By Nancy R. Elliott
The Herald Bulletin
ANDERSON, Ind. — After earning her credentials as an M.D., Emi Bays is back in her hometown.
“It’s been nice to see people I haven’t seen. It’s been so fun to come back here,” said Bays. “It’s just neat how many people know each other. There’s so much connectedness.”
Dr. Emi Bays opened the doors to her Anderson practice last week. She’s a pediatrician with St. Vincent Anderson Regional Hospital, in practice with Dr. Teri Shulz-Compton.
Bays grew up in Anderson, graduating from Anderson High School in 2002. From there, she was off to Indiana University in Bloomington, then on to Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland, Ohio.
Bays did her pediatric residency at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical.
Along the way, Bays met Joachim Walker, from the Cleveland area, and the pair married in 2010. Walker works in pharmaceutical sales, based in Muncie. The couple is expecting a child in October.
Bays, 29, is tickled pink to be back in Anderson, surrounded by family, and excited about her career.
“The job opportunity really matched all the things I wanted to do,” said Bays. Continuity of care and the ability to establish relationships with patients is high on her list of priorities. St. Vincent gives Bays the total picture of daily clinic work, catching up with the newborns in the hospital, and visiting her patients in the hospital.
“It’s really a nice mix,” said Bays. She added, “I felt like it was a really warm place, inviting.”
Bays is also very pleased to be in practice with Shulz-Compton, a pediatrician with more than 20 years experience under her belt.
Bays said that her own dad and his family provided a lot of the inspiration that led to her decision to choose medicine as a career. Two of her aunts had breast cancer. Bays’ aunt, Vickie Boone, of Lapel, made a profound impression on Bays.
“I was very close,” said Bays. She said her aunt had a special way with kids, and loved being around them. “She made us feel comfortable and well-taken care of, and she respected us.” When Boone confronted cancer, Bays often went along to chemo treatments or doctor’s appointments. When Bays was just 13, however, she lost her beloved aunt.
“She was a very special person in my life,” said Bays. “I really wanted to go into medicine as a way to honor her.” Bays also shares her aunt’s passion for working with kids, and applying it through medicine.
“There’s so many things we can do to keep kids healthy,” said Bays. “Preventive medicine is very important.” She stresses that vaccinations, of course, are key, but there’s a host of things parents need to know to keep kids healthy.
As Bays prepares for the arrival of her own little boy, she’s gaining on her perspective as doctor.
“I always did my best to be empathetic, but I think it has made me start to get a little bit more understanding of the intense love and concern of a parent, and it will make me a better pediatrician.”
Moving, starting a new job, and getting ready for a new baby are keeping Bays pretty busy, but she does have things she enjoys when she gets the opportunity for downtime. That includes running, snow skiing, trying out new restaurants, and spending time with family.
Once Bays gets in the groove, she’d like to get more involved with promoting literacy. “It’s kind of a passion for me.”
Bays can be reached by calling 646-8727 or look her up on www.stvincent.org.
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