Dr. Abigail Ann 'Abbey' Bartlet, M.D., was the First Lady of the United States from 1999 to 2007. She is the wife of former President Josiah Bartlet and mother of Elizabeth Westin, Ellie Faison, and Zoey Bartlet. Abbey was commonly known as a world-class physician.
Abbey met the young Jed Bartlet while he was attending Notre Dame. However, University of Notre Dame would have been a men's school at the time, thus it is likely she attended Saint Mary's College, the prestigious sister institution across the street. Jed, at the time, was studying to become a priest with the Roman Catholic Church. Despite this fact, Abbey and Jed developed a strong relationship they married in 1967, 32 years before the Bartlet Presidency. The two eventually had three daughters, Elizabeth, Ellie, and Zoey.
After Saint Mary's College, Abbey attended Harvard Medical School. After 8 years of schooling, she graduated with her M.D.. Her specialties are in internal medicine and thoracic surgery. She began practicing medicine in 1974, and was on the staff of both Boston Mercy Hospital and Columbia Presbyterian Hospital. She was Adjunct Professor of Thoracic Surgery at Harvard Medical School.
Abbey served as First Lady to her home state of New Hampshire from 1995 to 1999 when her husband became Governor. During this time, Abbey visited children hospitals and worked to raise funding for the state health-care system.
Abbey became the nation's First Lady on January 20, 1999 and served in this capacity until January 20, 2007.
In 2004, she gave testimony on Capital Hill for her strong support of the Equal Pay Act and the Equal Rights Amendment. Abbey also took action to edit UN resolutions to ensure that all forms of prostitution were made illegal, whether it be forced prostitution or not. Abbey has stated, on more than one occasion, that she believes a national health care system would highly benefit the country. During her time in office, Abbey often visited the Kennedy Center and the Lincoln Memorial. Abbey left with an approval rating of 87% with the American people.
To protect the secret of her husband's multiple sclerosis, Abbey gave the President doses of betaseron, which helped keep his MS in check. Her decision to medicate her husband, in violation of several American Medical Association rules, caused her to decide to give up her medical license for the duration of her stay in the White House.
Despite this fact, Abbey volunteered at the Johns Hopkins University Hospital.
- When First Lady: Adjunct Professor Thoracic Surgery at Harvard Medical School
- When First Lady: Volunteer, Johns Hopkins University Hospital
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