Have You Met Dr. Betty Chu?

September 01, 2012

If you see Betty Chu, M.D., M.B.A., in the halls at Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital, she may actually be having a meeting while walking. As the new chief medical officer, she tries to stand more than she sits and always takes the stairs instead of the elevator. Living an active life is just one of the ways she leads by example.

Dr. Chu specializes in obstetrics and gynecology and has more than 20 years of patient care and health system management experience. “I work with the executive team to run the clinical services for the entire hospital,” she says. “I’m really looking forward to working with different departments that share the goal of improving the patient experience.”

A more relaxing environment

Dr. Chu is especially focused on easing patients’ worries. “Reducing anxiety requires us to think about the type of experience we want to create for our patients,” she says.

At Henry Ford West Bloomfield, everything from the relaxing décor to communication among providers fosters a greater sense of calm and support for patients. “Limiting patients’ stress improves their quality of life,” says Dr. Chu.

A focus on women

With her obstetrics and gynecology background, Dr. Chu also helps women in particular to focus on their health. Here are her top three tips.

Say “no” more often. “Women often focus so much on caring for everyone else that their own health takes a backseat,” says Dr. Chu. “When you don’t say ‘yes’ to everything, you’ll have more time to focus on your own wellbeing.”

Get moving. “Sitting is the new smoking because it’s associated with so many diseases,” she says. “Just start moving.” Dr. Chu wears a pedometer to make sure she gets in 10,000 steps per day.

Perform breast self-exams. Once a month, check both breasts for any lumps, thickening or hardening. Dr. Chu notes that “with early detection, there’s a higher chance of surviving breast cancer.”

State-of-the-art screenings

The Francee & Benson Ford Jr. Breast Care & Wellness Center offers the most advanced breast cancer screening technology available today. The combination of digital mammography and on-site specialists ensures that every patient receives a comprehensive screening and speedy results. Women with an average risk for breast cancer should start annual screenings at age 40. Check with your doctor to see if you need to be tested sooner.