Physician practice manager for St. Dominic Family Medicine – Dogwood Ryan McBride has always known he wanted to be part of taking care of those around him.
“As a child, I was always caring for the animals who needed a home or care,” he says. “My parents weren’t sure if I would end up taking care of people or animals! Then, I helped to take care of grandfather when he was ill. He had a long and difficult journey with diabetes.”
McBride enjoys being around people, loving the interaction and learning from patients about the ways we are able to help them, especially navigating through the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Journey to Work in Healthcare
“As I was beginning my career, I had a summer job at the hospital in my hometown of Eupora, Mississippi,” McBride says. “I split my time between nursing and radiology and planned to pursue one of these fields. When I was presented with the opportunity to start nursing school, my then manager in radiology encouraged me to begin in X-ray because he had an immediate opportunity for me on his team.”
McBride has been part of St. Dominic’s ministry for 16 years, first in MRI/diagnostic imaging before moving into clinic management after 15 years.
When considering his career influences, McBride thinks of two managers: a director of nursing and a director of radiology.
“One hired me and gave me positive affirmations of who she knew I would become, and the other called me and encouraged me to pursue radiology and gave me a concrete opportunity as part of his team,” McBride remembers. The radiology director “was persistent and candid in his recruitment. He saw my current value and my future potential. He was always encouraging of me and helped shape my journey into healthcare.”
Importance of Workplace Diversity
Diversity in our workplace is a priority for our health system and is something McBride values.
“I think there are many legacy issues that our nation as a whole has to learn to deal with. Having diversity, especially in healthcare when people can experience some of their lowest times, is a step toward addressing those issues,” he says. “It allows us to better provide trusted care that people need and to more accurately reflect the diversity of the communities we serve.”
Many factors determine a person’s overall health outside of healthcare, including access to transportation, healthy foods and safe living conditions. Screening for and addressing these social determinants of health is a standard part of the care provided by our health system as we work to address health equity for those we serve.
“Access to healthcare is the most critical health equity issue in my opinion,” McBride says.
Honoring Black History
“Black History Month is an opportunity to review and celebrate the people who have the same culture and who share experiences like mine,” McBride says. “For me, it’s a time to reflect on their legacy, and it makes me proud to see their accomplishments.”
When thinking about the contributions of Black Americans throughout history, McBride remembers Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.; George Washington Carver and Maya Angelou. McBride recently shared his thoughts on Dr. King’s legacy in this video.
McBride has adapted a prayer Washington Carver often prayed and uses it daily: “What can I do to be a blessing to society?”
Of Angelou, McBride says, “I absolutely love everything she has written. There is just so much wisdom in her words.” Two of his favorites are her poem, Still I Rise and a quote: “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”
Building Beloved Community
This year in recognition of Black History Month, our health system is reflecting on The King Center’s 2023 theme to celebrate Dr. King’s work and life: It Starts with Me: Cultivating a Beloved Community Mindset.
“Cultivating community is one of the things that I most love to do,” McBride says. “I do this by serving others in ways that are meaningful to me. I’m involved in distributing needed items like winter coats and other necessities for those in need. Also, I dress as Santa each year for the children in my community. It is so much fun and brings me so much joy!”
McBride considers cultivating community as an extension of his personal desire and call to care for those around him.
Our DEI Commitment
Our ministry’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion supports culturally competent care education for our team members all year long, including during Black History Month each February.