13 best physicians of 2017, as named by Medscape

As it does each year, Medscape has recognized 26 of the best and worst physicians in medicine, healthcare, research and health policy.

The "best" include leaders and groundbreakers in psychiatry, oncology and health economics, whereas the "worst" include those who faced criminal charges from murder to Medicare fraud.

Here's who made the "best" category.

"Best" of 2017

  • Robert Smith, MD. Smith received the Medal of Valor from the American Medical Association for delivering consistent healthcare to African Americans and those with little access during the Freedom Summer of 1964 in Mississippi.

  • Phyllis Harrison-Ross, MD. Harrison-Ross, who died at 80 January 16, led efforts to design rehabilitation and therapy services for children with severe developmental, emotional and physical disabilities; served on President Richard Nixon's National Advisory Council for Drug Abuse Prevention; and helped found the New York City Federation of Mental Health.

  • Timothy Chuter, DM. Chuter was honored with the 2017 Jacobson Innovation Award from the American College of Surgeons for his work in the development of endovascular aneurysm repair.

  • Babatunde Osotimehin, MD. Osotimehin, who died at 68 June 4, was head of the United Nations Population Fund.

  • Angela Hartley Brodie, PhD. Brodie, who died June 7 at 82, pioneered treatment methods for hormone-positive breast cancer.

  • Tirej Brimo, DM. Brimo was a Syrian war refugee and is now a junior physician in the National Health Service in the north of England after starting to pursue his degree 10 years ago in Aleppo.

  • Liz O'Riordan. O'Riordan returned to her work as an attending oncoplastic breast surgeon in Suffolk, U.K., in late November for the first time since July 2015, when she was diagnosed with stage III breast cancer.

  • Peter C. Nowell, MD. Nowell, who died December 2016 at 88, was the co-discoverer of the first genetic defect proven to cause cancer.

  • Mark Wainberg, PhD. Wainberg, who died at 71 April 12, was an HIV/AIDS researcher and activist.

  • Eric Winer, MD. Winer, a breast cancer clinician and researcher from Boston, publicly announced this year he is infected with HIV.

  • Oliver Smithies, PhD. Smithies, who died January 10 at age 91, was a geneticist and biochemist who shared a Nobel Prize in 2007 for developing a gene targeting technique.

  • Uwe Reinhardt, PhD. Reinhardt, who died November 13 at 80, was a health economist and the James Madison professor of political economy and of economics at Princeton (N.J.) University.

  • Alex Wubbels, RN. Wubbels was arrested for protecting an unconscious patient from a police blood draw. Her arrest outraged the general public and the American Nurses Association. She received a $500,000 settlement over the incident.

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