Exceptional Women in Medicine: Dr. Rebecca Frontz, DO, MS
Published on Sep 28, 2023. Updated on Oct 24, 2023.
What inspired you to work in medicine?
I really just wanted to help people, particularly children. My sister passed away as a young child due to ongoing complications from being born prematurely. Since she was my older sister, never having the chance to meet her played a role. Additionally, my cousin fought and lost to leukemia as a child, the impact of which I witnessed over the years. Both of these experiences very much shaped who I wanted to be growing up. Then, of course, there is the fact that I love science and the act of learning in general. Medical school became a goal of mine from an early age.
What are the most and least satisfying aspects of your work?
When I worked in clinical medicine and saw patients, my most satisfying aspect of work was helping a child and their parents in their moment of need. I would work late at night in the pediatric urgent care, and a family would come running into the clinic with their child in respiratory distress from croup. Providing care quickly, helping the child breathe easier, and watching the concern fade from the parents’ faces was always so rewarding.
The least satisfying aspect of work probably would have been charting. Creating encounter notes for each patient every shift can get tedious, and it’s important to include specific items for insurance reimbursement. At the end of a long shift, the last thing you want to do is stick around for an extra hour or two, typing away. As they say, “If you can’t beat them, join them,” so I made it a point to get trained in depth on the electronic medical chart software my hospital system used to build templates and shortcuts for the clinicians in my department.
What does work/life balance look like for you as a medical professional?
It has changed a lot over the years for me! I went from working 80 hours per week in residency to 20-22 shifts per month as a young physician trying to pay off student loans. I found my way into an administrative role, and while I was physically home more, I was constantly on my phone and preoccupied with work. I hadn’t yet discovered what work/life balance meant. I decided to shake it up a couple of years ago and left my job to travel full-time. This was wonderful, but it eventually left me wanting to get back in touch with the academic and medical side of myself again, which is how I found Osmosis by Elsevier. It’s the perfect balance. I’m still traveling, but I get to continue learning while providing content for the next generation of medical professionals, which will help the patients!
What experiences have contributed to your success? What would you have done differently?
I believe that being passionate, dedicated, and open to opportunities led to my success from working full-time clinically to advancing into an administrative role. Supervisors noticed that I would go above and beyond to help co-workers, keep up the morale in the clinic, and that I was well-liked by the patients.
I would have established boundaries sooner. In my administrative role, it often felt like I worked 24/7 without any protected time off. I should have established dedicated time for myself and my family without the ability to be interrupted by work.
What advice would you give to your past self to prepare for working in medicine?
I would love to tell my past self to think outside the box. A career in medicine doesn’t need to mean working all the time and having a clinical role. It can be a non-clinical role in medicine with an amazing work/life balance.
About Rebecca Frontz, DO, MS
Rebecca Frontz, DO, MS, enjoyed a position with Texas Children’s Hospital as a pediatric urgent care physician for several years. During her time as part of their leadership team, she discovered her passion for medical education. After years of hard work, she hung up her stethoscope and took off with her husband to travel around the world on their sailboat in 2021. To find the perfect work-life balance and continue her passion for medical education, she joined the Osmosis by Elsevier team as a Clinical Content Writer in 2023 while floating around the Caribbean with her husband, Keith, and rescued island dog and cat, Bosun and Scupper.