Howard Yonas, MD
Howard Yonas, MD, is chair of the UNM Department of Neurosurgery.
Credit: John Arnold

Howard Yonas, MD, has received the 2017 Outstanding Individual RAISE Award by the National Stroke Association for his work promoting stroke awareness and state-of-the-art treatment options for stroke patients in New Mexico.

Since joining UNM, Yonas has initiated several projects to improve the health of New Mexicans, including the development of a 24-bed state-of-the-art Neurosciences Intensive Care Unit at UNM Hospital; a multi-specialty neuroscience outpatient clinic; and a statewide telemedicine network for the evaluation and management of acute stroke. According to the association, Yonas’s achievements in promoting stroke awareness in New Mexico are unprecedented.

As chair of the UNM Department of Neurosurgery, Yonas has given countless lectures and education on stroke causes, treatments, rehabilitation and advances in the field, the association adds. He works with community members, government and not-for-profit agencies to find resources and help stroke patients and their families. Yonas also led UNM Hospital to become stroke certified, and is currently leading efforts to receive comprehensive stroke status.

“I came to New Mexico because there was a need,” Yonas says. “Stroke strikes in the heart of Albuquerque and in the furthest reaches of our state. We’re doing our best to bring world class care to every patient in New Mexico, and those efforts will continue in earnest.”

The Raising Awareness in Stroke Excellence (RAISE) Awards annually recognize individuals and groups from across the country for taking stroke awareness activities to new heights. Awards are given in several categories and recognize people engaged in community-level awareness activities directly supporting the National Stroke Association’s mission. This year, eight award winners were named, representing individuals and groups chosen from more than 250 nominations.