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Welcome to The Medicine Mentors interview series. Our mission is to create a platform for top physician mentors to share key insights, traits and best practices based on their experiences to guide medical students and residents.

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Nov 25, 2020

Stephanie Detterline, M.D., FACP, is the Vice-Chair of Education and Program Director of the Internal Medicine Residency program at MedStar Health Internal Medicine, Baltimore. She also is the Associate Designated Institutional Official (DIO) for the Baltimore programs in MedStar. Dr. Detterline received her medical degree from Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis and completed internship and residency at Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood, Illinois. She is the Associate Dean for Medical Education, Baltimore at the Georgetown University School of Medicine and is heavily involved with the student programs at Georgetown University School of Medicine. She is Board certified in Internal Medicine. Dr. Detterline has a particular interest in patient-physician communication, factors influencing resident career choice, and the health and fitness of residents in training programs.

As you consider residency programs, and potential mentors, ask yourself this question: Do you feel supported? Today, Dr. Stephanie Detterline urges us to choose working environments that align with our goals and aspirations, and that give us permission to bring love and passion into a career path we are enthusiastic about. She believes we will find the most success when we are able to be open and honest to our mentors about our struggles, as well as our love for the work we do. Lastly, she talks about differentiating between physician burnout and exhaustion: While tiredness is common and probably inevitable, physician burnout is much more likely to creep in when we feel undervalued, underappreciated, and unfulfilled.

Pearls of Wisdom:

1. It’s important to choose an environment that matches our goals and aspirations, and that can enable us to bring love and passion in a job we look forward to.
2. Own your history, admit your mistakes, and develop a growth mindset.
3. Distinguish between physician burnout and tiredness. While burnout may include elements of tiredness, it is more about not feeling appreciated and valued in your work.