"During medical school, I discovered that alleviating the suffering of children inspired me above all else, and so I chose Pediatrics for my specialty training. In Pediatrics, no one thought it was unprofessional to love one’s patients, and I did so wholeheartedly. I eventually moved from Pediatrics into adult end-of-life care. I always loved my work --so much, in fact, that I usually felt more energized at the end of my long workdays than at the beginning. I credit this to the deep well of human caring that being a doctor took me to, as well as to the strong bond that giving care and receiving care creates between doctors and patients. These, together with the privilege I had to repeatedly witness both the miracle of birth and the mystery of death, humbled me and nourished my soul." ~ Betsy MacGregor
Betsy is a passionate advocate of integrative, patient-centered medical care that honors the psychological, social and spiritual dimensions of health and healing as well as the physical. Having been a cancer patient in her own hospital, she has a deep appreciation for the miraculous gift that life truly is.
For nearly thirty years Betsy was a senior staff pediatrician and Director of Adolescent Medicine at Beth Israel Medical Center, a major academic medical center in New York City. There she founded and directed the Pediatric Pain Management Program and the hospital-wide Program for Humanistic and Complementary Health Care. In addition, as a George Soros Faculty Scholar with the Open Society Institute’s Project on Death in America, she designed and directed a three-year research project entitled Dying and the Inner Life, aimed at learning from people with terminal illness about what it means to face the reality of one’s own dying.
Photo by Beyond My Ken
Betsy has conducted numerous educational programs on patient-centered care for health care professionals around issues of psychological, social and spiritual dimensions of health and healing and has spoken widely about them to the general public.
Betsy has a BA from Wellesley College, a Masters of Science in Neurobiology from New York University Graduate School, and an MD from Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City.
Now retired from medical practice, Betsy lives with her husband, Charles Terry, on Whidbey Island in the Pacific Northwest where she is a writer, a speaker, and a founding Board Member of Enso House, a local hospice-home that provides compassionate, holistic care for terminally ill patients and their families. She and Charles have two grown children who live in New York City and San Francisco. She is also a staff member for the Bravewell Fellows Integrative Medicine Program and has served as an integrative medicine advisor with the Bravewell Collaborative, a working group of philanthropists and health care leaders dedicated to bringing the principles and practices of integrative medicine into mainstream health care and medical education.