Telemedicine Focal Point: Becca Baumruck DVM, DACVR

This series highlights members of IDEXX Telemedicine Consultants as they discuss their individual career paths, passions and provide words of wisdom for fellow Veterinary Radiologists planning their careers. 

Becca Baumruck DVM, DACVR at Half Dome, Yosemite National Park, California

Role at IDEXX Telemedicine: Telemedicine Radiologist- Employee. Member of the Equine imaging team, and member of the medical team for telemedicine enhancement projects.

Undergraduate Studies: Animal Science at the University of Nevada, Reno

Vet School: Mississippi State University

Residency: Louisiana State University

Share a memory from your residency:   LSU had a very busy wildlife and exotics service, which gave me plenty of opportunities to work with unique, interesting, and rare animals. As a resident, I performed imaging exams and interventional radiology procedures on a tiger, an Asian Sun Bear, several alligators, a kangaroo, a wallaby, a Thompson’s gazelle, countless pet and wild birds, countless pet lizards, multiple pet turtles and tortoises, countless pocket pets, and even a pet goldfish!

Why did you choose a career as a Veterinary Radiologist? I’ve always loved the detective-like aspect of diagnostic imaging: using imaging modalities to search for abnormalities and tying them into the results of other diagnostic test results to determine a possible diagnosis has always been a fascinating and enjoyable aspect of veterinary medicine to me. I also love the collaborative effort that radiologists play in patient care- while we don’t have direct responsibility for patient care, we still have an important role in case management.

Passions/interests: I’m a life-long lover of horses and love spending as much time with and around horses as possible. I’m also a big fan of travel and outdoor activities, especially hiking, skiing and exploring national parks. I recently also picked up photography as a hobby, which is a great way to document the adventures my husband and I enjoy together.

Inspirational insights for new Radiologists entering the workforce:  This is a great time to be a radiologist. There are so many incredible advancements in technology in our field, and it is so exciting to be on the front lines of a rapidly changing and evolving field. Additionally, there are many different opportunities available to radiologists, including telemedicine, private specialty hospitals, teaching, or any combination thereof!

What is your favorite thing about Veterinary Radiology?  I enjoy the diversity of my workday. Radiology gives the opportunity to work on many different species and to collaborate with practitioners and specialists all over the world. No two days are ever alike!

Do you have a favorite imaging modality and why? I don’t think I could pick one modality. They all have their role in patient care and are all equally interesting and fun to work with.

What do you enjoy about your position with IDEXX? I really enjoy working with other radiologists are from all over the world and getting their insights on challenging cases. It’s always interesting to get the collective wisdom of such a diverse and intelligent group of people.

What tips would you like to share with Radiologists interested in Telemedicine?  Don’t be afraid to ask for help! IDEXX has built up a supportive, collaborative environment and really helps smooth the transition for those who are new to the teleradiology scene. Working in telemedicine is a little different than working in brick and mortar practice, but once you get acclimated, it’s a great way to work!

Tips on how to prepare for and then finally take boards:

For the qualifying exam: Try as much as you can to find connections in the material- learning to cross apply knowledge will help you gain a better understanding of the material on the exam, especially the physics. And while it is important to study physics for the qualifying exam, don’t forget to read up on current literature, relevant anatomy, and relevant physiology- these topics are equally important!

For the certifying exam: Before your exam, look at as many cases as possible! I also found it really helpful to review current literature that was focused on the imaging features of specific diseases, as this helped me identify key imaging features that would help me build a concise, relevant differential list. On the day of your exam, trust your years of training and be confident! You’ve been training for this moment for years- enjoy it while it lasts! You’ve got this!

Are there telemedicine myths you’d like to bust? I always heard that teleradiologist where isolated in their own little bubbles without any help. This is so not true! I collaborate with my fellow IDEXX teleradiologists on a regular basis, and I always appreciate their insights!

Do you have suggestions for those planning to work at home? Invest in ergonomic, comfortable equipment- desk, chair, mouse, etc. I really enjoy my standing desk (that can also be converted to a sitting desk)- using it as a standing desk can really improve my energy at the end of a shift. I also think it is important to have a dedicated office area where you can close the door for quiet concentration if needed. I also think establishing a work day routine (eating breakfast, getting dressed, etc) as though I was actually going to leave the house to work helps me focus when it is time to work and maximize my productivity.

What other information would you like to highlight about the IDEXX team? IDEXX is an amazing and diverse team that I am proud to be a part of!

Tell us what your perfect day looks like: Any day spent outside exploring Yosemite National Park or hanging out at Lake Tahoe (two of my favorite places) with my husband and family is just about as good as it gets!

Becca Baumruck DVM, DACVR at Half Dome, Yosemite National Park, California

Contact me if you’d like to learn more about the world of IDEXX Telemedicine Consultants:

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