It’s the rare person who knows what they want to do with their life at 5 years old, but for Cecilia Dowsing-Adams, MD, that’s when she knew she wanted to be the sort of doctor who cares for every generation of the family, from newborn babies to senior citizens.
Dr. Dowsing-Adams is realizing that goal at Regional One Health’s Primary Care Specialists, 3109 Walnut Grove Road, where she recently joined the team as a family medicine practitioner.
She sees patients of all ages to provide physical exams, preventative care, acute care for illnesses and injuries, management of chronic conditions and more. As a family physician, she sees both children and adults in the same family, enhancing convenience and relationships for patients.
“I decided at a very early age that I wanted to be a physician,” she said. “It was after losing a loved one. As a child, for someone who hadn’t appeared to be sick to just die, in my mind that didn’t make sense. I wanted to do something so that wouldn’t happen anymore.
“As I got older, of course I realized it isn’t that simple, but I still wanted to make a difference.”
She set her sights on family medicine because family practitioners were her role models growing up in Holly Springs, Mississippi. “I’m from a small town, so pretty much all I knew was the family doctor,” she said. “I decided I wanted to be able to serve the needs of the entire family.”
Dr. Dowsing-Adams earned her undergraduate degree at Mississippi State, and then attended the University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson for medical school. She completed her internship and residency at UT/Baptist Healthplex Family Medicine in Memphis.
Medical school confirmed for her that she would thrive most in a practice that offered variety.
“I enjoyed all of my rotations, but there wasn’t one thing that stood out in medical school where I thought, ‘I have to specialize in this,’” she said. “I like to see patients of all ages, and I like to switch gears – and in family practice, you never know what’s behind door number one.”
Patients also reap rewards from sticking with the same doctor throughout their life, she noted.
Getting to know a patient and their health history over many years enhances a doctor’s ability to identify potential health concerns as well as the treatments a patient would respond best to. Dr. Dowsing-Adams said there is also a high degree of trust that goes with a long-term relationship.
“It makes them comfortable. They’re willing to open up to me about things they wouldn’t tell another provider,” she said. “It’s hard to put into words the feeling of having that trust. The medical profession is different from any profession because of the trust people put in you.”
Dr. Dowsing-Adams honors that trust by providing compassionate care and approaching each patient how she would want a friend or loved one to be treated. “I treat patients with dignity and respect – the same way I would treat someone in my own family,” she said.