Meet Dr. Lee
For Pandora Lee, M.D., a Hill Health internal medicine specialist who now practices in Oakland, her favorite aspects of being a doctor are the relationships she builds with her patients and the continuous learning opportunities that come with being a doctor.
“Medicine is fun because of the interaction with others. As an internal medicine physician, I interact with a lot of physician specialists who help care for my patients,” says Dr. Lee. “My knowledge base is always expanding because of those interactions and I love using that knowledge to help other patients.”
After growing up and attending college in Berkeley, Dr. Lee moved to Louisiana for medical school and an internal medicine residency. She began her career in 1997 and spent the first several years of her career practicing in Mississippi until Hurricane Katrina destroyed her home in 2005. She and her husband, also a physician, relocated to Arkansas because the state desperately needed physicians to care for the thousands of hurricane refugees who had relocated there. She returned to her home state in 2008.
Dr. Lee previously practiced in Concord before joining Hill Health. Since finishing up her residency, she had juggled seeing patients both in her practice and in the hospital, while also balancing family life. “I realized that to adequately care for my patients, I also had to care for myself,” she says. “As a Hill Health physician, I can concentrate on caring for patients in my practice, coordinating care with specialists and preventing unnecessary hospitalizations. It’s a win-win situation.”
Dr. Lee takes the time to get to know her patients well in order to provide the very best care. “I need to understand the whole picture – a patient’s support system, cultural beliefs, lifestyle and habits – so that I can adequately treat them,” she says. “If someone lacks access to transportation, for example, I know it will be difficult for them to go to physical therapy appointments.”
Dr. Lee urges patients to be completely honest with their physicians. “If you haven’t been taking your medication recently or you smoke occasionally, let us know. We’re not here to judge you, we’re here to take care of you,” she emphasizes.
Away from the office, Dr. Lee maintains a full and busy life. She supports her daughter in her equestrian riding and martial arts pursuits. Dr. Lee also runs half marathons, and plays the guitar and piano. “Life is hectic. I feel it’s important to have physical, mental, spiritual and creative outlets to balance things out,” she says.
Specialty: Internal Medicine
Medical School: Tulane University Hospital & Clinic
Residency: Alton Ochsner Medical Foundation
Board Certification: American Board of Internal Medicine 1997- 2017
Languages: Cantonese, Spanish, English
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