The Division of General Obstetrics and Gynecology—or Generalist Division— is the oldest division in the department.
While many medical schools of the 1940s placed gynecology in a separate department or in the department of surgery, thanks to William F. Mengert, M.D. – our first chair – the disciplines of obstetrics and gynecology have always been part of the same department.
Dr. Mengert’s choice was undoubtedly influenced by his mentor at Johns Hopkins— J. Whitridge Williams, M.D. Dr. Williams, the first author of the textbook that now bears his name—Williams Obstetrics, advocated this unity.
From my own experience, both in this country and abroad, I am convinced that it is essential that the obstetrician be a competen surgical operator; and, as the number of radical operations in obstetrics is comparatively limited, the most natural method of obtaining the requisite facility is by means of gynecologic surgery. I hold that one may be a fair gynecologist with only an elementary knowledge of obstetrics, but that no one can be a competent obstetrician without being at the same time a trained gynecologist. For these reasons, I consider from the standpoint of teaching that the schools in which the two chairs are fused will possess a considerable advantage.
— J. Whitridge Williams, M.D.
JAMA 1912; 58(1):3
Like our colleagues, we are dedicated to providing accessible, quality health care to women. We are committed to educating medical students and residents—as well as our patients. And, we are devoted to identifying effective treatment options through clinical and basic research.
With clinical practices in both the UT Southwestern Health System and the Parkland Health & Hospital System, the Generalist Division reaches women across all socioeconomic strata and ethnicity–underscoring our fundamental belief that both private and public clinical service can and must be done well.