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Dr. Andrés Smith
Chula Vista, Calif. — Dr. Andrés Smith, emergency services medical director at Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center, is a recipient of the Mexican Consulate of San Diego's "Mexicans in San Diego" Award. On Sept. 10, Dr. Smith will be recognized for his extraordinary contributions to the medical communities of San Diego and Mexico. Prior recipients include community leaders, teachers, scientists, athletes and a Nobel Prize winner.
The award coincides with the Mexican Consulate's 133rd year in San Diego and the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Puebla. Nominations were accepted in three categories: individuals who have made contributions to the development of San Diego, individuals with outstanding careers in their field, and individuals who have made significant humanitarian contributions in the region. Dr. Smith's storied health care career made him an ideal candidate in all three categories.
From delivering a baby on the floor of a woman's house as an ambulance driver while in college to overseeing the massive expansion of Sharp Chula Vista's emergency department (ED) to performing lifesaving missions with Sharp's International Patient Services Program, Dr. Smith has inspired myriad improvements to emergency care on both sides of the border.
"Dr. Smith is an invaluable asset to our program," said International Patient Services Program Director Jacquie Schwoerke. "He continues to develop and strengthen partnerships with physicians and hospitals around the world to create a better global health care experience."
Dr. Smith was born in Tijuana and raised in Chula Vista. He attended medical school at University of Illinois College of Medicine and completed additional training at Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science, knowing he would return to his community.
Today, he serves as medical director of Sharp Chula Vista's Emergency Services and Sharp's International Patient Services Program and as vice president of the Mexican Red Cross board of directors, the Cruz Roja Hospital in Tijuana and the Tijuana Emergency Medical Services board of directors. Despite his importance, he remains at the front lines of care, personally helping to treat the more than 50,000 patients who seek emergency care at Sharp Chula Vista each year.
"I'm from this community," Dr. Smith said. "I've treated friends, family members and neighbors. I have a deep sense of pride in my community."
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