Renee Ray knew she wanted to work in the medical field early on – in fact, it was in high school that she first considered becoming a doctor, but had concerns about balancing work with the family life she wanted. When her brother decided to transfer into Gannon University’s Physician Assistant program, Renee followed suit. Starting at Gannon in 1983, Ray notes that the idea of a “physician assistant” was very new to the area, meaning the definition of a physician assistant had to be accepted and trusted. Eventually, Renee would be the first physician assistant to be given certain privileges in the Meadville Medical Center.
For Renee, much of the excitement from her job comes from observing how the position has changed and grown over the past 34 years. She describes her work as patient-focused; doctors and surgeons do their best to connect with each and every patient, but much of their time is also spent in the operating room. Providers like Renee have the opportunity to spend more time with and ultimately get to know their patients, along with their concerns, hopes, and needs.
Renee’s career path was enlightened when she completed her last rotation in school in the field of — you guessed it — orthopedics. Having worked with Dr. Frndak since 1996, Renee has a knack for working with patients receiving total joint replacements. Not unlike Dr. Frndak, who we profiled last month, she describes the work as especially rewarding due to minimizing the pain these patients experience and being able to see them move again so quickly after their procedure.
Of course, this part of the job always leads back to Whole Health and the distinctive mission that sets it apart from other medical centers. The staff at Whole Health Joint Replacement Institute is focused on treating the patient’s entire body – their physical health, yes, but also their mental health, emotional health, and even their habits. This all helps the Whole Health staff to create customized care plans for their patients, because no two patients are the same (even if their operations are).
Outside of work, Renee enjoys spending time with her husband, three kids, and two grandkids. A lifelong Erie area resident, she enjoys spending her summers boating on Conneaut Lake and rooting for the Pittsburgh Penguins. The biggest benefit of Renee’s job is getting to see her patients’ quality of life improve, and she always enjoys seeing a patient outside of work to catch up with them.
About Our Customized Pre-Operative Care & Personalized Medical Support | Erie, Pa.
Whole Health Joint Replacement Institute is a medical and orthopedic practice that focuses on the comprehensive well-being of an individual throughout the processes of elective hip and knee replacement surgeries. We believe that caring relationships with our patients can help shape the results of surgery as much as the surgery itself. By providing our patients with personalized medical support and a patient concierge — someone they can always reach out to with questions or for assistance — Whole Health can encourage the quickest possible recovery by recommending lifestyle changes and alternative medical practices.Read More Contact