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Texas Oncology–Austin Central and South Austin Welcome Dr. Priyanka N. Kamath

December 02, 2020

Priyanka N. Kamath, M.D., M.S., gynecologic oncologist, is now seeing patients at Texas Oncology–Austin Central and South Austin. She shares how her career gives her the special opportunity to advocate for those in need.

What are you most proud of when you reflect on your medical career to date?

I recently completed fellowship training in which I had to wear many hats – social worker, administrator, and advocate. Working with an underserved population is what I found most gratifying. When I found that despite guidelines, the testing rate at our safety net hospital population was about 40% (far less than cancer centers), it became my personal mission to ensure testing was done for all our ovarian cancer patients and we were very successful in implementing this in the last year of my fellowship.

My career gives me the opportunity to foster lifelong relationships and care for women with cancer by offering them treatment, support, and comfort care throughout their illness and beyond."

Did you always know you wanted to be a doctor, specifically studying oncology?

I didn’t always know I wanted to go into medicine, and certainly not an oncologist specializing in women’s cancers. I chose my career after an experience I had in India prior to medical school providing aid to victims of sex trafficking, and it became clear that I wanted to pursue a career in women’s health to become an advocate for women. Later in residency I decided to subspecialize in oncology to work with cancer patients, who face their own unique challenges.

My career gives me the opportunity to foster lifelong relationships and care for women with cancer by offering them treatment, support, and comfort throughout their illness and beyond.

What are you most looking forward to as cancer treatment continues to evolve?

As treatment evolves, we can provide more long-term solutions. Diseases such as ovarian cancers, which were previously thought to be fatal with a very short survival, can now be treated over many years with more targeted and less toxic therapies. I believe that as we continue to research these areas, we will undoubtedly uncover other options.

What advice would you give someone who is aspiring to be a doctor?

The advice I would give young men and women pursuing a career in medicine is to really love your job and have a passion for what you do. It is passion that drives us and with that, work will undoubtedly feel less like work. When you work as hard as we do, it is important to feel a sense of purpose and joy. It is of utmost importance that while finding compassion for patients, we also find compassion for ourselves. Spend time with your families and do the things you love.

What are you regularly tuning into right now (podcast, show, musician, book, etc.)?

I’m into Netflix reality shows. I recently finished watching Indian Matchmaker, which was super entertaining for me being a first-generation American whose parents come from India. I am currently watching The Home Edit. I have a very type-A personality and absolutely love organization. Watching the hosts of this show go to homes and organize the space is awesome and personally inspirational!

For upcoming webinars visit www.TexasOncologyFoundation.org.