Hillsborough County Osteopathic Medical Society (HCOMS)

News and Notes

2018 Scholarship Information

Please follow this link for the application for the Kenneth E. Webster Scholarship. This scholarship is available to students from Hillsborough or Pasco county Florida, that will be attending an osteopathic medical school in Florida.  Please submit by November 20th.

Fall 2018 - Jamaica Clinic Reunion

Saturday, October 13, 2018 will be the Jamaica Clinic 10th Anniversary Reunion and Celebration.  It will be held at the Centre Club in the Westshore Grand at 7PM.  Please RSVP to Lisa at belliveau@aol.com or 727-581-9069.

Summer 2017
The team of osteopathic physicians from HCOMS that will be participating in our 9th Annual Jamaica Clinic were announced. They are: President Sasha Noe, DO, Ph.D., Past Presidents Lon Lynn, DO and Robert Norman, DO, and Clinic Coordinator Miranda Giusti Rhoades, DO. Included on the team will be fourteen medical students from LECOM-Bradenton, two nurses and several aides. This clinic will be held on July 15-22, 2017, at Treasure Beach, Jamaica.

​Dr. Sam Martino was presented a “Lifetime Membership” award for his thirty-five years as a member of this society. He has previously served on the HCOMS Board, as a Trustee on the FOMA Board, and as a delegate to the AOA House of Delegates. He has been in practice in the Riverview area of the county and plans to retire this year. Congratulations to him on a great career in osteopathic medicine as a family physician.

Summer 2015

Scholarship Information

Please follow this linkfor the application for the Kenneth E. Webster Scholarship. This scholarship is available to students from Hillsborough or Pasco county Florida, that will be attending an osteopathic medical school in Florida.  Please submit by November 1st.


I had the great privilege, along with Past President Joel Rose, DO, to represent HCOMS and FOMA at the AOA House of Delegates in Chicago. This is an exciting event to participate in the business decisions of the American Osteopathic Association. Then, on July 31-August 1, I served on the FOMA Executive Board and at the Trustees meeting to participate in the important decisions of our state association. I will report on these 
activities at our September meeting. 

Jamaica Clinic. We had four physicians, fourteen medical students, one nurse and two aides participate this year as they served over 250 patients. Of special note is that two of the physicians serving this year, Matthew Hyzy, DO and Omesh Singh, DO, were medical students at the first Jamaica Clinic eight years ago. Also, Dr. Robert Norman participated in this year’s clinic for his sixth such trip with this program.

I am pleased to inform our members, that this past year we have added fifiteen new members. This is the largest increase in several years, and we welcome those new members to our society and encourage them to participate in our events and activities. If you know of a prospective member in the community, please invite them to a meeting, or let the HCOMS office know so they can send them an invitation.

I hope each of you will make a special effort to join us at the next dinner on Thursday, September 10th.

Brett Scotch, DO
HCOMS President


Summer 2014


As we look to the coming activities of HCOMS, I sense a new optimism as the society moves forward in a positive direction. We can all be proud of another successful Jamaica Clinic led by Dr. Douglas Nelson. This year's contingent consists of five physicians, fourteen medical students, one resident and four aides. They will have provided medical services to about 250 patients . Thanks to the coordination of this program by Ken Webster and Janet Nichols. I am excited to announce our first ever "Special Reception" for new members of HCOMS. This event will be held at Eddie V's Restaurant across from International Mall. Please feel free to invite any non-member physicians to this social event. There are many prospective members in this county that we need to reach out to. Always a highlight dinner meeting is our annual visit to Donatello's Restaurant. This popular dinner venue always draws a great crowd that enjoys the atmosphere and gourmet food . This year's event is sponsored by Alere, and the guest speaker will be FOMA attorney Jason Winn who will bring us up-to -date on issues affecting the practice of medicine in this state, as well as the Accountable Care Act issues. You won't want to miss this event on Thursday, September llth . At this meeting we will also be recognizing our Jamaica Clinic participants . As we move forward , please check our website at www.hcoms.org for activities, updates, member news and new programs . We want to be the face of osteopathic medicine in this county, and your participation and support can bring about changes and new directions for our society. Please plan now t o join us on Thursday, September 11th at Donatello's. 

