During September, which is the American Medical Association's Women in Medicine month, PCOM recognizes our female physicians who serve as faculty members and role models for our students across all three of our campuses in Philadelphia, Suwanee and Moultrie. Each campus has selected a representative "Woman in Medicine" to feature in a web story, however we honor and celebrate all of our female physicians and student doctors and their commitment to advancing equity and creating change.
After graduating from the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine program at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, Lauren Noto-Bell, DO ‘06, went on to complete a family medicine residency at Christiana Care Health System and a neuromusculoskeletal fellowship at PCOM. From there, she joined the faculty at PCOM as an associate professor in the osteopathic manipulative medicine (OMM) department. Additionally, Dr. Noto-Bell is the program director for the osteopathic neuromusculoskeletal medicine residency program.
Here, Dr. Noto-Bell shares her experience as a woman in medicine.
I credit an MD for introducing me specifically to osteopathic medicine during my undergraduate career. In discussions about my medical interests and future desires, he said they aligned well with the philosophy of osteopathic medicine and that I should consider reading up on it. This was some of the best advice I have ever received and I will be forever-grateful for his opening my eyes to osteopathic medicine.
Women shoulder enormous burdens every day, often with incredible grace and aplomb. Even with these challenges, many women still strive for lofty career goals. To me, advancing equity for women in medicine must include not stifling a woman's desire to be a wife/partner/mother/caregiver while also being a successful medical provider/advocate/teacher/leader. A few avenues to support this effort must include gender equity with regard to salary, appropriate maternity leave or caregiver leave, and the option for a flexible schedule when possible. These things should be granted regardless of gender.
I think it's important to recognize the ideas and accomplishments of other women. A huge frustration of mine is when a woman makes a statement that gets glossed over or outright ignored, and then a few minutes later a male makes the same statement that gets applauded. It happens pretty often! If I hear a great idea by a female colleague or student, I will make a timely effort to highlight it. It's a small gesture, but a quick way to make sure credit goes where it's due.
Founded in 1899, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine has trained thousands of highly competent, caring physicians, health practitioners and behavioral scientists who practice a “whole person” approach to care—treating people, not just symptoms. PCOM offers doctoral degrees in clinical psychology, osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, physical therapy and school psychology, and graduate degrees in biomedical sciences, forensic medicine, mental health counseling, organizational development and leadership, physician assistant studies, school psychology, and public health management and administration. Our students learn the importance of health promotion, research, education and service to the community. Through its community-based Healthcare Centers, PCOM provides care to medically underserved populations in inner city and rural locations. For more information, visit pcom.edu.
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