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A Clinician’s Perspective: Work and Life in Worcester, Massachusetts

We recently spoke with Dr. Swetlana Lobachova, TeamHealth anesthesiology facility medical director, about her facility and the community she serves in Worcester.

TeamHealth: Tell us about the facilities you currently oversee?

Dr. Lobachova: I am currently Facility Medical Director in Anesthesiology at Saint Vincent Hospital in Worcester, Massachusetts. It is a private community hospital with about 300 beds.

TeamHealth: What do you enjoy most about your position as a facility medical director at TeamHealth?

Dr. Lobachova: The position affords me with a lot of responsibilities and opportunities to coach people and encourage them to perform to the best of their abilities. I enjoy creating a culture of teamwork and a supportive environment that will enable my colleagues to perform at their best and step out of their comfort zone.

The position constantly challenges me and stretches my abilities beyond clinical medicine.”

In one day, in addition to clinical work, I am likely to encounter anything from people to logistical to operational issues. I leave exhausted yet mentally energized at the end of the day.

TeamHealth: Tell us about the community you serve? What do you love most about it?

Dr. Lobachova: The Worcester, Massachusetts, community is diverse with respect to ethnicity as well as walks of life. The patients I encounter range from factory workers to professors, recent immigrants to born-and-raised Americans. I have to adjust my language and comportment to match the patient’s background. We see a wide variety of cases, including emergencies and very sick people. It keeps work interesting and rewarding.

TeamHealth: Tell us about your training, educational background and professional interests.

Dr. Lobachova: I trained in anesthesiology during residency at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. It’s one of the Harvard teaching hospitals and I did not do a fellowship, I’m a general Anesthesiologist. I actually have an MBA as well that I got at the same time that I completed my MD degree at Harvard. So the plan and my interests from the start have always been clinical work, but combining that with leadership, administrative and organizational duties. After finishing residency, I went on to a couple of smaller places in the Boston area, which were wonderful to begin my career, but just didn’t have any room to grow or any leadership or organizational responsibilities to offer. I came across the TeamHealth career posting and was very excited the more I learned about the company.

TeamHealth: Tell us about your team. What’s the team culture or dynamic?

Dr. Lobachova: Our care team model is based on CRNA supervision; we do not have any residents at St. Vincent’s. Our physicians work solely with CRNAs, so I would say that more than 90% of the time you are supervising several CRNAs in several rooms, up to four maximum. On occasion, you still perform your own cases and you cover everything from pediatric to general anesthesia to bigger cases including very sick people. A lot of original anesthesia is performed. We have a busy OB department as well, so those obstetric skills would not go to waste. We also have a cardiac surgery program at St. Vincent’s, so if an anesthesiologist is cardiac fellowship trained, then that is a wonderful opportunity. It covers anything from breadth from bread-and-butter cases to more complex situations including caring for very sick patients while supervising multiple CRNAs.

TeamHealth: What kinds of opportunities can a physician on your team expect at your facility and TeamHealth at large?

Dr. Lobachova: I think there is a lot of growth opportunity. Period. You have a lot of growth opportunity both within the practice and on a larger scale. A lot of the time people are promoted from within the group to either be division leads or to be responsible for certain sub-specialties of anesthesia, or become assistant medical directors. TeamHealth is a national organization so there’s also a lot of opportunity to grow on the national stage if you so desire. I know that TeamHealth also encourages a lot of involvement in healthcare policy on the national stage or in state societies, whether it’s in the American Society of Anesthesiologists or the American Medical Society. They encourage research and other activities, any interests that a person might want to pursue. So for someone just coming out of residency, it’s excellent because you can really pursue any interest you may have and you’re not boxing yourself into just one specific sub-area. You will be exposed to—at least at my hospital—to all cases, a wide variety of cases, not just a certain sort of sub-set of cases that young attending physicians get to do at academic centers. Plus, you have the weight of a national team behind you.

We have open opportunities across Massachusetts! Join a team that supports you and recognizes your impact in providing excellent patient care. Not the right fit for you? TeamHealth has opportunities available nationwide!