Episode 21: Don’t Wallow in Gloominess, with Karen E. Arscott, D.O., M.Sc.



Karen Arscott graduated from The Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine and is Board Certified in Neuromuscular Medicine. Dr. Arscott had a private practice in Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania. From February 2004 through September 2012, she held the position of Program Director for the Physician Assistant Program at Marywood University. Since 2008 she has been a leader with the Northeast/Central Pennsylvania Interprofessional Education Coalition. Serving as Scranton Regional director and since 2014 as Chair of the coalition. In October 2012 Dr. Arscott was appointed to a full-time position as Associate Professor in Medicine at The Commonwealth Medical College (TCMC).

She has presented nationally and internationally on interprofessional education in addition to scholarly publications in medical education. In addition to her position at TCMC Dr. Arscott taught the Addiction and the Family segment for the Student Assistance Program in Lackawanna and Wayne counties for 5 years. From 2005 until 2010 she organized and ran Parent Forums in Abington Heights to help families touched by addiction. She is a delegate to the Pennsylvania Osteopathic Medical Association and is a Pennsylvania delegate to the American Osteopathic Association House of Delegates.

Dr. Arscott has been named a Patient Representative on the FDA Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee; she has spoken on behalf of cancer patients to The Engelberg Center for Health Care Reform at The Brookings Institute in Washington, D.C., as well as at the Radiologic Society of North America conference. Dr. Arscott is a member of the Integration Panel for the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program Lung Cancer Research Program. She was a member of the Meals on Wheels of NEPA Board of Directors (6 years – serving as Chair, Vice-Chair, and Secretary), is co-chair of the PA Lung a division of Lung Cancer Alliance, was added to the Medical and Professional Board of Lung Cancer Alliance, was named Northeast Woman in June 2008, and received the Marywood Alumni Award for Excellence in Health and Human Services in June 2011.

In 2015 the students at TCMC nominated and voted her the recipient of the Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Faculty Award and she was inducted into the The Arnold P. Gold Foundation. She honored with the TCMC S.T.A.R. award in June 2016. Dr. Arscott resides in Waverly with her husband, James T. Arscott, D.O. and granddaughter Sophia.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • How Karen knew she wanted to practice medicine from a very early age
  • Why she became a doctor when most women entering the medical field became nurses
  • What the environment was like for Karen in medical school
  • How Karen met her husband (also a doctor) who she married before medical school
  • How she and her husband juggled 110 combined hours of work a week while having two kids
  • Karen’s experience with lung cancer as a non-smoker
  • The research that needs to but isn’t because of an inaccurate stigma about lung cancer
  • Why she didn’t realize she was poor growing up
  • How Karen’s parents instilled her work-hard mentality in her growing up
  • Her early job as a waitress to pay for her education and the valuable lifelong lessons she learned in that job
  • Why wanting to give her family what they want (not need) has a been a financial challenge
  • Why Karen and her husband put their kids through private school
  • Why appearing wealthy makes Karen uncomfortable

Ways to contact Karen:


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