At a special ceremony held yesterday, the Florida Department of Health in Orange County (DOH-Orange) honored Dr. Candice Jones as this year’s Alfred L. Bookhardt, M.D. Award recipient for her contributions to health in Orange County, Florida.
The annual Bookhardt Award for Health Equity pays homage to Dr. Bookhardt and recognizes an Orange County physician for their dedication and commitment to increasing access to healthcare with a goal of achieving health equity. Attending the ceremony was Mrs. Ola Bookhardt, Dr. Bookhardt’s wife.
On hand to present the award was DOH-Orange’s Health Officer Dr. Robert D. Karch. Noted in Dr. Karch’s presentation remarks, he discussed Dr. Jones’ passion and advocacy for promoting health and wellness and her dedication to increasing access to healthcare with the goal of achieving health equity.
Dr. Jones is a board-certified physician practicing as a general pediatrician at Edgewater Pediatrics in Pine Hills. Besides being a physician, she is also an author with a curated book titled High Five Discipline: Positive Parenting for Happy, Healthy, Well-Behaved Kids and she also hosts a Podcast entitled KIDing Around with Dr. Candice, where she discusses important child-related topics for parents with other experts in the medical and behavioral health fields.
Dr. Jones has been a champion for the health and wellbeing of underserved children and adolescents affected by health inequities. Her mission is to break down barriers, dispel myths, and help reduce disparities so that every child has an equal opportunity to achieve optimal health.
The annual Bookhardt award for Health Equity was created by DOH-Orange as a way of recognizing an Orange County physician for their commitment to increasing access to health care with a goal of achieving health equity in central Florida. Dr. Alfred L. Bookhardt (1928-2014) began his career in central Florida as a physician in the early 1960s as the second physician and surgeon at the Dr. Phillips Hospital for Coloreds (Central Florida’s first all-Black hospital), when Black doctors were barred from practicing at Orlando hospitals or joining the American Medical Association. He also co-founded the Central Florida Medical Society and Guardian Care, the first long-term care facility for African-Americans in Orlando.