March 30th is Doctors Day 2018. To celebrate this observance, we sat down with some of our physician colleagues to chat about how they chose their profession. We also asked them about their current role and contribution to behavioral and integrated health.

  • 3 Questions with Dr. Canh Vu, BayRidge Hospital, Lahey Health Behavioral Services

    1. Was medicine your first career choice and what attracted you to the field?

    Sort of. I went to medical school by default (after ruling out law school, graduate school in philosophy, and divinity school). In med school, I thought I'd be a cardiologist, until I did my rotation in Internal Medicine, then in Psychiatry — which I enjoyed. In Psychiatry, we met and sat down with patients (instead of standing over them at the bedside). We asked them about themselves. I also saw psychiatry as an extension of my undergraduate work in philosophy, where my focus was morality — how we should think about ourselves and each other. I thought that if I could persuade someone into changing her or his beliefs and perspectives in a way that would then allow her or him to live a better life, it's a win-win. So I thought I was headed toward a career as a psychotherapist, until I did inpatient work in residency. While I enjoyed working with high functioning people, on the inpatient psychiatric unit I discovered I had a real soft spot for folks severely impaired by the acute stages of their mental illnesses. I also loved the camaraderie of working in interdisciplinary teams.

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  • 3 Questions with Dr. Jane Schwartz, Medical Director, Gloucester Office Based Opioid Treatment Center

    1. Was medicine your first career choice and what attracted you to the field?

    No. Actually I planned to be an artist and studied painting. However, as I worked to support myself as an artist, I moved through various medical fields from E.M.T. to physician assistant, to physician. I found caring for patients to be extremely rewarding

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  • 3 Questions with Dr. Paul Fallon, Outpatient Services

    1. Was medicine/psychiatry your first career choice and what attracted you to the field?

    From early on I've been intrigued by the idea that there could be ways to understand and maybe influence for the better how the mind works. I’ve seen psychiatry as a way to be part of that. I still find it a privilege that people are willing to share their stories and trust that we might do them some good.

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  • 3 Questions with Dr. Patrick R. Aquino, Chair, Division of Psychiatry & Behavioral Medicine and Medical Director, Ambulatory and Integrated Services

    1. Was medicine/psychiatry your first career choice and what attracted you to the field?

    I always wanted to be a physician, but didn't choose psychiatry until later. I was drawn to psychiatry because I wanted to be a part of the frontier of medicine in understanding the mind and brain. I still think it is one of the few specialties where we have a real opportunity to connect with our patients and understand the whole person.

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  • 3 Questions with Dr. Shorta Yuasa, Medical Director, Addiction Treatment Services

    1. Was medicine your first career choice and what attracted you to the field?

    Yes. When I met my wife on our first day of medical school, we were two young people who grew up dreaming of becoming a physician. Now, many years later, we both know we are very lucky and privileged to be at the front and center of the human experience as physicians. I was trained and worked as an emergency physician for 18 years before I decided to switch to addiction medicine after a very dear friend of mine committed suicide, losing his struggle with addiction. I love what I do now.

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  • 3 Questions with Dr. Mary Anna Sullivan, LHBS Board Member and Co-Investigator, Lahey Transformative Research Initiative (L-TRI)

    Note: Dr. Sullivan also served for 30+ years as a physician with Lahey Health.

    1. Mary Anna, was medicine your first career choice and what attracted you to the field?

    I really wanted to be an English professor, but in the late 1970's there were no university jobs. One of my professors thought I would make a good physician, so I flipped that coin and here I am!

    Turns out, understanding and dissecting novels is pretty good training for a career as a psychiatrist unraveling and understanding human behavior. And I never tired of hearing my patients' stories.

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