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Transcript of Karen Shoffner, Chief of Radiology:

"I've been with the VA since 1994. I came here in, actually I came here straight from my training, and to be honest with you, I wasn't sure I wanted to stay. And that's because I really didn't know anything about the VA. And little did I know that I was about to embark on probably the best career move of my life.

We have seen tremendous improvements in the way that the VA provides and delivers healthcare for their veterans. And presently, the VA outranks the private sector on numerous clinical performance measures, and in fact is currently recognized as an international leader in the healthcare industry.

I never imagined I would be sitting here as chief of radiology five years after working here. But the facility encourages you to consider advancement, and I was approached and thought about it, and given the opportunity to test my abilities. You can go as far as you want to.

My background is in musculoskeletal radiology, so I tend to limit my clinical work to what we call MSK radiology, which is MRI, predominantly MRI, and, and some plain films.

I think the VA organization supports and promotes a healthy lifestyle. And they allow their employees the opportunity to have a balanced lifestyle, and work a more regular schedule, compared to private practice sector. So there's an opportunity to maintain your skills in whatever field that you're working in.

One of the benefits of the working at the VA is their technology is state of the art, and we have many innovative ways that we provide healthcare to our veteran population. Whether they are local near the facility, or happen to be more, in a more remote location. For example, the patients that we provide imaging services for at the Tuscaloosa, Alabama VA facility are benefited because they don't have to travel great distances for their exams.

It's incredibly fun. I love my job. And how many people do you know that can honestly say I love my job, and I look forward to coming to work each and every day?

I think one of the greatest attributes of working at the VA is that the VA values its employees. It encourages your development and provides you with numerous opportunities for growth.

If you're not sure where you wanna go work, think about what you wanna do and how you wanna practice medicine. You come to the VA, you can practice medicine how you learned it in medical school or in your allied health profession. Because we focus on the patient. We put out veterans and patients in the center of the healthcare model. You don't have to worry as much about the business side of medicine.

I also like to tell prospective candidates that the VA has it all. It's a complete package. You have rewarding, exciting, and stimulating career opportunities, great employee benefits, balanced lifestyle, unique and special patients. You will never bet bored and you will always have a great time.”

Please visit the VA Career Website to see the video and full transcript of Dr. Karen Shoffner

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