Beth Baughman DuPree, MD, FACS, ABIHM, is the Vice President at Holy Redeemer Health System, Chairman of the Department of Surgery, and Medical Director Integrative Medicine and Wellness.
Beth specializes in breast cancer treatment and holds board certifications in General Surgery and Integrative and Holistic Medicine. She oversees surgical services, integrative medicine, women’s health and employee wellness and holds an academic appointment as Adjunct Assistant Professor of Surgery, training young breast surgical oncologists from Penn, Bryn Mawr Hospital, The University of Pittsburgh and Allegheny General Hospital.
Dr. Dupree has transformed her passion for healing into The Healing Consciousness Foundation, which she founded and serves as president. The Healing Consciousness Foundation provides healing opportunities for patients and education for young surgeons on the healing arts makes. She is the co-host of Women to Watch and the author of The Healing Consciousness: A Doctor’s Journey to Healing. She is writing a second book, Shifting Gears.
I spent the first 35 of my 54 years trapped in western medicine, stifling the truth: I am a healer. I choose to be a physician, as it is the most acceptable healing profession in the world, but it is more than just cutting out disease. I consider myself a “renaissance” woman, using my energy and talents to create a better planet and collective consciousness.
How Did It Affect Your Life and Work?
My life by no means is perfect or without challenges, but I have been blessed with emotional, spiritual and physical support from my immediate and extended family and friends. I was born the seventh of seven children to loving parents (Helena, 90 and Irv, 86), who gave me the gift of unconditional love and emotional support to pursue my dreams without judgment. The loss of my only brother Bart, who was killed by a drunk driver when I was 17, was absolutely “the” pivotal point in my life’s journey. Learning at young age that every day is a gift changes your worldview.
Many of my career decisions and opportunities came when I allowed my truth to become visible. I have had many mentors along the journey, whose personal challenges, diseases and adversities have imported wisdom upon me. I could not have evolved into who I am had they not played a pivotal role in my life. Sharing my journey – the good, the bad, the ugly and the exceptional – has allowed me to mentor many young physician-healers who choose medicine as a profession, teaching them that it’s okay to share that they are healers first and doctors by degree.
What was it like still having to perform as a high-level executive?
For me, it has been about functioning as a high level “spiritual being” and having an amazing human experience. That can be challenging to say the least, when I have to put on my corporate hat. I try to maintain the focus in healthcare where it truly needs to be, on the patient.
There is a delicate balance that needs to be created in health care as we go forward. We need to work on creating health and wellness and stop waiting to treat disease. People need to become accountable for their health. We also need to make sure that we care for the caregivers as we care for the patients. Patient-focused quality care is essential.
How did The Truth Behind Our Titles® impact you?
The Truth Behind Our Titles® showed me that nothing is ever as it seems. No one wakes up one day having not participated in their journey to where they are without having experienced challenges, opportunities and divine interventions. Learning about “the rest of the story” – not just focusing on the title from individuals that are successful in life – can inspire others to follow their hearts passion and make a difference in the world.
We must live by Gandhi’s words: “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”
I share my truth every day with whomever is open to listen, but I didn’t always. For years I thought that it was enough to be a well-trained surgeon, “cutting out” diseased body parts. I am open and honest with my patients that removing the cancer is just the beginning of the healing journey. If all they want is to have their cancer skillfully removed, I can certainly do that but I will require them to get with the program and do their hard work that true healing requires.
What are you reading right now?
What makes you smile?
I am the mother of two amazing sons: Tom, 24 and Dean, 18. I have been married to my husband Joe for more than 28 years. I make time for family, exercise, fun and love being a beekeeper on my farm.
Seeing my sons happy and climbing to the top of Cathedral rock in Sedona with my family makes my heart sing, but when my patients find true peace in their hearts after a cancer diagnosis, then I know I have played my role not only as a surgeon but a healer.
Beth’s #ShareYourTruth Advice
- “Follow your hearts passion and the universe will conspire in your favor.” The Alchemist Paulo Coelho
- Be of service to humanity.
- You will learn more from your failures than you do from your successes!
- Seek guidance of a mentor, teacher or “guru.”
- Self Care!!! Remember to care for yourself before you care for others. If you are not whole and complete, then you are no good to your family, profession and the world.