The Surgeon General’s Medallion honors outstanding achievements made in the field of public health on behalf of the United States. It is the third most prestigious award granted by the Public Health Service. Accomplishments that may merit the award include breakthroughs in medicine, disease prevention, or noteworthy service in a role of significant responsibility.
The medal features a man and a woman attending to an ailing individual; in the background are a lighthouse and a boat on the water, and an inscription reading “THE SURGEON GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES” encircles the image. The reverse features the seal of the United States Public Health Service and an inscription reading “U.S. PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE.” The ribbon is yellow and is bisected by a thin vertical blue stripe; an additional blue stripe appears toward the center on each side and on each edge.