Sunday, January 18, 2004

Doctor cares on the job, beyond

By Karen Vance
Enquirer contributor

[IMAGE] Christopher Lewis is a physician with Alliance Primary Care in Corryville.
(Glenn Hartong photo)
In 1967, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. said, "The time has come for us to civilize ourselves by the total, direct and immediate abolition of poverty."

Dr. Christopher Lewis lives by those words.

He considers them a command to be involved in his community - here and abroad.

"I feel that it's the responsibility of all African-Americans - particularly those who have achieved success in their lives - to give back to their community," the 29-year-old says.

Inspired as a boy by The Cosby Show, Lewis decided to become a doctor.

He graduated from Finneytown High School in 1992, went to Harvard and the University of Cincinnati Medical School. He joined the Alliance Primary Care practice in Clifton in 2003, serving diverse patients, from the wealthy to the uninsured.

"He's an outstanding physician," says Dr. Joseph Bateman, a colleague. "He's really done a wonderful job of getting out into the community and doing good work."

Lewis talks to middle and high school students through the Abstinence Education Network. And he's a volunteer assistant wrestling coach at Finneytown High.

But his concern for others is not just local.

After spending a month in Tanzania as part of his studies, Lewis is working to organize doctors, nurses and medical students to open a clinic there.

"I was moved so much by the people there, that I wanted to do something," he says.

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