Gary D. Josephson, M.D., M.B.A., B.A.’86
Caring for “Our Most Precious Assets”
By Carol Olechowski
“Children are our most precious assets and will mold the future of our world,” says Nemours Children’s Clinic pediatric ear, nose, throat, head and neck surgeon and Department of Surgery Chair Gary D. Josephson. His work as both healthcare provider at the Jacksonville, Fla., clinic and child advocate underscores his commitment to youngsters.
Josephson, former division chief of Pediatric Otolaryngology and assistant professor of otolaryngology, pediatrics, and anesthesiology at the University of Miami School of Medicine, joined Nemours in 2000, intrigued by its “mission of caring for children regardless of their families’ ability to pay for their care. The Nemours Foundation was set up by the late Alfred I. DuPont, who left a trust in perpetuity to care for all children in both Delaware, his home state, and in Florida, where he spent time vacationing.”
At Nemours, Josephson specializes in airway and sinus disease in children. His other contributions to the medical field include numerous publications, such as the 2005 textbook Complications in Pediatric Otolaryngology, often used and referenced by medical facilities and physicians. Josephson has developed several surgical instruments that bear his name and are currently used in the operating theater. He also is an associate professor of otolaryngology at the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine.
“I feel I still have a lot to give,” adds Josephson, whose office is filled with beautiful cards, drawings and words of appreciation from the children and families he cares for. He sits on numerous boards and committees that assure children “receive the care they need and deserve. The clinical side of medicine is still closest to my heart. When I change a child’s life medically, allowing him or her to lead a more normal life, have fun and become a productive member of society, I know I am making a difference. I feel blessed to have been given the opportunities afforded me, and I am committed to using these skill sets to give others opportunity, as well.”
Josephson’s University at Albany undergraduate experience – he majored in biology and minored in English and psychology – “provided a strong foundation and direction for my current career. He attended medical school at the State University of New York in Brooklyn, graduating in 1990 with honors for distinction in research. Josephson went on to do general surgery training at the Beth Israel Medical Center in Manhattan, then otolaryngology training at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary. Convinced that his future lay in working with children and “giving them the best opportunities for long, successful, healthy lives,” Josephson completed a pediatric otolaryngology fellowship at the University of Virginia.
Several years ago, he earned a professional master’s in business administration from the University of Massachusetts. “The field of medicine is changing rapidly,” Josephson points out, and the degree “allows me to better understand the business side of medicine. Although at Nemours we are fortunate to have a trust that supports our mission, physicians need to be more fiscally responsible as resources become tighter. We have to be able to provide more and better care, while reducing the bottom line. This is a challenge, to say the least, but it’s doable.”
Josephson, who describes himself as “very spiritual,” has “other passions” aside from work: “my wonderful wife, Patricia, a University of Florida pediatrician, and my two children, Samantha, 10; and Grayson, 7.” He enjoys outdoor activities and is an avid competitive slalom water skier. “The sport allows me to stay focused, physically fit and well balanced,” Josephson says.