Global Health Nexus, Winter 2003

Dr. Stephen Bergen Honored with VHA Excellence in Clinical Care Leadership Award

First Dentist To Receive Award

Dr. Stephen F. Bergen, ’70, Chief of the Dental Service, Veterans Administration New York Harbor Healthcare System, and a Professor of Prosthodontics and of Hospital Dentistry at NYU Dentistry, is the 2002 winner of the prestigious Veterans Health Administration Excellence in Clinical Care Leadership Award, presented to him (above left) by Dr. Jonathan Perlin, VA Deputy Undersecretary for Health. Dr. Bergen is the first dentist ever to receive this award. He has devoted more than 30 years to serving and improving the quality of health care for veterans.

The Leadership Award is presented annually to a health care practitioner in a leadership position who has demonstrated excellence through exceptional support for direct patient care providers on a local, network, and/ or national level. The award honors Dr. Mark Wolcott, a former VHA Chief Medical Director for Clinical Affairs and Chief of Research in Surgery.

Dr. Bergen heads the largest VA dental residency program in the nation. In 1983, he developed the VHA’s first computerized dental database, which is used today to store patient records throughout the VHA network, an achievement for which he received national recognition.

“I’m honored that the VA has chosen to recognize my contributions to clinical care for veterans, information management, and dental education in such a meaningful way. And I’m particularly gratified that I’ve been able to mentor other practitioners and help them to develop their own leadership skills.” In addition to administering the dental residency program, Dr. Bergen serves on the Board of Directors of the Leadership VA Alumni Association and is a mentor with the VA Health Care Leadership Institute.