Dr Christina Rice joins Monarch Women’s Wellness Bayview Physician’s Group

by Monarch Women's Wellness on April 12, 2016 · 0 comments

Rice_Christina
Dr. Christina Rice fulfills a lifelong dream of practicing medicine in her hometown, By Lee Belote (as featured in The Shopper)

Everyone has a childhood dream. Many children imagine becoming police officers, firemen, teachers, and doctors. For most, these life ambitions waver over the years and most often morph into an entirely different path. That was not the case for Dr. Christina Rice. She always wanted to be a doctor.

At the tender age of five, Dr. Rice vividly remembers sketching a drawing of herself in a white coat sitting behind a doctor’s desk. She insists that it’s always been her life plan and is still in awe that she has achieved her goal.

“Who holds onto a dream for 25 years?” Dr. Rice asks. “I’m literally living my dream.”

Dr. Rice, a local girl from Nansemond River in Suffolk, started her journey by attending Norfolk State University on a full academic scholarship. Next, she attended the Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine in Blacksburg, Virginia. She completed her studies by returning home for her OB/GYN residency training at Riverside Regional Medical Center in Newport News. 

Dr. Rice says she was happy to come home for her residency training because it afforded her the opportunity to be with her younger brother while he was finishing high school. When she wasn’t working, she attended his football games and wrestling matches.

“I love working with women. I love being in the operating room with them, consulting with them in the office, and delivering their babies. All aspects of women’s health are important to me.” —Dr. Christina Rice

Currently a Junior Fellow of the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Dr. Rice received many awards during her residency, but was most proud of being chosen as Chief Resident during her last year. 

She explains that the coveted position is voted on by the residents themselves, all of whom were her peers. Her duties included representing the program and the residents in Graduate Medical Education meetings and other physician and medical staff meetings. In addition, she was responsible for setting the schedule for all of the residents.

While in medical school, Dr. Rice also had the opportunity to go on two different medical mission trips. She spent one week in Honduras and one in Guatemala, where she was able to hone her skills in primary care. 

Dr. Rice explains, “While in your residency, your training is geared towards your chosen specialty. But these mission trips gave me the chance to perform more diversified kinds of medicine. These were great opportunities for me to help people who had little or no access to medical care, and the experience recalibrated my perspective and priorities in life.”

Women’s health had always fascinated Dr. Rice, so obstetrics and gynecology came naturally. Being adept at treating women during pregnancy and in the delivery room was one half of the equation, while making overall female reproductive health a primary concern rounded out her professional specialty.

While in medical school, Dr. Rice had the opportunity to deliver 30 babies in a 4 week period. It was then that her enthusiasm for OB/GYN was fully validated. 

“When I finished my OB/GYN rotation, I thought to myself: ‘I want to do this,’” Dr. Rice says. “At that moment, I became fully committed to practicing this specialty. I love working with women. I love being in the operating room with them, consulting with them in the office, and delivering their babies. I have the opportunity to help women with some of the most important milestones of their lives: birth control, childbirth, menopause. These are extremely personal and sensitive health issues, and women need a doctor who really understands and cares about them.”

Laura, a former patient of Dr. Rice’s, couldn’t say enough about the quality of care she received during an important time in her life.

“Dr. Rice delivered my second child in February of 2014. She was very attentive to my needs and was always there if I needed something. I felt very safe having her deliver my baby. She was confident and calming and checked on me every day during my hospital stay. I’ve had great doctors in the past, but Dr. Rice surpasses them all.”

Dr. Rice is passionate about many aspects of her job, but birth control holds a special interest. She cites that over half of the pregnancies in the United States are unplanned. She believes that pregnancy is something women should go into knowingly and willingly.

“I have the opportunity to help women with some of the most important milestones of their lives: birth control, childbirth, menopause. These are extremely personal and sensitive health issues, and women need a doctor who really understands and cares about them.”

—Dr. Christina Rice

“Birth control has so many positive side-effects,” she says, “including regulating a woman’s period. Think about how much time, energy, and money women spend every month on having a period. Now imagine how much of that you could save if your period was three days a month, or four times a year, or a couple days of spotting here or there, or nothing at all. It can be pretty freeing.”

Part of Dr. Rice’s job is meeting a wide range of people from different backgrounds and ages. Dr. Rice enjoys talking to the young and old. She particularly likes the opportunity to talk to teenagers about their education and life goals. It’s a special treat when she gets to meet teens from her alma mater or schools from her district. 

“I like to give them advice on careers and anything that might help them in their path,” she says. “Sometimes you just need an encouraging word from an outside adult who’s not your parent.”

One of Dr. Rice’s fondest memories from her career was having the chance to deliver her best friend’s baby. It was just one of the benefits of practicing medicine in her hometown.

“I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else,” Dr. Rice concludes. “My family and friends all live here!”

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