Mercer Business Magazine
Scott Evan Eder, MD had been practicing medicine for about 10 years before deciding to return to school for a Masters in Administrative Medicine/Preventative Health. He had already founded what became Mercer County’s largest OB-GYN practice and established the University Medical Center at Princeton’s first midwifery practice. But something kept nagging him. He thought that maybe there were things he could do better.
“I was running into several administrative issues and I wanted to perfect my skills as an administrator,” Dr. Eder says. “I thought that maybe I could get training to avert those problems. Later, I realized I wasn’t doing anything wrong. I was facing common problems that physicians encounter but haven’t been trained in.”
Since graduating from the program, Dr. Eder has broadened his horizons by taking a more “universal” approach to tackling problems and helping others who also need training. He does this by going to the African countries of Niger and Rwanda to provide medical care to women and teaching local medical students about obstetrical and surgical techniques. He also volunteers to lecture to medical students and doctors in Vietnam. He serves on the Board of Directors of the International Organization for Women and Development (IOWD).
Dr. Eder will be returning with IOWD to Rwanda later this month. Like all the organization’s volunteers he receives no compensation for his work and covers his own travel and lodging expenses.
As a tireless advocate for women’s health, Dr. Eder attempts to stay on top of the latest in medicine. He was the first physician in Mercer County to perform a hysterectomy (removal of the uterus) using the daVinci robot – a system that allows complex surgical procedures to be performed though very small incisions. The daVinci system helps cuts down hospital stays, reduces blood loss, and decreases infection rates.
After seeing how his contemporaries in other parts of the world are lower on resources and training, however, Dr. Eder has pursued funding and surgical equipment for those folks. His dogged pursuit of donors has resulted in bringing laparoscopic surgical equipment to Rwanda and Niger. Once the equipment was placed, Dr. Eder introduced the laparoscopy technique to Niger and taught it to medical students, residents, and other doctors.
“When Scott sets his mind to getting a donation he gets it,” says Barbara Margolies, Founder and Executive director of IOWD. “He’s just a wonderful guy. He’s very patient, loves to teach and loves what he’s doing. He really feels that what he’s doing is worthwhile… and it is.”
Back in greater Mercer County, Dr. Eder is dedicated to his patients and to women’s healthcare research. His practice, known as The Center for Women’s Health & Wellness, specializes in both treatment and clinical research, and has offices in Plainsboro and Lawrenceville. His practice embraces the expertise he has developed since 1994, when he began conducting clinical studies with pharmaceutical and medical device companies.
He has collaborated with such companies as Church & Dwight, Covance, and Johnson & Johnson on research that has resulted in being able to offer cutting-edge therapies to area patients. His research includes helping to develop several medications to advance women’s health.
Dr. Eder’s research naturally fits with his passion for patient rights. He is a past president of the Mercer County Medical Society (MCMS), and has helped the organization interact with lawmakers and insurance companies. MCMS has been instrumental in educating elected officials on reasons to pass legislation prohibiting the discharge of women from hospitals too quickly after giving birth, and on laws covering the costs of mammograms.
Linda McGhee, recently retired Executive Director of MCMS says Dr. Eder is loyal and practices what he preaches.
“His priorities are family, activism and philanthropy,” McGhee says. “He does not strive to be recognized for monetary reasons. He rolls up his sleeves. He’s truly an advocate for medicine and especially the prevention of abuse to women. I know I could call him at any hour of the night.”
For his tireless advocacy, Dr. Eder was a nominee for the 2008 Distinguished Physician Humanitarian Award given by Princeton Health Care System.
Dr. Eder’s wife, Lauren, is a professor and a department chairperson at Rider University. Daughter, Brooke, is graduating from Quinnipiac University in May and son, Marc, is a junior at Brandeis University.
Dr. Eder enjoys his spare time traveling with family. One trip he recalls fondly is a journey to Bolivia during which his family crossed Lake Titicaca. It was during a snowstorm… in August, by the way. Just another example of Dr. Eder battling the elements in an unbalanced world.
~ Author: Howard Seidman