From Maine to Ukraine: A Physician Finds Meaning in a War Zone

By Dr. Margaret Curtis, WCI Columnist

I am fortunate enough to be married to a true Renaissance man. My husband, Mike, is a urologist, a hockey rink builder, a high school hockey team announcer (GO RED RIOTS), and an amateur stonemason. He is a former Army reservist and an experienced international aid worker who has done medical relief work in Bangladesh, Bosnia, and Macedonia (with Doctors Without Borders) and in the Western Province of Zambia.

In February 2022, he was also thoroughly burned out.

Mike had been employed by a small community hospital in Maine for 12 years. In 2021, his hospital was acquired by the largest health system in our state, and on top of the usual pressures of practicing medicine, the new administration added a new EMR, a few extra layers of administration, and a larger catchment area. One partner retired, and another stopped taking call. Suddenly, Mike was working 80 hours a week and taking call every other night. He went from preternaturally energetic…

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This article was written by Josh Katzowitz and originally published on