Meet Dr. Brian Wood – LewisGale Medical Center


(gentle music) – I am Dr. Brian Wood. I am a geriatric psychiatrist. I specialize in treating
patients with memory disorders and other forms of cognitive disorders. I am practicing, currently, at the Lewis Gale Medical
Center in Salem, Virginia. I’m a native of Virginia. I was born and raised a
little bit north of Richmond. I went to Hampden-Sydney College. I graduated from college there. I went to medical school,
actually, in West Virginia and then came back to
Virginia for both my residency at Eastern Virginia Medical School and my fellowship in
geriatric psychiatry was here in Roanoke-Salem, through the University
of Virginia’s program. After finishing medical school, I initially went into practice, briefly, with a group in Virginia Beach, Virginia, and they had taught me
during my residency. They were a group that
had kind of broken off from the medical school group. And part of my work there
was to supervise residents in a small community
services board setting. That was very enjoyable to me and I think that what it helped me to realize is that there wasn’t enough of that, that I wanted the education to be, really, a central part of my career. So ever since then, I’ve worked in medical education kinds of systems. I’ve started out working for the state and working on their medical affiliations with several medical
schools and medical students and residents and things like that, and developed that more and more. Was the Residency Director of
the University of Virginia’s program here for a few years, and then have been
overseeing medical education in the psychiatry department
at the VA ever since. So I’m looking forward
to continuing to do that, starting a new program,
and getting people excited about having education in mental health. The thing that inspired
me to become a physician is just the physicians
that I had treating me and my family when I was a
child and kind of seeing that, the connection that
they had with my family. I think that’s something that
has really stuck with me, is that relationship, and I
try to certainly replicate that in my practice with my patients. I think that’s a very, very important part of being a physician. I think that’s one of the things that has inspired me over the years. I constantly tell medical
students that I work with this: that if you had asked me
what I wanted to go into in the third year of my
medical school career, I would have told you
anything but psychiatry. I liked every part of medicine and I think as I went through that, not even knowing that I was interested in psychiatry, when I hit my rotation in psychiatry, that’s all I wanted to do. The kind of drive that
I had to treat people that really needed care,
and that’s what I saw on my rotation in psychiatry, is, really. People that were so much in need of care and there were not that many resources to help them, oftentimes. And so I think that was one of the things that really inspired me to go into psychiatry, and then later on, particularly, into geriatric psychiatry. And I got to be good
friends with the person that was teaching me. I still keep in touch with
him, as a matter of fact, and see him periodically. But that was the thing that inspired me to go into psychiatry, was
just that personal experience with patients. I became interested in
geriatric psychiatry, actually, very early on. I was always the one that would volunteer to go to the nursing home,
because I enjoyed it. Part of that comes from my own background of being very close to my grandparents and growing up with them
and enjoying their company. But I’ve always enjoyed
being around those patients. It was something that
I thought was needed. Most people go through
their general residency and go straight into a
fellowship, but I did not do that. By the time that I
actually did train in that a few years later, I was doing a good bit of geriatric psychiatry and knew that that was exactly what I wanted to do. I wanted to see that group of patients all the time and work in that setting. That was probably one of
the most interesting times of my education, was
having the opportunity to go back and do that and
not have the responsibilities of being an attending physician,
but being a trainee again. That was something that I really enjoyed, and ever since then, that’s
what I’ve done clinically. I live on a farm. I enjoy that. I have all sorts of animals. Chickens, pigeons, pigs, horses. I enjoy having the horses. My wife and I enjoy riding the horses. I enjoy spending time with my family. I have two boys. Spend a lot of time with them
and enjoy that tremendously. Enjoy fishing, activities like that. One of my hobbies that I really enjoy is, I’m working with dogs. I have pointing dogs and have them, train them, hunt with them. That’s one of things
that I very much enjoy. And I work with, my
sons help me with that. Lots of things that we
do together as a family, and that’s basically what I enjoy doing.

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