A Conversation with.....
Beth Mazyck, MD
Medical Director and Senior VP of Clinical Services
"I've wanted to be a doctor since I was three years old," says Beth Mazyck, MD, Senior Vice President of Clinical Services for CHC Family Health Centers. "I first heard of family medicine in high school. I knew then....that's the kind of doctor I want to be!"
On a cold March afternoon, Dr. Mazyck reflects upon a medical career that spans well beyond the two coastlines she called home during her formative years. Raised in small-town Hanover, New Hampshire, she headed west for college, majoring in Psychology at the University of Oregon. Upon graduation in 1979, Dr. Mazyck began applying to medical schools.
In 1980, she enrolled at George Washington University School of Health Sciences in Washington, D.C. To finance her medical training, Dr. Mazyck applied for and received a military scholarship from the U.S. Army. Required to serve at least four years of active duty, in 1987 Dr. Mazyck completed her Family Medicine residency in Fort Gordon, GA at the Eisenhower Army Medical Center.
She also traveled extensively, spending the next decade as a family physician with the U.S. Army in Germany, New York and in North Carolina, meeting her husband O'Neill along the way. It was in 1996, serving as a residency faculty member at Fort Bragg in North Carolina that Dr. Mazyck decided to return to New England.
"I liked teaching. I applied to every Family Medicine residency in New England and really liked Fitchburg," she remembers. "And I remember Peter McConarty interviewing me, too," she adds with a laugh. After five years teaching at the UMass Fitchburg Family Residency, Dr. Mazyck was appointed Residency Director in 2001, a post she held until Dr. James Ledwith took the reins in 2008.
Congressman John Olver honors Dr. Mazyck for 30 years of service in the U.S. Army as well as community service to Fitchburg over the past 14 years.
With the creation of Community Health Connections in 2002, she also assumed the role of Medical Director, a title she still holds. A member of the United States Army Reserves since 1996, Dr. Mazyck also has the distinction of serving with the same unit (the 399th Combat Support Hospital) for ten years.
Most recently, Dr. Mazyck led the team that applied for and received the $10.7 million federal stimulus grant for CHC's current expansion and renovation. The new health center, she points out, is only one of many exciting changes that the coming decade will bring to central Massachusetts. "If health care payment reform is done right, primary care will have a new prominence and respect in the medical community."
A resident of Princeton, MA since 1996, Dr. Mazyck and her husband O'Neill have six children; three teenagers and three adult sons. (Look for one of her oldest sons to appear in a national commercial for Starbucks later this year!)
In May 2013, she will mark 32 years of service with the U.S. military. Looking back at the trajectory her career has taken, Dr. Mazyck recalls her earliest days as a medical student. "I kept my options open. But I knew I wanted primary care," she explains. "Family medicine always seemed like the most interesting, exciting, and people-oriented specialty to me. And it still does."