The Team Approach
I feel so blessed to work alongside such an amazing team at The UltraWellness Center. It is so interesting to reflect on where your path leads you and how I arrived at this dream job! In 2000, I did an elective rotation at Canyon Ranch in Lenox Massachusetts. It was there that I met Dr. Mark Hyman as well as Kathie Swift and Dr. Todd Lepine. As you can imagine, this was a life changing experience. I was struggling in my medical school and residency training with the intense focus on acute care medicine, using a pill for every ill and only given a short amount of time to meet with my patients. This was not how I had envisioned being a doctor. My undergraduate and graduate training was in nutrition and exercise physiology and even though I appreciated the importance of acute care medicine, I wanted to focus on true health care and prevention as opposed to disease management.
A few years later, I was lucky to get a job at Canyon Ranch and experience a different way of providing health care. I worked alongside Dr. Hyman and went to my first training in Functional Medicine with Dr. Lepine. I was blown away and remember going up to Dr. David Jones, one of the founders of Functional Medicine, in tears, knowing that I had finally found my home. Functional Medicine provided me with the tools to combine my nutrition background with my medical school training to provide health care in an exciting way. In Functional Medicine, we look for the underlying root cause whenever possible and treat each person as an individual. We harness the natural healing power that the body already has and using the latest science work to rebalance the body.
Dr. Hyman started The UltraWellness Center in 2004 and brought me to work alongside him in 2007. What an amazing road this has been. While working with Dr. Hyman, there is always a new opportunity and experience. We have built The UltraWellness Center into one of the premier Functional Medicine clinics in the world. He has taught me all of what he has learned while treating patients throughout the years as well as opened up many doors. I am excited to be working as an educator with the Institute for Functional Medicine where I have helped develop the Functional Nutrition curriculum and teach Functional Medicine to other health care providers throughout the world.
A few years after I joined the UWC, we were excited to have Dr. Lepine join us. Dr. Lepine has been a pioneer in Functional Medicine and teaches other clinicians the latest research in the field. We also have Dr. George Papanicolaou as well as amazing nutritionists, PAs, nurses, health coaches, and support staff that make the patient experience amazing.
We know that team-based healthcare is the way of the future. We know that when people work with different providers within the same team, they can have better outcomes. Our nurses and nutritionists help make our treatment plans more practical or doable for the patient. In addition, many times having another set of ears helps reveal a piece of our patient’s puzzle that makes all of the difference in their healing journey.
One of my favorite aspects of working at The UltraWellness Center, is our clinical rounds. This is a 1 ½ hour session that we hold every week. The whole clinical team gathers together in our conference room to discuss our patients, the latest testing options, how to manipulate a person’s diet for their optimal health, and how best to support a particular patient on their healing journey. This 1 ½ hours is a great time to learn from one another and share our experiences. So, when I fill out my gratitude journal, I often have entries such as, “meeting Dr. Mark Hyman,” ”Joining The UltraWellness Center,” and “Finding my home in Functional Medicine.” By taking a team approach, we are able to best help our patients through years of collective experience and research, truly getting to the root cause of disease for long-term, vibrant health.