I bring life into the world and science into everything I do. I am Henry.
His unabashed love for science was evident from an early age. So, it came as a surprise to few when Dr. Neil Simmerman pursued a career in medicine. His decision to serve in the field of obstetrics and women’s health, on the other hand, was not one he would have anticipated when he began med school.
“My Master’s research was in urology. But when we started doing our clinical rotations, there was something about obstetrics and gynecology that really struck a chord within me. This is happy medicine.”
Obstetricians and gynecologists don’t always get the credit for innovative breakthroughs that their peers in cardiology and cancer care often do. Dr. Simmerman attributes some of that to the age of the field. After all, having babies is as old as humanity.
But he’s quick to remind us that the safety of childbirth has improved dramatically in the past century. Prior to that, post-partum hemorrhage was, tragically, the number one killer of women. Within Dr. Simmerman’s 18-year career alone — the ability of his peers to intervene and improve the health of premature babies has grown substantially as well.
Of course, women’s health is as massive of a field as it is critical. So, it’s not uncommon that Dr. Simmerman’s work intersects with that of other services such as oncology. He proudly notes that one of his colleagues, Dr. Richard Leach, is leading the effort to open Henry Ford Health’s first onco-fertility clinic — which will work to ensure women battling cancer don’t lose their chance to one day experience the gift of motherhood.
Dr. Simmerman takes pride in the fact that he is the director of the Ryan Family Planning training program. This program gives residents crucial procedural training that allows them to help women on both sides of the pregnancy spectrum — those who want a child but have been unsuccessful in conception as well as those who are pregnant, but for a variety of complex reasons, cannot become mothers.
We are really married to the mission of seeing and experiencing things through the eyes of our patients here.” Dr. Simmerman proclaims. “We make sure that every patient’s experience is as robust as the state-of-the-art care they receive.”
As a family man himself, Dr. Simmerman knows just how important it is for women to be comfortable and have a close relationship with their OB-GYN. It’s evident that he believes in the experience that Henry Ford Health provides as he and his wife chose to deliver their first daughter here. At the time, he was actually working for a different health system.
When he’s not serving families and putting moms-to-be at ease, Dr. Simmerman loves playing the blues on his guitar (poorly, he admits) and spending quality time with his wife and kids — the three prides of his life, as he puts it. His career path has certainly given him some interesting perspective as a father. He jokes that his children know where babies come from, but not how they’re made yet.
With a genuine smile, he adds, “We’re going to keep it right there for now.”