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Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC) physical therapist Dr. Mary McVearry received the 2012 Rehabilitation Award from the Association of Military Surgeons of the United States (AMSUS) during a ceremony at Walter Reed Bethesda Jan. 29.

McVearry is a pelvic floor physical therapist who joined the Urogynecology Service in October 2009 at the former Walter Reed Army Medical Center as both a provider and educator with the Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery Fellowship. In February 2012, she earned certification as a women’s health clinical specialist. She is the only board certified pelvic floor physical therapist in the National Capital Area (NCA) Department of Defense system.

The physical therapist assists men and women in the rehabilitation of their pelvic floor function, working closely with providers from services such as colorectal, gastrointestinal, urology, physical medicine, gynecology/oncology, and pain management, in addition to numerous primary care providers in the NCA.

“The Association of Military Surgeons of the United States/Society of Federal Health Professionals 2012 Rehabilitation Award, [recognizes McVearry for] the therapy she provides that extends beyond the healing of the physical and encompasses the mental and spiritual rehabilitation of those in greatest need,” explained Rear Adm. Alton L. Stocks WRNMMC commander as he read the proclamation he presented to McVeary at the ceremony.

“This award means that I’m doing something that makes a difference, and that I’m doing something right,” McVearry said. “I’m thankful and I attribute a lot of this to being here at WRNMMC,” she added.

The doctor of physical therapy remembers receiving a call from Army Lt. Col. Johnny Wright from the Division Bureau of Gynecology offering her an interview, and ultimately the job at Walter Reed three-and one-half years ago.

“I never thought I would love working in military medicine as much as I have,” McVearry said. She went on to say about working at Walter Reed Bethesda, “You really get to practice in a way that you should. That’s enabled me to grow a lot.”

“She gives 110 percent to her job,” her supervisor, Army Lt. Col. Sandra Hernandez said. “She loves working with wounded warriors. She is the only person in OB/GYN who sees male [beneficiaries] and that’s a big population of wounded warriors.”

In addition to McVeary’s clinical work, the physical therapist is involved in Graduate Medical Education and research, both within the Urogynecology Service as well as with GYN Oncology, Stocks added. She is also a volunteer coordinator for an area free clinic which provides services for uninsured women suffering from pelvic floor disorders, and McVeary coaches a special-Olympics soccer team, which recently won the Maryland state championship.