The Mrs. The Mommy. The M.D.: See It. Do It.
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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

See It. Do It.

Dr. Scruggs is a practicing Internist. She said one of the most poignant things to me when we were discussing the interview over email "I just scaled back my work duties in my efforts to achieve work life "integration". I don't say balance anymore because I can't keep those lives mutually exclusive anymore. Kids know I'm a doctor and work knows I'm a mom." Genius!

Name:  Adrianne Scruggs, MD 

Medical School: Meharry Medical College 

Graduation Year: 2002

Future (or Current) Specialty: Internal Medicine

How many children do you have and their ages: Two children; 7 years old and 3 years old. 

Did you do any post-undergraduate schooling or working before attending medical school? No

Did you have any of your children during medical school? If so, how did you “plan” for it? No

What kind of childcare do you employ? (i.e. live-in nanny, family help, daycare, babysitters) 
We use Daycare/Afterschool Care and Babysitters through an agency. 

What has been the biggest challenge to handling medical school (and/or practicing medicine) along with having children? How have you overcome it
The biggest challenge in practicing medicine full-time (which, for me, is clinic work 8am-5pm plus sharing hospital call duties on weeknights and weekends) and raising young children, is participating in extracurricular and or enrichment activities. I’d like to dedicate time outside of work teaching my kids things they won’t necessarily be exposed to in school. This has required negotiating dedicated administration time into my 8a-5p work day in efforts to reduce the paperwork burden that might otherwise flood over into precious family time. 

Do you feel like your school/job is “flexible” to any family issues that may arise? 
Yes. There are protocols in place should a parent need to “call out” due to urgent issues. It can be difficult to arrange participating in some school activities that may be “last minute” since work requires a 30 day notice for “time off” requests. 

What is one item/strategy that you have that helps to make life easier as a mother and medical student/physician? (i.e. organizational method, electronic device, calendar tool, etc.)
Hiring support: I’m a member of a nanny/babysitting agency, have a personal chef, and a housekeeper. We are fortunate enough to be able to budget for these items. Without them, I’d be completely overwhelmed.

What kinds of things do you do to “relax”? 
Run and read.

Do you feel that your experience as a mother has made you a better doctor or future doctor? If so, how? 
Being a mother requires using all senses to “read” and understand your child. I think moms understand the concept of “nonverbal clues” that assist in communication with all types of people. Most mothers are nurturers, and that’s the essence of medicine.

What advice do you have to the women who want to pursue medicine with children?
Build your village! You cannot do this alone, and it takes time to get used to trusting others. 

Are you a physician or medical student mom who would like to share her story? Send me an email at

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