|Name:||Lee Ann Jenkins, M.D., FACC|
|Job Title:||Associate Professor, Interim Chief of Cardiology, Director of the Fellowship Program|
|Place of work:||Texas Tech University Medical Center - Internal Medicine|
Dr. Jenkins: Well, certainly there is always a motivation to help folks, which is fun. And to do something good. And to teach. I enjoy teaching. Someday I am going to die, and I hope there are doctors around to take care of me when I do that. So I enjoy the teaching aspect and the training of doctors.
TQ team: So, teaching is your favorite aspect of the job?
Dr. Jenkins: Yes, that is correct.
TQ team: Where did you attend school?
Dr. Jenkins: Here.
TQ team: What was your major in college?
Dr. Jenkins: English.
TQ team: So you went to Medical school here?
Dr. Jenkins: Yes.
TQ team: Tell me about Texas Tech Medical School, like how it compares to Texas A&M and Texas?
Dr. Jenkins: Well, you asking someone who is quite prejudice (laughs). I think that we have very good students here. And students when they are go away to do residency in other schools are actually highly prized and folks want them because they are very good students. They do above average on any kind of national testing.
TQ team: And it all directly related to you because you're the head of all this stuff, right?
Dr. Jenkins: (laughing) Yeah, right. I'd love to think that, but I think it's usually the motivation of the students.
TQ team: What advice you will give aspiring young cardiologists?
Dr. Jenkins: No one should desire to pursue this particular branch of medicine, unless they are absolutely committed to it and willing to give it the time that it takes.
TQ team: Is it more time consuming than others?
Dr. Jenkins: Oh, much more so, yes, much more so. Pretty routinely my day is 12 hours. That's is fairly routine. But many days it is 14-16 hours. Especially if you do procedures.
TQ team: Do you actually do the procedures?
Dr. Jenkins: Sure. I have two scheduled for later today. I did three yesterday.
TQ team: What are some major advances that had been made in a couple of years that have really changed the lives of doctors like you?
Dr. Jenkins: Surely, there have been many... But probably the change in our lives, the physician lives, is that what has came along has made our work more time consuming. Because what we can now do for our patients, with balloons, and stents in the arteries, we can save them from having bypass surgery or to delay it by a number of years. Though it's a wonderful advancement for the patients it requires a bigger time commitment on the part of the physicians. So we need more cardiologists to get that work done.
TQ team: So there is high demand for cardiologists?
Dr. Jenkins: Oh, yes. Although the managed care organizations have beat into everybody's head that they need a primary care physician. Though I believe all patients do. And I get all my patients a primary care physician, because of what I do, I don't have time to pay attention to the other aspects of their medical care. Like, close management of patient's diabetes, or making sure women have their annual mammograms, or men have their annual colonoscopy or prostate exams: the ongoing, preventive kind of care. So I want a primary care physician to take care of that. However when it comes to the heart, no primary care doctor can do what I do. And they don't want to because of medical legal issues. One of the number one reasons for doctors to get sued is missing potential heart disease or a heart attack, and they don't want to deal with that. Appropriately so, because that's not what they are trained to do. So they want their heart patients to see us. Since heart disease is the number one killer in this country for both men and women and those kinds of problems are best managed by cardiologists, you have to have a large number of cardiologists. And what we do in terms of procedures is so time consuming we need many cardiologists.
TQ team: Finally the last question. What is your favorite movie?
That is kind
of hard one. It may be a toss-up between the original "Sabrina" by
Humphry Bogart and "Gone with Wind". From the recent ones I liked
the "Shakespeare in Love". I also liked the "Thomas Crown Affair".
The "Six sense" was pretty good too. I like movies a lot, but I really
don't have time to get to the theater, and have to catch it later.