Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Many Hats of Dr. Beth Dayton

There are a lot more people who bike than sometimes we see. And bicycling doesn't always have to be front-and-center. Sometimes it's just an ordinary, but important, part of a life.

In the paper today is an article about Dr. Beth Dayton's work as a surgeon specializing in breast cancer.

Though the article talks some about the other hats she wears, an important one is mostly implied.
Dayton's advocacy for her patients goes beyond the doctor's office and operating room. She also chairs the Breast Committee at Salem Hospital, an interdisciplinary group that covers everything from surgery, radiation and oncology to finances and social welfare. Every month the group meets and tackles problems one by one, with the goal of making sure all of the components work together seamlessly to make the patient's experience a good one.
In 2005 Beth won an Alice Award for her local bike advocacy and especially her work on the Croisan Trail, a partially improved trail between Croisan Scenic Way and Spring Street, tucked in on the slope above Croisan Creek Road.

In addition to her advocacy, she also commutes often by bike and she even has a strong sense for bike fun!
Being around her patients has taught her to get out there and enjoy her life, which is exactly what she has done. Dayton takes every opportunity to enjoy all of the great outdoor activities Oregon has to offer. She enjoys travel, mountain biking, backpacking and skiing with her husband and two sons, ages 17 and 21. And each year, she meets up with her siblings and dad in some beautiful location.
Here she's at the State Fair with the bike drill team from a couple of seasons ago.

Active transportation is a great way to get physical activity into one's lifestyle - something that can help stave off or prevent cancer. And may be an important part of management after treatment.

One day, hopefully, as it is in many European countries, bicycling in every way will become banal and ordinary, ubiquitously invisible and not worth talking about. In the meantime, it's good to remember that the person biking on the road might be your surgeon.

(Top photo from the Statesman Journal)

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