Brett Scotch, D.O., F.A.O.C.O.
HCOMS President

Spring 2014


August, 2013 I hope everyone is enjoying some family vacation time this summer. In just about three weeks students will be back in school and soon after we will be into our fall agenda. The first item on that agenda will be our General Membership Dinner Meeting on Thursday, September 12th, at the always popular Donatello’s Restaurant at 232 N. Dale Mabry Hwy. beginning with a social time at 7:00 P.M. followed by dinner at 7:45 P.M. We are pleased to have the Laser Spine Institute sponsoring this event. Dr. Michael Perry will be speaking on “Clinical Outcome Studies at Laser Spine Institute”. At this meeting we will be recognizing the doctors and students who participated this summer in our sixth summer Jamaica Clinic. Our own Drs. Robert Norman and James Vogler, along with two nurses and twelve medical students treated a record 264 patients. Dr. Ken Webster, Executive Director, and Janet Nichols, Clinic Project Founder, accompanied the delegation. We all can share pride in this program that has now served over 1400 patients since it began in 2007. I hope you will all make a special effort to attend the meeting at Donatello’s. Finally, I want to recognize Dr. and Mrs. Brett Scotch for their efforts on behalf of HCOMS. They both attended DO Day on the Hill in Washington, D.C. in March and DO Day in Tallahassee in April. Then in July, Brett served in the Florida delegation at the AOA House of Delegates Meeting in Chicago. They are truly involved and dedicated to the osteopathic profession. Thanks to Brett for representing HCOMS at these events. Fraternally, Douglas Nelson, DO President ______________________________________________________________________________________________________ 
HCOMS Golf Tourney A Success
  The 12th Annual HCOMS Scholarship Golf Tournament drew a great group of golfers at Westshore  Golf Club in May. Those participating enjoyed great weather, a pristine golf course, awards dinner and door prizes. Dr. Sam Scolaro had the winning best “net” team for the second year in a row, while Dr. Charles Dewberry’s team was the best team with the “low gross” score. Dr. Jesse Lynn, playing on his father Lon Lynn’s team won the “closest to the pin” competition. Other HCOMS players included Dr. Robert Norman, Dr. Ruben Valdez and Ken Webster, Executive Director and tournament coordinator. Funds from this event go into the HCOMS Scholarship Fund for Hillsborough County students attending a Florida osteopathic medical school. ______________________________________________________________________________________________________
​Robert Norman, DO Receives Certification by International Board of Medicine and Surgery
 Dr. Robert Norman is a US board-certified dermatologist who has been in practice for over 20 years. He is a faculty member for 5 medical schools and has been honored with numerous service and teaching awards, including Physician of the Year (2005) and Distinguished Service Award (2007) in Hillsborough County, Tampa, Florida, and Tampa Bay Medical Hero Award (2008).  Dr. Norman has written 23 books, including the recently published The Woman Who Lost Her Skin (and other Dermatological Tales) primarily based on articles he has written in Discover magazine, and Mother Nature, Father Time-Tales of Medicine.  He has been the editor of 4 textbooks on Geriatrics and Geriatric Dermatology and published over 100 articles in various major media publications.  Dr. Norman has a private practice and is the chief physician and owner of Dermatology Healthcare, founded in 1994, which delivers essential skin care services for nursing home patients. He provides many national and international lectures each year; in October, 2007 he was the section director and lecturer in Geriatric Dermatology at the World Congress of Dermatology in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Dr. Norman can be easily reached via www.drrobertnorman.com at patient education portal and website or via 813-880-7546 and skindrrob@aol.com.   --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
January 2013

