Meet Melissa Nicole Burnside, M.D., MHS

Melissa Nicole Burnside, M.D., MHS, joins the department as a National Clinician Scholar. She earned a B.A. in Public Health from Johns Hopkins University in 2007, an MHS in Environmental Health from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in 2008, and an M.D., from The Ohio State University College of Medicine in 2016. She completed a residency in social medicine and family medicine at Montefiore Medical Center. Burnside will care for patients at Duke Family Medicine Center.

Why did you choose to join the Department of Family Medicine & Community Health?

Duke is now a part of the National Clinician Scholars Program. This training program is providing me with the skills to engage in data-driven inquiry, policy-impactful rigorous research, sensitive community-based participatory research, and transformation of health care practice. I interviewed with the Chair Dr. Anthony Viera who is an alum of the RWJF Clinician Scholars Program. I was drawn to his commitment to building a robust Department of Family Medicine & Community Health with an emphasis on community and a commitment to racial and health equity .

Where were you working prior to coming to Duke? What was your role there?

I was a Junior Attending Physician/4th Year Chief Resident at Montefiore Medical Center in the Department of Family and Social Medicine. I was involved in various aspects of graduate and undergraduate medical education, including leading Problem-Based Learning (PBL) cases for medical students, resident precepting, and curriculum programming and coordination.

What is your approach to mentorship/teaching?

A physician is a lifelong learner. Having worked in interdisciplinary teams throughout my health career, I know that every person is capable of teaching me something I do not know. My approach to teaching parallels this: I seek to foster a balance between independent research and shared knowledge and experience. As for mentorship, it got me where I am today. I think its an essential aspect of training, especially for individuals Under-presented in Medicine (UiM). I am passionate about mentorship; I have found it to be most successful when there is a combination of listening, advocacy, and action.

What is your clinical focus?

I will be caring for all patients … birth to elderly.

What are your research interests?

My research interests are in structural racism and health equity. I am also interested in reproductive justice and HIV in primary care.