Stewart C. Wang recognized for innovations in automotive safety

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAStewart Wang, M.D., Ph.D., director of Burn Surgery, receives public service award for work helping make cars safer

Stewart Wang, M.D., Ph.D., director of Burn Surgery, has been working towards great innovations for automotive medicine, and much of it has happened in a room filled with laptops in the Medical School.

On Wednesday, Aug. 8, in that same room, Wang was recognized for “his ability to foster automotive innovations and to make cars safer.” The award was presented by both the National Traffic Safety Administration and the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning and was in recognition of the work Wang has done as director of the International Center for Automotive Medicine.

ICAM includes researchers at the University of Michigan Trauma Burn Center, as well as biomechanics researchers and crash investigators at the U-M BioScience Division. Although it houses several ongoing projects, a major component of the research uses analytical morphomics and three-dimensional imaging data to create accurate computer models of the human body. The purpose of this is to better understand injuries from automobile accidents so they can be better treated and even prevented.

According to Michael L. Prince, director of the MOHSP, they can only nominate one person per year. In 2012, it was Wang. The award recognizes 15 individuals and organizations across the nation and the public service award is the highest honor that can be given by the NTSA to someone who is not an employee.

There was an award ceremony and luncheon at the 30th Annual Lifesavers Conference this year in Florida, but since Wang was unable to attend, the NTSA presented his award during a one of the monthly ICAM case reviews. Other awardees included a sorority and government officials. Wang was the only recipient from Michigan.

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