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Like mother, like daughter

Like mother, like daughter

A second Dr. Ellent joins the West Jefferson Medical Center Family

West Jefferson Medical Center now has another doctor on the staff caring for patients. Dr. Elizabeth Ellent joined West Jefferson; and for long-time patients, her last name may sound very familiar as she is not the only Dr. Ellent to have strolled the halls of the Westbank medical facility. Her mother, Dr. Libby Ellent, was a long-time family physician at West Jefferson who is now retired but left a lasting impression on her daughter. “I remember as a child walking in the mall and patients coming up to my mom and telling her how much they loved her and how caring she was. I knew from an early age, I wanted to be a doctor like her, and now I am, and I couldn’t be happier,” notes Dr. Elizabeth Ellent.

While the younger Dr. Ellent never wavered when it came to following in her mother’s footsteps, she did choose a different path when it came to practice. Her focus is Hematology and Oncology, which focuses on treating blood disorders and cancer. While some days may be challenging or emotionally taxing, Dr. Ellent says her mother is her role model when it comes to her patients. “You go through many, many years of schooling and learn everything about the human body, but little time is devoted to learning about empathy and humanity. I’m blessed in that I saw that side of medicine growing up with my mom, and I do my best to emulate her every day.”

Though only in practice a few months, Dr. Ellent already has a busy caseload of patients despite the challenges of COVID-19, and she says she feels right at home and for a good reason. She spent a lot of time around West Jefferson Medical Center growing up. Not only did she work in her mom’s office, but she was also a summer volunteer in the hospital, where she won the Best Volunteer Award that resulted in a scholarship from the hospital. Now, the 4.0 Summa Cum Laude LSU trained doctor is making a name of her own in the medical field, which is something she’s been waiting to do since a child.

As for her chosen field, Dr. Ellent says there are pros and cons, but she states, “Oncology really spoke to me because I am passionate about helping those facing the difficult journey through cancer. I see myself as the quarterback of a team, where I guide my patients while at the same time work with other medical specialists to coordinate the best treatment plan,” though Dr. Ellent admits that sometimes those plans don’t end the way everyone had hoped they would. When that occurs, she says her journey with a patient takes on a whole new role as she not only consoles the patient but their family.

“In my practice, there are certainly some difficult days, especially when you lose a patient,” Dr. Ellent notes with a pause, then adds, “It’s heartbreaking because you’ve invested so much time seeing patients and their family. Despite some sad times, I’m living my dream as an oncologist at West Jefferson, and I’m doing everything I can to help those living on the Westbank or in the region. I love what I do, and yes, I often say, (hashtag) #blessed!”