she also supervises other neurologist residents in outpatient and general neurology. She spends a significant amount of time teaching ambitious medical students and her fellow Residents about updated procedures and research studies in her area of expertise. She also conducts research through clinical trials on Huntington’s Disease but her most recent focus has been on Telemedicine in Parkinson’s Disease and Burnout and Resilience in Neurology.
Dr. Schwarz is proud of her participation in four published clinical trials in Telemedicine and Parkinson’s Disease and has also completed three publications on the American Academy of Neurology’s Survey on Burnout. She has also given numerous presentations in local and national settings on burnout, resilience, and team-based care.
Throughout her career, Dr. Schwarz received an array of accolades, including the American Medical Women’s Association Award, the Sigma Xi Award at Mount Holyoke College, Best Mentor Award, AD Baker Award, Resident Award for Neurology Faculty at University of Rochester Medical Center, Senior Neurology Faculty Award at URMC and the AB Baker Teaching Award at the American Academy of Neurology. She was named the Sarah Williston Scholar and Mary Lyons Scholar by the Mount Holyoke College, and received the Mary Dole Scholarship from MHC after graduation. Additionally, Dr. Schwarz received Magna Cum Laude with a Degree in Chemistry.
Dr. Schwarz’s adversity and nuisances with gender discrimination throughout her career have only added to her personal achievements, as she has become a well-respected medical professional. She promised herself that she would never allow others to undermine her own sense of self or deter her from her own goals and aspirations. Having endured these obstacles has only taught her to value her capabilities and to never let someone’s judgment affect the opportunities made available to her.
As a seasoned medical professional, Dr. Schwarz has become affiliated with a number of medical groups that are dedicated to making more advancements for their patients. These groups include the American Headache Society, Alpha Omega Alpha (and previous councilor for the Zeta Chapter at University of Rochester Medical School), Canandaigua Medical Society, and the American Academy of Neurology.
Professional goals for Dr. Schwarz in years to come include advancing headache education among other healthcare professionals, involving herself in more clinical research regarding new headache treatments, addressing the organizational issues contributing to Burnout in Medicine and Neurology, while advocating for the highest quality patient-centered care in Neurology.
In her free time, Dr. Schwarz enjoys spending time with her family, biking, swimming, skiing, and cooking.
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- One of the nation’s top academic medical centers, the University of Rochester Medical Center forms the centerpiece of the University’s health research, teaching, patient care and community outreach missions.
- Three Years in her Current Role, with 34 years in the Healthcare Industry.
- Expertise in Guideline and Quality Measure Development and Team-Based Care.
Awards & Honors
- Sarah Williston Scholar
- Mary Lyons Scholar at Mount Holyoke College
- Received the Sigma Xi award at Mount Holyoke College
- Magna Cum Laude with a Degree in Chemistry
- Mary Dole Scholarship from Mount Holyoke College
- Received the American Medical Women’s Association Award
- AB Baker Teaching Award at the AAN