The most rewarding aspect of being an infectious diseases (ID) specialist is seeing a very sick patient get better, supporting and making a difference in their life during these tough times. Apart from seeing patients, being a part of a dedicated team and sharing the joy of solving puzzles, getting involved in teaching, increasing knowledge and awareness of infection prevention and control in the community are fulfilling aspects of my career.
I always wanted to be a pediatrician and decided to pursue a career in ID early in my residency because I wanted to increase my knowledge and experience to be able to diagnose, treat and prevent infections while exploring the wide variety of opportunities to improve health issues locally and globally. In addition to patient care, I wanted to get involved in the education of medical students, residents and fellows. Epidemiology of ID is constantly changing, which makes it challenging and even more interesting. Being involved in research, quality improvement projects and teaching is very valuable for me.
Early in my career, involvement in the ID community helped me to achieve my goals. I attended medical conferences, certificate programs and got involved in online continuing medical education sites as appropriate. These endeavors allowed me to see the power of collaboration within the ID community, and see the opportunity to use our voices to improve healthcare and reduce risk for infections. I am proud to contribute to the ID community and carry on the legacy of my amazing teachers and great mentors who supported me to achieve my goals and dreams.
I believe the next generation of ID leaders are positioned to take the specialty to the next level. It will be their vision that will bring the community together, while developing strategies to make the specialty even more appealing and desirable for the next generation. These emerging leaders in ID will also need to support ongoing research, collaboration and innovation. That is to say, there will be a consistent need for them to uncover improved solutions to ongoing issues and new challenges.
Being a part of the Infectious Diseases Society of America has helped me stay connected with colleagues, while providing support and resources, as needed. Emerging infections, growing global travel and antibiotic resistant strains will contribute to increasing demand for ID physicians in the future. Professional societies like IDSA and Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society (PIDS) facilitate the collaboration and exposure needed to continuously improve our knowledge and experiences. I look forward to getting involved in new opportunities that the future holds for the ID community.