​The Hillsborough County Osteopathic Medical Society is entering our fifty-second year of operation
. Just think, some of you weren’t even born until after that date. The early pioneers paved the way for us to become active osteopathic physicians with fewer barriers distracting us from the practice of medicine. It wasn’t until eleven years after our incorporation that we received equal licensing and access to all hospitals. Let us never forget such pioneers as Marcelino Oliva, DO, Angelo Pardo, DO, Margaret Raffa, DO, and Richard Mayer, DO, who founded this society. As we move into 2013, I am inviting and encouraging every osteopathic physician in Hillsborough County to join the society and become active in our programs. This is the closest osteopathic society to where you practice, and there are many benefits to maintaining your membership in this society. These are listed for your review in this publication. Our fiscal year is the same as the calendar year. Our society has four membership dinner meetings each year at excellent locations including Donatello’s Restaurant, Shula’s Restaurant, the Centre Club in the InterContinental Hotel, the Chart House and others. There is no cost to the members or their spouse or guest. We hold an annual golf tournament in May that supports our student scholarship fund. Our annual Jamaica Clinic trip in July has now served over 1,000 patients with no doctor or hospital within twenty-five miles. This past year we collected $3,300 to provide Christmas Dinner and gifts for the Our Lady of Hope orphanage in Mandeville, Jamaica. This year our goal is to invite every osteopathic physician in this county to join our society. Together we can do so much more for our patients and community. Many thanks for your interest in being a part of this great profession and our society. Fraternally, Douglas Nelson, DO President   __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ July 2012                            
Jamaican Medical Clinic Provides Needed Health Care The fifth annual summer Jamaican Medical Clinic, sponsored by the Hillsborough County Osteopathic Medical Society of Tampa, treated a record number of 261 patients providing much needed health care in the area of Treasure Beach, Jamaica that does not have any medical services within twenty-five miles. The medical team consisted of 3 physicians, 13 medical students, 2 nurses, and 2 aides.  The team conducted medical screenings, physicals, blood pressure and blood sugar checks, and special treatments depending on individual health matters.  Donated medical supplies were distributed to thos patients in need of further medical care. Leading the adventure for these clinics for the past five years was HCOMS Executive Director, Kenneth Webster, Ed.D. Attending physicians were Dr. James Vogler, Dr. Rowena Ravano and Dr. David Weiland.  Nurses assisting the clinic were Leslie Gibson and Kelly Sassano. Over the 5 year span of the project, which includes 3 midyear clinics as well, the medical teams have served over 1,200 patients in this area of Jamaica and have provided over $20,000 in medical supplies. LECOM-Bradenton medical students participating this year were:  Matthew Bakes, Meghan Cooper, Anthony Rossi, Rolando Cabrera, Gretchen Siefker, Michelle Winchell, Zachary Griggs, Brandi Manning, Brittany McCollum, Sean McCarty, Kristen Wetherell, Alexis Katz, and Miranda Guisti. were distributed to thos patients in need of further medical care. Leading the adventure for these clinics for the past five years was HCOMS Executive Director, Kenneth Webster, Ed.D. Attending physicians were Dr. James Vogler, Dr. Rowena Ravano and Dr. David Weiland.  Nurses assisting the clinic were Leslie Gibson and Kelly Sassano. Over the 5 year span of the project, which includes 3 midyear clinics as well, the medical teams have served over 1,200 patients in this area of Jamaica and have provided over $20,000 in medical supplies. LECOM-Bradenton medical students participating this year were:  Matthew Bakes, Meghan Cooper, Anthony Rossi, Rolando Cabrera, Gretchen Siefker, Michelle Winchell, Zachary Griggs, Brandi Manning, Brittany McCollum, Sean McCarty, Kristen Wetherell, Alexis Katz, and Miranda Guisti.  _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
April 2012
Upcoming Events  As we move into the spring season our thoughts turn to baseball, golf, tennis, swimming and other outdoor activities. We are fortunate to have such a great climate for participation in these events. At the forefront of our coming activities for spring will be our 13th Annual HCOMS Open Golf Tourney to be held on Wednesday, May 23rd at the Westchase Golf Club. It will begin at 1:30 P.M. and end around 6:00 P.M. with a dinner and awards. This is a four person best ball scramble event, so even those who don’t play golf often, can enjoy the scramble format. The dinner will be open to all members, whether you play golf that day or not. Just come out and enjoy some time together with your friends and colleagues. This should be a great social event. Our Jamaica Clinic Project is pretty well complete for our fifth year. This activity will be held July 14-21. We have four physicians, twelve medical students, a nurse, three aides and our coordinator Dr. Ken Webster. Last year the group provided services to 180 patients. Dr. James Vogler and his wife Jill will be joining the group this year. This will be Dr. Nelson's third trip for this project and Dr. Webster’s fourth trip. HCOMS can be proud of this project that has now served over 1,000 patients in this remote area of Jamaica. We hope others will plan to participate in future Jamaica trips. __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________  February 2012
