Meagan M. Roenker, MD
Tidewater Physicians Multispecialty Group
Q. Why did you choose family medicine as your practice area and what do you enjoy most about your job? A. I truly enjoy the connection and conversation. I liked a variety of fields during medical school and knew I wanted to practice outpatient medicine where I could incorporate women’s health and minor procedures. Your PCP is typically the first person you come to with any complaint and I enjoy putting the pieces together to help people feel better.
Q. What are the top three things you recommend to patients in terms of making overall healthy lifestyle choices? A. Aim for 150 minutes of cardiovascular exercise per week, eat a less processed diet that is more plant-based and avoid tobacco. Life has plenty of ups and downs and we all go through phases; oftentimes we aren’t doing as well in an area as we’d like to be, but you can always get back on track or restart.
Q. Why are annual wellness exams important and how can patients make the most of these visits? A. These are the visits where I make sure everything is up to date and there are no loose ends. It can be tempting to “save up” problems for the wellness exam or annual physical, but this actually makes it challenging to optimize wellness discussions and health maintenance like cancer screening at your visit. We can do a more thorough workup of concerns at problem-based office visits. The most important thing is to just come in for the annual wellness exam every year—we will take care of the rest!
Q. What is a key challenge you face in offering comprehensive care for your patients? A. Time. I value my time in the care I can provide my patients, but there are always demands for staying on schedule and the time it takes to chart, answer messages, address labs, educate students, run our practice and enjoy life with my family.
Q. Are there any new treatments or technologies that you are particularly excited about in your field? A. In the last several years, we have a much broader scope of diabetes medications that give many more options to treat. Some of these medicines also prevent progression of chronic kidney disease, decrease heart failure and cardiovascular mortality, and help with weight loss.