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CDR Patricia Mckay, USN, MD

A graduate of the Uniformed Services University, School of Medicine, and the National Naval Medical Center Orthopaedic residency, Dr. Patricia L. McKay, completed a Hand Surgery fellowship at the Mayo Clinic in 2000. Caring for wounded warriors has defined Dr. McKay’s career. “It is something I feel privileged to do,” she says. Dr. McKay has practiced primarily at National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., and Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C. In addition, she was deployed for three months to the Northern Arabian Gulf in 2003 with USNS Comfort, a hospital ship that serves as a trauma center. Dr. McKay, who has three daughters, refers to patients as part of her military family. “I am inspired by their dedication, humbled by their perseverance, and privileged to be involved in their care.”

Learning to Walk

24 x 18 x .75 in.

Acrylic on Canvas

This painting depicts “a moment of struggle and progress” on the USNS Comfort in 2003, Dr. McKay says. A Navy physical therapist supports a teenage Iraqi girl, who lost her leg in the war, as she learns to walk with crutches. “This moment has stayed with me, one young woman reaching out to another whose life is so different and whose future is so uncertain,” she says.