A message from the President, Dr. Douglas Nelson As we begin a new year of activity, I want to take this time to thank you for electing me as your President. It is indeed an honor to serve in this position and I do not take it lightly. I hope we can continue to grow the society as we seek new members across this county.  Our first event of the year will be our membership dinner meeting. This event gives each of us the opportunity to meet with our fellow osteopathic physicians and learn ways that we can support each other.  The dinner meeting will be held on Thursday, March 8th at 7:00 p.m. at the Chart House Restaurant (formerly Landry’s) on the Courtney Campbell Causeway. This is always a nice venue at a waterside location with a private dining room. The sponsor for this event is Physicians Casualty. So, please mark down the date of March 8th on your calendar and call in your reservation to 727-581-9069 or email docwebster@aol.com. Our second event of the year will be our 13th Annual HCOMS Golf Tourney to be held on Wednesday, May 9th at Westchase Golf Club. This is always a fun event for all golfers and non-golfers with a four person scramble format. The afternoon tee off is at 1:00 p.m., so you can work that morning and then enjoy an afternoon of fun and fellowship. This event is open to friends and associates interested in joining us. Proceeds go to the HCOMS Student Scholarship Fund. Please plan now to come out to these events while supporting your society.                                    ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ STUDENT SCHOLARSHIP FUND NAMED IN HONOR OF DR. KENNETH E. WEBSTER       The Hillsborough County Osteopathic Medical Society has named their Student Scholarship Fund in honor of Dr. Kenneth E. Webster. Dr. Webster has served as the Executive Director for the society for the past 22 years. During his tenure he has been responsible for managing the societies activities including coordinating all board and dinner meetings, editing and printing the HCOMS News, coordinating special events including the Jamaica Clinic Project and as liaison to the AOA, FOMA, FAO, HCMA and other medical organizations. Previously he has received the HCOMS Distinguished Service Award and Presidential Award. In announcing this honor at the Holiday Dinner Meeting, President Nelson noted Dr. Webster’s dedication and outstanding contributions to the osteopathic profession.  __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________   December 2011
Ruben Valdes, DO receives Lifetime Achievement Award Dr. Ruben Valdes has been a practicing osteopathic family physician in Hillsborough County for the past 40 years.  A graduate of the Kansas City College of Osteopathic Medicine, he is a lifetime member of the American Osteopathic Association and the Florida Osteopathic Medical Association. As a member of the Hillsborough County Osteopathic Medical Society, Dr. Valdes has served on the board for over 20 years including a term as President from 1975-1976. Born in Candelaria, Cuba, Dr. Valdes emigrated to Tampa at the age of 12. He then graduated from Hillsborough High School.  From there he earned a Bachelor and Masters degree at the University of South Florida. Dr. Valdes has served on the Medical Staff and Board of Trustees at Town and Country Hospital and on the Medical Staff at Tampa General Hospital and University Community Hospital. For his years of dedicated service to the osteopathic profession, his many patients, and to the Hillsborough County Osteopathic Medical Society, we are proud to honor him with the HCOMS Lifetime Achievement Award.
December 2011
Brett Scotch, DO receives Physician of the Year Dr. Brett Scotch has been chosen to receive the 2011 Physician of the Year award from the Hillsborough County Osteopathic Medical Society. The HCOMS Physician of the Year award is presented to an osteopathic physician who has made significant and considerable contributions to the osteopathic profession, their patients, and to the community on both a local and statewide level.  Dr. Scotch is presented this award in recognition and appreciation of his devotion as a leader, educator, and role model for the HCOMS and osteopathic physician in this county and state. Dr. Scotch is board certified in Otolarynglogy & Facial Plastic surgery with a CAQ in Sleep Medicine.  He has donated his time to the local community by hosting annual free skin cancer screenings as well as free oral cancer screening events.  He is an adjunct clinical professor of Surgery/ENT at Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine.  Dr. Scotch has given community lectures and spoken to the media about health issues affecting the ears, nose, and throat as a member of the AOA's Media Spokesperson Network.  During this past year, Dr. Scotch was honored as FOMA Physician of the Year.  He has served on the board of the Hillsborough County Osteopathic Medical Society and this year was a member of the "Jamaica Clinic" team that treated 253 patients during a week in July.  He is currently in private practice in Wesley Chapel and Zephyrhills, Florida.
