Q&A with Theresa Clemmons, MD
Communications Chair

Where you work:
Fort Dodge Correctional Facility – Iowa Department of Corrections

Typical day in your shoes?
Interestingly, the many of my patient appointments are similar to an outpatient clinic in the community. Incarcerated patients receive appointment passes and report to health services at their scheduled time. However, there are also elements of the job that are unpredictable including acute crises and changes in facility operations due to security concerns. A typical day includes assessing the acute needs of any patients in an observation status (similar acuity to those hospitalized in the community) and routine follow-ups with my patients at an outpatient level of care.

What’s your favorite part of being a psychiatrist?
All of it. Psychiatry is the field of medicine which just seems to really click for me – from clinical patient care, psychopharmacology, psychiatric research – I really enjoy it all!

What’s the best advice you’ve ever heard?
From my photography teacher: “Strive for simplicity.” My addition: Not only in photography, but life, too.

Favorite vacation experience/destination:  
Luckily there are too many to describe: from the beauty of Alaska’s Inside Passage to the breathtaking views of the Grand Canyon to the beaches of Hawaii and on to the pure joy of Walt Disney World – each adventure very memorable and special. However, if I must narrow it down, the adventures I truly cherish are the road trips across the country spanning from coast-to-coast; we love to experience diversity of each region from the food, the culture, the scenery, and the climate. After a road trip from Iowa to Philadelphia for a conference, the kids would start chanting “Philadelphia” in an effort to persuade us to make the trip again…sometimes it really is about the journey and not the destination!

If you could sit next to anyone on a plane, who would you choose?
Anyone who brings individually packed snacks to share…or Costco size…I respect anyone who brings anything Costco-sized onto a plane.

Favorite TV show: 
Right now: Bachelor in Paradise or Gravity Falls. Of all time: West Wing or Seinfeld.

What’s one thing that can instantly make your day better?
A pleasant greeting or a smile. Jokes are great, too

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website.