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Family Man: A Family Medicine Physician on the Army Healthcare Team

As a family physician and AMEDD officer on the U.S. Army healthcare team, Lt. Col. Matthew Fandre is able to be a family man at home while practicing Army medicine.

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Family Man: A Family Medicine Physician on the Army Healthcare Team

As a family physician and AMEDD officer on the U.S. Army healthcare team, Lt. Col. Matthew Fandre is able to be a family man at home while practicing Army medicine.

I'm Matthew Fandre. I'm a Lieutenant Colonel in the Army. And I'm an Army physician and currently at MEDCOM, which is the medical headquarters. I come from a long line of medical providers in my family. My grandfather was a family practice doc, and my dad was a medic in Vietnam. And so, for me to be able to serve and join the Army was something I always wanted to do. So I was able to go to West Point and also to medical school. And I chose family medicine because I really wanted to take care of the whole family. You get to be part of that family, and really understand how those dynamics interplay. And being able to take care of that whole unit and not just the individual really is an amazing opportunity. And then from there I went to 160th SOAR which is the special operations aviation regiment. So I've been able to go downrange and serve our Soldiers where it's most important, which is out on the battlefield. The U.S. Army healthcare Team is really dedicated to the future of Army medicine, and the Solider Center Medical Home is our opportunity to reshape everything that is primary care for the Soldiers. We want it to be comprehensive. We want it to be well coordinated. So we've taken our physical therapists, we've taken our behavioral health experts, we've taken our dieticians and we've put them all within that home because we know those are the needs that our Soldiers have most. You're really in this together. It is a team sport. You want to support each other because if everyone is supported and everyone does well, everyone is going to succeed and you're going to be able to deliver the best care possible. There's a huge emphasis on mentorship. I've been blessed in the fact that I've had countless mentors who have taken time to invest into me to make me better. And now I'm able to pass that on to the next generation as well, and so I think that does make us special. There is just that natural bond that anyone who has served gets. And that you take care of one another, take care of our Soldiers, our family members. And that's another big part of this, is that there needs to be time for family. We know that there needs to be balance and our organization really understands that. So I've got three wonderful children, and my wife is the rock that kind of keeps us all together. There is no way I could do this without my family. I've got to tell you, at the end of the day I feel pretty proud about what I do, but it's more than just being a physician. Sometimes you're doing research, some days you get to jump out of airplanes. If you want those challenges, if you want those opportunities, if you want to see if you can do more, this is the place to do it.
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