July 2011
Jamaica Clinic Treats Record Number of Patients The Hillsborough County Osteopathic Medical Society sponsored their fourth sojourn to provide medical services in Treasure Beach, Jamaica. This year’s group provided medical treatment to a record 253 patients. The area served does not have a physician or hospital within twenty miles. Leading this year’s contingent were two HCOMS board members: Douglas Nelson, DO, President-Elect and Brett Scotch, DO, Secretary/Treasurer. Joining them were Kenneth Webster, Ed.D., Executive Director, Amelia Tunanitas-Pantelis, DO, from Pinellas County, and Rowena Ravano, MD, from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Eight medical students, two nurses and two aides were also a part of this medical team.   Over the past four summers the medical teams have provided treatment to over 750 patients. The society also sends a group of doctors over to this area of Jamaica each March. Therefore, between the two groups they have treated over 1,000 patients. Other society members who have participated in this program are: Lon Lynn, DO, Robert Norman, DO, Anthony Granell, DO, William Eng, MD, Jesse Lynn, DO and Fred Taylor, DO.
July 2011
The first 2 HCOMS scholarships were awarded to recent graduates Dr. Tanya Perich and Dr. Jesse Lynn.  Congratulations on your graduation and we are so proud of you both! On Thursday, July 26th, Dr. Lon Lynn and Dr. Ken Webster will be holding a workshop that will explain the "accountable care organization" and ways that you can become involved with a local program.  The event will be held at 7PM at the Hilton Carillon Park Hotel in north St. Petersburg at Ulmerton Road.  There is no cost to attend and light refreshments will be served.  Please RSVP to the HCOMS office at 727-581-9069. Monthly activities will resume on Thursday, September 8th with our General Membership dinner meeting at Donatello's Restaurant in South Tampa.  Enjoy your summer, and save the date! The FOMA mid-year seminar will be held on September 16-18 at the Grand Hyatt Hotel on the Courtney Campbell Causeway.  For more information, call 1-800-226-3662.  They will be offering 30 Category 1A CME credits including state mandated courses.
June 2011
On July 16th we will be sending our fourth contingent of travelers to serve in the "Jamaica Clinic Project".  This year we have four doctors, three nurses, eight students, two aides, and the coordinator Dr. Webster. They expect to provide medical care to over 150 residents of the area. This has been a wonderful service our society has provided to nearly 1000 patients.  Best wishes for another successful clinic!  The next clinics are planned for March 2012 and July 2012 so please let Dr. Webster know if you are interested in participating on the next trips. _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ May 2011
The 12th annual HCOMS Open Golf Tourney will be held on Wednesday, May 25th at the Westchase Golf Club beginning at 1:30PM.  This four person scramble event is always fun and provides some excitement for everyone.  Proceeds go to the HCOMS Scholarship Fund.  This is an open tournament that welcomes all interested participants __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ April 2011
Dr. Lon Lynn and Dr. Ken Webster attended several seminars to keep abreast of the new rules pertaining to "Accountable Care Organizations".   An article on this topic was included in the April 2011 newsletter. __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ March 2011
Our general meeting in March drew over 40 attendees that featured a great menu at Roy's Hawaiian Fusion Restaurant and an excellent program.  __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ February 2011
Kenneth E. Webster, Ed.D., HCOMS Executive Director received a special award at the FOMA 108th Convention held in February. 

The Florida Board of Osteopathic Medicine presented Dr. Webster with the "Board Chairman's Award" in recognition and commendation of his many years of outstanding contributions to the osteopathic medical profession. Prior to his career with the osteopathic profession, Dr. Webster served as Assistant Superintendent for the Pinellas County School System where he was responsible for the educational programs in 14 high schools and 22 middle schools.   __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ February 2011
Brett M. Scotch, D.O., F.A.O.C.O, received the 2011 Physician of the Year Award from the Florida Osteopathic Medical Association (FOMA) during its 108th Annual Convention held in Weston,Florida. 

A crowd of more than 1,000 osteopathic physicians, healthcare professionals, and students attended the convention.