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Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center - Houston, Texas

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VA Doctor Receives Prestigious Award

September 11, 2015

Dr. Roberto Casal, Director of the MEDVAMC's Bronchoscopy Lab and Director of the Interventional Pulmonary Program at Baylor College of Medicine will receive the 2015 George McLennan Memorial Award for Advances in Interventional Pulmonology.

An Interventional Pulmonologist at the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center (MEDVAMC) in Houston has been named the winner of a prestigious American Association for Bronchology and Interventional Pulmonology (AABIP) award.  Dr. Roberto Casal, Director of the MEDVAMC’s Bronchoscopy Lab and Director of the Interventional Pulmonary Program at Baylor College of Medicine, will receive the 2015 George McLennan Memorial Award for Advances in Interventional Pulmonology at a conference next month.  This prestigious award is presented to individuals for their contributions to the field of interventional pulmonology and who are judged by their peers to have a high likelihood of continued success.

“Dr. Casal is a dedicated, respected clinician and a well-known leader in the field of interventional pulmonology, both nationally and internationally,” said Dr. Bykem Bozkurt, Chief of Medicine at the MEDVAMC.  “He has been published in numerous journals and serves in leadership positions for the AABIP and the World Association for Bronchology and Interventional Pulmonology.   The MEDVAMC and our patients are fortunate to have a clinician of his caliber at our Medical Center.”

Casal has been at the MEDVAMC since 2009.  He was instrumental in establishing the Interventional Pulmonology Service at the Medical Center and effectively run the facility’s busy Bronchology Lab.  In addition to being recognized by his peers for excellent patient care, Casal is a leading researcher in his field.  He has presented at numerous national and international conferences and been published in numerous medical journals including the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine and CHEST.  He was also actively involved in the writing of the first clinical guidelines for the use of endobronchial ultrasound, a minimally invasive bronchoscopic technique utilized to diagnose and stage patients with lung cancer.

According to Casal, he considers it an honor to care for the men and women who have served in the U.S. military.  “I am privileged to be able to apply the latest medical principles and practices here at the VA,” he said.   “The most rewarding part of my job is making a difference in the lives of our Veteran patients.”

Casal  is the youngest recipient of this prestigious award.  Geoffrey McLennan was  a professor and scholar in pulmonary medicine, radiology and biomedical engineering and made significant advances in the practice of interventional pulmonology in his career.  He died prematurely in 2010.