Dr. Henning Ansorg, the Santa Barbara County public health officer, has been recognized as the 2020 Physician of the Year by the Central Coast Medical Association.
In a CCMA news release, Dr. Ansorg was called the “obvious honoree” for this year due to his work amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Speaking with the News-Press, Dr. Ansorg expressed gratitude for being honored with the award.
“It feels very good. I feel validated by my local colleagues, and that’s always a nice thing,” he said.
He also praised his colleagues in the medical community, ranging from private clinicians to local hospitals, for effectively collaborating to take on the pandemic and for supporting his efforts with theirs throughout the health crisis.
“We really came together as a professional community,” Dr. Ansorg remarked.
Dr. Ansorg has served as Santa Barbara County public health officer since 2019, and prior to that, he was a staff physician at Santa Barbara County Health Care Center, where he started in 2016.
He started his medical career in Germany and graduated magna cum laude from medical school at Justus Liebig University in Giessen. After completing his family practice residency in Munich, he went into private practice in his native country for a decade before moving to the U.S.
In America, he first settled in Arizona. He completed his internal medicine residency at the University of Arizona and went into private practice in Sedona before relocating to Santa Barbara in 2016.
Dr. Ansorg was presented the Physician of the Year award in a virtual celebration, during which he was congratulated by his colleagues in the local medical community.
Dr. Kurt Ransohoff, the Sansum Clinic CEO and chief medical officer, said he couldn’t think of anyone more deserving of this year’s honor than Dr. Ansorg.
And Cottage Health infectious disease physician Dr. Lynn Fitzgibbons thanked the public health officer for being “a strong voice for us all.”
Dr. Van Do-Reynoso, Dr. Ansorg’s colleague and the director of the Public Health Department, thanked him for his dedication and commitment to “the best possible health outcomes for our community.”
After being congratulated by his fellow medical professionals, Dr. Ansorg thanked them for the honor and expressed gratitude for his colleagues’ efforts over the past few months.
Given his extensive involvement taking on the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Ansorg admitted to the News-Press that getting recognized as Physician of the Year didn’t come as that big of a surprise to him.
“Without these really extreme circumstances I would have been shocked to be honest to have been singled out for this award,” he said. “But given the extent of this health emergency, I wasn’t as surprised as I would have been otherwise.”