Member of the Month: Terrance Hines, MD
TAFP Board member followed parents’ footsteps into health care
After completing an undergraduate degree and a medical degree at Texas A&M and a residency at John Peter Smith, choosing family medicine was a natural decision for Terrance Hines, MD, who knew he wanted to be a family doctor since before beginning medical school, thanks to his nurse parents and his childhood physician. Since completing his residency in 2009, Hines has been with Scott & White in Austin. He is currently the medical director for three clinics and a clinical assistant professor at Texas A&M College of Medicine.
Why did you choose family medicine, and what’s your favorite aspect of it? Were you inspired by anyone?
Both of my parents are nurses, so I grew up around health care. Even before starting medical school, I knew I wanted to be a family doctor. I had the same doctor throughout my entire childhood and his compassion and expertise defined what being a doctor meant to me.
It is important for me to be a member of AAFP and TAFP because:
These organizations advocate not only for me professionally but also for my patients. CME activities, educational materials, advocacy, and outreach programs are all valuable tools to deal with the ever-changing health care climate. Meetings provide opportunities to fellowship with other doctors and to learn best practices.
What has your experience been like as the special constituency member on the TAFP Board of Directors?
I am completing my third and final one-year term on the Board. It has been an exceptional learning experience on how our organization governs itself as well as shapes health care policy. Particularly during our transition in governance structure, I hope I have been a strong advocate for all of the constituency groups (GLBT, women, minorities, international medical graduates, and new physicians). I have had the opportunity to interact with other national constituency leaders through National Conference on Special Constituencies.
What led you to be involved in TAFP business the way you are?
I became involved in the Academy as a resident and was able to attend NCSC as a delegate several years ago. This exposure to the process of resolution writing piqued my interest in health care policy and belief that our organization can be on the forefront of the evolving health care market.
What is the most interesting/memorable experience you have had when dealing with a patient?
As physicians, we have the incredible privilege to be invited into our patients’ lives in multiple ways—celebrating the birth of a new child, dealing with the passing of a loved one, common colds, and uncommon diseases. It is hard for me to choose a favorite or most special experience because they are all, in their own way, special. I have in my file drawer a folder of cards and notes that patients have given me. On my bookshelf are a few small tokens of appreciation. On days when I’ve had about all I can take of prior authorizations, insurance company hassles, and paperwork, I can look at these things and am instantly reminded of how lucky I am to be a family doctor.
If you weren’t a doctor what would you be doing with your career?
My parents like to tell the story that as a child I wanted to either be a fireman or a garbage collector—both got to ride on the back of big trucks and I thought that sounded pretty cool. I think I would have a hard time finding anything else as special, interesting, challenging, and meaningful as being a doctor. However, I really love teaching medical students and would probably pursue a career in academics.
How do you spend your free time?
My husband and I have a very active 2-year-old who consumes most of our time—we love going to the park with our French Bulldog Hugo, playing in the yard, and finding new adventures in Austin. When I’m not busy with him, I enjoy running, grilling, going to the movies, travelling, and spending time with friends. I also love Texas A&M football.
TAFP’s Member of the Month program highlights Texas family physicians in TAFP News Now and on the TAFP website. We feature a biography and a Q&A with a different TAFP member each month and his or her unique approach to family medicine. If you know an outstanding family physician colleague who you think should be featured as a Member of the Month or if you’d like to tell your own story, nominate yourself or your colleague by contacting TAFP by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (512) 329-8666. View past Members of the Month here.