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Women's long legacy of caring for others

by Dr. Roger Hicks


March is Women’s History month. Its roots are found in the first International Women’s Day, which was March 8, 1911. In 1978, a school district in Sonoma spent the week of March 8 celebrating the achievements of women. The idea caught on and in 1980 President Jimmy Carter proclaimed the week of March 8 National Women’s History Week. Six years later, Congress voted to expand the honor for the entire month of March. At Yubadocs, we are especially grateful to women who have made an impact in medicine. 

The first woman to earn a medical degree in the United States was abolitionist Elizabeth Blackwell, who graduated from Geneva Medical College in upstate New York in 1849. Finding it difficult to work in the field because of the prejudice against women in medicine, Dr. Blackwell opened the New York Infirmary for Indigent Women and Children with her sister Emily, the third woman to graduate from a U.S. medical school. 

California pioneers include women like Lucy Field, MD, who in 1876 became the first woman to graduate from a medical school in California. Drs. Charlotte Blake Brown, Sara Brown and Martha Bucknell established Children’s Hospital of San Francisco in 1875. And Dr. Emma Willits, one of the first female surgeons in the country, was the first to head a department of surgery when she assumed that role at Children’s Hospital of San Francisco. And, Dr. Margaret Allen, a graduate of UC San Diego Medical School, became the first woman in the world to perform a successful heart transplant while working at Stanford. And these are just a few! 

Whether working in health care as a trained professional or running a household, women are often called upon to be the first responders in their own homes for minor health concerns. A band-aid and kiss on the “owie” or a bowl of hot soup can go a long way toward healing, but not every problem can be treated at home. 

When things seem a bit more serious, receiving quality medical care quickly becomes the priority, not only for other family members, but also for the women who care for them! 

While we all may tend to put off going to the doctor, one ailment that is sure to get a woman’s attention is a urinary tract infection. Nothing says Urgent Care like a UTI! Sooner or later, most women will have a UTI. If you have ever experienced one, you know the quicker you are seen by a qualified clinician, the better. Symptoms include burning with urination, needing to urinate more often than usual, urinary urgency (feeling that you have to pee immediately), and foul smelling, cloudy or even bloody urine. Yubadocs diagnoses and treats UTI’s every day, not only providing quick relief, but also provide basic tips to help prevent future infections - like drinking lots of fluids and instructions on simple hygiene that can make all the difference.


While honoring women in history this March, be sure to honor yourself and seek treatment if you are experiencing any health concerns. The achievements of women throughout history, including in medicine, are extraordinary. We honor you! 

A director of the Urgent Care Association of America from 2011 to 2017, Dr. Roger Hicks served as the Association’s treasurer and then secretary. He is a founder and current board member of the Urgent Care Assurance Company, a malpractice company specializing in urgent care. He is the founding President of the California Urgent Care Association. He is also the founding president of the South Yuba River Citizens League and served on SYRCL’s Board of Directors for 30 years12