NOVA: Doctors’ Diaries

Tue, 04/07/2009 - 8:00pm
Pictured: The seven doctors reunite, 17 years after graduation, at their alma mater, Harvard Medical School. Dr. Liebschutz is the doctor to the right.
Credit: Betsy Cullen Photography
Over the past 21 years, NOVA has followed a group of seven doctors from their first day at Harvard Medical School in 1987. One of the doctors featured in the special is Dr. Jane Liebschutz, who grew up in Pittsford, New York. All young, bright, and accomplished, none of them could have predicted what it would take, personally and professionally, to become a member of the medical tribe. NOVA’s cameras have been there through the difficult years of classes and clinical training, internship and residency, marriage and divorce — documenting the trials and tribulations as these individuals struggled to become doctors and to balance time at work and at home. Candid in-depth interviews have given viewers a real sense of what each person has to deal with day in and day out since he or she made the decision to practice medicine. In this special two-part program, airing Tuesdays, April 7 and April 14 at 8 p.m., NOVA returns one last time to get an update on the kind of doctors — and people — they have become.

Dr. Liebschutz graduated from Pittsford-Mendon High School in 1979, and attended Yale University, where she majored in Chinese Studies. Her interest in medicine happened just before her senior year at Yale, while enrolled in a summer traveling fellowship in China. There she learned about the Barefoot Doctors in rural China (public health para-professionals), and decided to pursue medicine/public health after graduation. Dr. Liebschutz now lives in Boston, MA where she is currently an internist specializing in underserved populations, domestic violence, and addictions. She is also Associate Professor of Medicine at Boston University School of Medicine.