Preventive Medicine Physician

Prevent public health issues through research and education.

What does a Preventive Medicine Physician do?

A Preventive Medicine Physician keeps people well. Preventive Medicine Physicians work with small professional groups or communities, helping them counter and prevent the ailments and illnesses frequently found among those groups.

For example, if you’re a Preventive Medicine Physician working in a community with a high incidence of obesity, you may work with a Community Dietitian to educate citizens on healthy eating. You may also show them how to prevent complications (diabetes, etc.) arising from the issue. In a community experiencing a severe flu outbreak, meanwhile, you may use a combination of vaccinations, education, and other harm reduction strategies to try to lower the infection rate.

In this job, it’s important to know if your harm reduction strategies are working. Keeping good records, gathering information from a variety of sources, and knowing how to interpret it are all vital to keeping your community safe. You face some of the most unique challenges in the medical world, and pit your mind and skills against illnesses and injuries. Your creativity and willingness to try new things may just save someone’s life.

Don’t expect a standard workweek with this job. When emergencies strike or long-term intervention is needed, you’ll need to put in the hours necessary to help people. Sickness and disease don’t punch a clock.

You’re part of a team of other Doctors and medical professionals, and they look to you for guidance and leadership. You may lose some battles in your career, but you can feel good knowing that you’ve done your best and hopefully helped some people along the way.