Local physician receives award

A local physician, who has been practicing medicine in the Wapakoneta area for 31 years, has recently received a prestigious award from the state of Ohio.

Dr. Thomas Freytag, the medical director at Occupational Health within Lima Memorial System, was recently named the Ohio Athletic Trainers’ Association (OATA) Team Physician Award.

Freytag, who was the family physician with Lincoln Family Practice for year, serves as the team physician in Wapakoneta and has been doing this for 32 years.

“I was very honored,” Freytag said when he heard the news. “I didn’t really expect it. It’s been a real treat and very enjoyable to do that over the years and see the kids grow up and move on with their careers and see them come back with their kids.”

OATA recognizes a physician each year that supports the efforts of athletic trainers. Along with being the team physician for Wapakoneta City Schools and an occupational health director, he is also the coroner of Auglaize County, an active staff member at St. Rita’s Medical Center and a diplomat and fellow of the American Board of family practice.

Freytag job duties as the team physician for Wapakoneta includes working with the athletic trainer, giving a second opinion on injuries, setting up physicals and working with medical concerns of the student athletes.

In 2004, Freytag was appointed by the governor to the Task Force for Developmentally Disabled-Abuse and Neglect. This was to establish protection laws for the developmentally disabled.

Freytag is also a supporter of the Special Olympics. Other honors Freytag has received through the years include Ambassador for the City of Wapakoneta, the Wapakoneta Mayor’s Award and he was awarded the “Samuel R Gerber Award” from the State Coroner Association.

Freytag and his wife, Gwynne, are very active in giving back to their community, with various projects at the local schools and throughout the Wapakoneta community.

“I think it’s neat I get an award, but being a part of the community is a real award,” Freytag said.

Robb Williams, the assigned athletic trainer for Wapakoneta City School through St. Rita’s Medical Center, works closely with Freytag.

“For over 25 years when there was no athletic trainer at Wapakoneta High School, he provided ‘Saturday morning bump and blue clinics’ at the school for the athletes,” Williams said, in an OATA news release. “He has also been there to provide care to the young men and woman of the school district with pro bona care and yearly physicals to countless athletes.”

Freytag’s background is similar to Williams, as Freytag was a student athletic trainer during his high school years, which helped sparked him to study medicine and become a physician.

Freytag said he enjoys sports, and always had an interest in athletic training and medicine, and by being the team physician for the Wapakoneta City Schools, is a way he can still participate in sports, as well as give back to his community.

Freytag will receive his award at the OATA annual meeting and symposium on May 11.

The OATA is a not-for-profit organization, which was founded in 1984, and is dedicated to the health care needs of the physically active. Their goal is the ensure that athletes, at every level, receive immediate, professional, quality health care, and this comprehensive and cost-effective care is accomplished with the daily contact and cooperation with physicians and other allied health care professionals.