Dr. John LaMancuso received a distinguished award from WCA Hospital on Wednesday.
Every year, WCA honors an outstanding physician from Chautauqua County with its Physician of the Year award. The award recognizes a distinguished physician leader for their dedication to excellence in patient care, their service to WCA and continued academic effort and demonstrated service to the community.
LaMancuso, a Jamestown native, specializes in the medical care of adult men and women in the community, and is co-founder, vice-chairman and physician partner of Jamestown Area Medical Associates.
Pictured from left are Dr. Patrick Collins, president of medical staff; Dr. John LaMancuso; and Betsy Wright, president of WCA Hospital at the Doctor’s Day celebration at WCA Hospital on Wednesday. Lamancuso was the recipient of the ninth-annual Physician of the Year Award.
P-J photo by Ryan Atkins
With an extensive resume that has included stints as president-elect of the WCA medical staff, trustee of the WCA board of directors and board member of the Chautauqua County Integrated Delivery System of the Chautauqua County Health Network, LaMancuso has been a long-standing physician leader in the area.
He joined WCA in 1982 after completing his residency in internal medicine at the Erie County Medical Center, Buffalo Veteran's Administration Medical Center and Buffalo General Hospital.
"I really appreciate being chosen for this award," said LaMancuso at Wednesday's Doctor's Day celebration. "When I was being raised near WCA as a kid, I lived in a house that bordered the physician parking lot. I grew up in this area, and I was always within a stone's throw of the hospital."
Not only did LaMancuso live in the area, but he also had relatives who worked for WCA. His grandmother worked in the laundry room at WCA, and an aunt worked on 3A for many years.
"She was just a wonderful woman and an advocate of the hospital," said Lamancuso of his aunt. "I've been fortunate in that way, and I really appreciate this award. It's not an easy life to do what I do, but I've made that choice, and I'm good with it. I'm very fortunate that I have a great family, great friends and to have grown up in a great town. When I think about Jamestown, people knock it, but if you look at things like the Roger Tory Peterson legacy, Lucille Ball, our proximity to Chautauqua Institution - you can't ask for a better place. I feel blessed, and I've always considered myself to be a lucky guy, and that continues today. I want to thank everyone. I think it's really important to say that I'm only as good as the specialists that I work with. My practice really revolves around the quality of those guys."
According to Betsy Wright, president of WCA Hospital, this marked the ninth year that the award has been given out, with past winners including: Dr. Bert Rappole, Dr. Richard Lisciandro, Dr. Ranjit Laha, Dr. Sawarah Bambrah, Dr. Robert Ungerer, Dr. Billy Toms, Dr. Bhagwandas Sutaria and Dr. Randall Swanson.
The physician is chosen by the past presidents of the medical staff, along with the current president of the medical staff, who are elected by the entire medical staff at WCA. Wright said that those physicians get together and look for a physician who exemplifies high quality patient care, who is a supportive, integral part of the WCA community, who is a leader within the medical staff, and who is actively involved in the surrounding community as well.
"I think Dr. Lamancuso exemplifies all of those qualities that they're looking for," said Wright. "He's been a long-time member of the medical staff, born and raised right here in the neighborhood of the hospital, and he's very dedicated to high-quality patient care. He's always working with the hospital to look for ways to improve patient care and improve access to care. Dr. Lamancuso is also very, very active in the community - a big proponent of Jamestown. He's been the president of the medical staff in the past, a hospital board member, and a chair of many committees, and he's always looking for a way to ensure that there is quality health care in our community."
Following the presentation of the award, keynote speaker Mary S. Hajdu, Esq., partner and practicing attorney for Burgett & Robbins, delivered a speech entitled "The Truth About Fracking." The talk covered topics including natural gas drilling in southwestern New York and the possibility of high-volume horizontal fracturing in the Utica shale. Music at the event was provided by pianist Lucille Miller.