Residency: Internal Medicine at UTHealth Medical School in Houston
Fellowships: Cardiovascular Diseases/Cardiology at UTHealth Medical School in Houston
Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology at UTHealth Medical School in Houston
Current Position: Director of the Cardiac Electrophysiology Laboratory at Memorial Hermann Hospital Memorial City and practice cardiac electrophysiology and cardiology in the Memorial Hermann system.
What is your fondest memory of your time at UTMSH?
Hosting the retreat for incoming freshman proved to be my fondest memory at UTMSH. This encounter provided humor, vulnerability and honest opportunities for relationship development. Witnessing the onset of this life-altering journey, which challenges great students academically, physically and emotionally offered a rare privilege that rekindled my enthusiasm and idealism for medicine. Additionally this is where I met my wife of now 28 years!
What are your hopes for today’s UTMSH students?
I still hope that during this phase of time-limited, non-individualized and protocol-automated medicine, the humanness of being a physician is not lost. The greatest goal should be to remain patient-centered, compassionate caregivers. The art and heart of medicine promises that computers will never successfully replace physicians as successful healthcare providers in the future.
What inspires you?
I am always inspired by patients’ stories of resilience and their gratefulness. I am also inspired by my wife who stands up for what is right for her patients and their safety even at the risk of sacrificing her own job security.
What’s a day on the job like?
I work 12+ hour days, awakening at 5AM, rounding on inpatients, returning phone calls, then seeing patients in the outpatient clinic or doing procedures like ablations, defibrillator or pacemaker implantations. My usual day concludes with hospital consultations, echocardiogram and EKG reading and occasional evening lectures.
What skill is most vital to your job?
Inspite of all the progress in medicine, the most critical skill of excellent patient care is the ability to listen to our patients.
What’s on your iPod?
Music enriches my life. I enjoy an eclectic array of music including classical, new country, alternative and classic rock as well as some pop. As we launched our youngest child to college this year, I have grieved the lost exposure to new and “off the beaten path” music he often provided.
What is the one thing you can’t live without and why?
I cannot live without purpose and the gift of shared human contact.
Who would you most like to meet (alive or deceased) and why?
Kaethe Kollwitz was a German artist who lived before and after the first World War. Through her work, she gave an emotional voice to those forgotten and oppressed during a time of economic downfall. Her moving etchings of love, death, sickness, violence, war and social injustice continue to be fundamental concerns of humanity of this day.
What has been your greatest adventure?
The greatest adventure of my life has been my marriage of 28 years and parenting my two amazing children. These have also been my most difficult challenges as no textbooks or courses exist to prepare one for the challenge of balancing a good home life with the “mistress” of medicine.
Where is your favorite lunch spot?
A favorite, casual and quaint lunch spot is the Hobbit Café which not only has healthy fare but holds a special place in my heart as I learned here that I would be a father for the second time.