Episode 122: “Stress Test” a memoir, becoming a female doctor in the ’70s

My guest this week is retired neonatologist and author, Kaye Drew White. She shares her journey through the male-dominated medical field during a time when sexism and racism were rampant issues. Her memoir, Stress Test, is set to release on June 7th, provides an insightful look into the challenges she faced as a woman in medicine and offers advice for young women pursuing similar careers.

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Key Points from the Episode:

  • The struggles of being a female doctor in a male-dominated environment
  • Personal tragedies that occurred while learning to be a doctor
  • Insights into daily life in the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit)
  • Experiences dealing with sexism early in her career
  • How societal changes have impacted women’s roles and rights over time
  • The importance of controlling one’s reproductive health for career advancement 
  • Reflections on writing as therapy and energy revitalization post-retirement 

Kaye discusses how her personal experiences influenced her decision to specialize in neonatology, including childhood influences and guidance from mentors during residency. She also touches upon facing discrimination both due to gender within medical school settings as well as serving underprivileged communities.

Listeners will gain an understanding of what it was like practicing medicine across different hospital environments – from large units at Holy Cross Hospital to smaller NICUs like Shady Grove Adventist Hospital – managing anywhere between 20 to 30 babies at any given time.

The episode delves into serious topics such as coping with patient loss, malpractice fears, navigating emotional traumas alongside professional responsibilities, balancing work-life pressures especially amidst recent public setbacks regarding women’s healthcare rights following Roe v Wade reversal implications.

Kay is a good story teller and speaks with compassion about all that she was faced with, societal, personal, and professional.

You can learn more about Kay and her writings here.

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