My name is Dr. Leslie Latterman and I am the founder of Designs by Dr. Leslie. I am a Board Certified Internist and a practicing Hospitalist.
One morning, after coming home from an especially difficult shift, I complained to my husband about my awful lab coat. It was dingy, heavy, and fit me like a tent. In exasperation, I yelled at my husband, “and what are these stupid holes on the sides for?”
His response was, “That’s to allow MEN to reach into their trouser pockets!”
That’s when it hit me. Women physicians have been forced to wear a lab coat designed for a man. Even worse, it’s the same basic lab coat that doctors have worn for over 100 years! Doctors didn’t have pagers or cell phones back then, and they certainly didn’t have very many women physicians. So why are we still wearing it? In that moment, I decided to make something better.
Did you know that over half of medical school grads are now women? There was once a time when women physicians felt they had to look and act like a man to be respected. Those days are over! Today, we command respect as both a physician and a woman.
I began designing my signature lab coat by meeting with a group of my Residents, all women, to discuss what a modern woman’s lab coat should be like. Here is what we came up with:
- The lab coat should be tailored to fit a woman’s shape. We want to look fashionable.
- The fabric should be soft and light, and it should be wrinkle- and stain-resistant.
- Let’s replace those stupid holes on the sides with large, zippered pockets where we can keep personal items.
- The lab coat should be designed to look great with the sleeves rolled up to minimize patient contact.
- The lab coat should help us be more efficient. If there is a special place for a pen, cell phone, pager, and medical instruments, we won’t have to fumble through pockets to find them.
- You can’t carry a purse around the hospital, so a small fabric wallet big enough to hold some cash and a credit card would be a life saver.
- Finally, we wanted a way to attach a stethoscope to the coat so it wouldn’t fall on the dirty floor every time we took the coat off.
It has taken almost two years to develop our revolutionary lab coat. I wear the prototype every day, and it is extraordinary! It feels great, looks fantastic, and performs like no other lab coat. When I walk through the hospital, people stop me to see it because it is so unique.
It’s not easy to be a woman and a doctor, or to juggle life, work, and family in our field. You’ve earned your white coat and you should wear it proudly. I hope you will agree that our Dr. Leslie lab coat gives you the professional style and performance that you deserve!You’re extraordinary! Shouldn’t your lab coat be?