The Academy is pleased to present Stephen A. Kamenetzky, MD with the Guest of Honor Award. Selected by the president each year, these individuals are honored for significant contributions to ophthalmology and the Academy.
We recognize Dr. Kamenetzky for his commitment to the Academy as a volunteer for more than 30 years. He has quietly supported the profession to ensure its financial stability and organizational sustainability, so that all of ophthalmology can continue to develop robust educational and quality-improvement programs that enhance patient care. He served as the chair of the Academy’s inaugural Practice Management Committee, and is currently a consultant to the Academy’s Health Policy Committee, chair of the CPT coding modules project, and the Academy’s alternate advisor for the AMA’s Relative Value-Scale Update Committee (RUC). During the many years he represented the Academy on the RUC, he helped to devise and present strategies for preserving and enhancing Medicare payments for ophthalmic services in the face of significant budgetary and legislative pressures. Dr. Kamenetsky has also held several leadership roles within the Ophthalmic Mutual Insurance Company, as treasurer, chair of the Finance Committee, and a member of the Board of Directors.
A native of St. Louis, Dr. Kamenetzky received his medical degree from Washington University School of Medicine in 1970. He interned at Beth Israel Hospital in Boston and then spent two years at the National Institutes of Health. After a residency in ophthalmology at Washington University, he worked in St. Louis as a comprehensive ophthalmologist in private practice for over 25 years. After retiring from practice, he served as a medical director for Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Missouri. Dr. Kamenetzky remains on the faculty of the Washington University department of ophthalmology as emeritus clinical professor of ophthalmology and visual science.
Community service has been an important part of Dr. Kamenetzky’s life as well. Alongside his wife of 48 years, Phyllis, Dr. Kamenetzky is a long-time volunteer in the Mentor St. Louis program for minority elementary grade students in the inner city. The Boys and Girls Clubs of America recognized the couple with the National Service to Youth Award. Dr. Kamenetzky also served on the Board of Directors of the Visiting Nurses Association of St. Louis and the Jewish Community Center. He is currently on the Board of Directors of the JCA charitable foundation, which serves the needs of the low-income elderly in the community.
Dr. Kamenetzky has been an Academy member for over 35 years, and received the Life Achievement Honor Award in 2015. Dr. Kamenetzky is a role model for all ophthalmologist volunteers with his brilliant insights, analysis, and humor.