Profile: Susan Padrino

Susan Padrino, MD, completed her combined Internal Medicine / Psychiatry residency at Duke University Medical Center in 2004 and is board-certified in Internal Medicine, Psychiatry, and Psychosomatic Medicine.  She is assistant professor in the departments of Internal Medicine and Psychiatry at Case Western Reserve University, School of Medicine, and is Medical Director of the Douglas Moore Health Center.  She also directs the Physical Diagnosis program for medical students.  Dr. Padrino provides psychiatric consultation to patients in the cancer center and hepatology clinic, supervises medical residents in their primary care clinic, and provides geropsychiatric care for inpatients.  She has previously held a number of administrative, clinical, and educational roles.  With a busy family life, Dr. Padrino’s clinical responsibilities are part-time, enabling her to balance work and family life.

Dr. Padrino advises that combined training is hard work, with a steep upward learning curve in the early years.  However, she finds that the knowledge and experience she gained from the combination have continued to benefit her and her patients synergistically.  She hopes that as reimbursement for primary care improves, physicians with combined training will be even better positioned to make a case for providing high-quality, patient-centered care.

Dr. Padrino says that with diligent searching and clear communication with her employer, she was able to come up with the half-and-half job she was seeking.  Though staying current in two fields can be challenging, she advises students, “There are so many rewards, both personal and professional.  It is hard for me to imagine practicing either field without training in the other.  I appreciate being a specialist in the ‘other’ field, while at the same time providing truly primary care.”