The 2014 Hastings Center Cunniff-Dixon Physician Awards in the early-career category honor Elise C. Carey, MD, FAAHPM, chair of the Section of Palliative Medicine, Division of General Internal Medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. She was the founding program director of the Hospice and Palliative Medicine Fellowship at Mayo Clinic Rochester, and she continues to direct the palliative medicine rotation for the Internal Medicine Residency Program. She has gained recognition for being an emerging national leader in palliative care education.

Dr. Carey joined Mayo Clinic in 2007 to advance Mayo Clinic’s palliative care program. Under her leadership the program gained essential resources and expanded to provide 24/7 coverage, an outpatient palliative care clinic, and an accredited fellowship program. Among her accomplishments, she broadened the reach of palliative care services from inpatients and oncology patients to patients with multiple conditions throughout the institution. Beyond Mayo, Dr. Carey has worked to improve curricula for hospice and palliative care fellows from across the upper Midwest by co-authoring and leading a two-day workshop called “PalliTALK: Improving the Way We Communicate with Seriously Ill Patients.”

She has also distinguished herself nationally. She is currently chair of the annual assembly planning committee for the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, and she serves on academy’s education and training strategic coordinating committee and the clinical education committee. Previously, she chaired the fellowship taskforce. In addition, she was selected to be in LEAD, the association’s highly competitive national faculty development and leadership program.

“She is a rising star in the discipline, a first-rate clinician, an inspiring and innovative teacher, and someone who is rapidly acquiring the research skills she needs to advance the field further,” wrote her nominator, Barbara Koenig, PhD, executive director and senior research scholar at the Stanford University Center for Biomedical Ethics, formerly professor at the Mayo Clinic’s Biomedical Ethics Research Program. “I have rarely encountered anyone of her quality.”

Dr. Carey received her medical degree from the Brown-Dartmouth Program in Medicine in 1998.