UC's Women in Medicine and Science (WIMS) organization is committed to serving all female faculty and trainees from the UC College of Medicine. Dedicated to the recruitment, advancement and retention of all women faculty and trainees in the College of Medicine, our overall goal is to advance the careers and leadership skills of our WIMS members. Please visit the UC WIMS website to find a schedule of events, resources, and learn about our leadership.
This month, the American Medical Association and Association of American Medical Colleges celebrate Women in Medicine Month or #WiMMonth. We asked Jaime Lewis, MD, associate professor, Department of Surgery and a career advisor in the College of Medicine’s Office of Student Affairs a few questions about what motivates and inspires her in medicine.
Where do you find meaning in medicine?
I find meaning in relationships with my patients, my staff and colleagues, and my learners.
What is your favorite experience working in medicine?
My favorite experiences fall into two categories, those with my patients and those with my learners. It is an honor for patients to choose me as their surgeon and put all of their trust into my care. It is also incredibly rewarding and exciting to see my residents and students progress in terms of technical skills, clinical skills, or just as human beings.
What is a challenging issue you face and how to do you overcome it?
In the world of medicine where it is easy to become overwhelmed with the destructive power of disease, long work hours and endless paperwork, the challenge I face is avoiding cynicism and detachment. I have learned to diversify my professional activities, cultivate relationships at work and honor the ones I hold dear at home. I remind myself that my work matters. And, I run, a lot.
Any career can be stressful, but particularly for those who work with patients every day. What is your wellness strategy?
My wellness strategies include eating well and running. When I run, I often practice mindfulness. I also am incredibly lucky to have a wonderful husband and children who are my guiding lights. I cherish my life with them.
Outside of the operating room, Lewis' work has recently focused on encouraging women in academic medicine careers to use social media for professional development. You can learn more by joining her upcoming webinar
presented by the Southern California Clinical and Translational Science Institute on Oct. 10, 2018.