Tell me a little bit about Signature+ Concierge Care and how it works. What makes this form of care different than a traditional Primary Care/Physician experience?
Signature+ is a highly individualized, high-touch approach to health care that gives patients immediate and continuous access to their personal physicians. It is based out of the Flagler Health+ Village at Nocatee and offers concierge internal medicine in an unrushed, patient-centered setting.
This type of practice is substantially different than the traditional primary care model in several ways. Not only do we offer a patient-centered approach to care, it’s different because I spend as much time with my patients as their needs dictate. It’s not unusual for me to spend an hour or more with a patient – and I enjoy that opportunity to get to really know my patients and their health. And, my patients can reach me anytime. They have my personal cell phone number and I’m essentially on-call 365 days a year. Our amazing Signature+ staff help to coordinate appointments, including with other specialists. If a patient’s needs would be more fully met by me attending appointments with other sub-specialists, I can go with them in a supportive and collaborative way. I would like to think this is the highest quality medical practice in the Northeast Florida region.
My background has been primarily in concierge and executive medicine over the majority of my 21 years practicing internal medicine. I was Chair of Executive Health at Mayo Clinic before joining Flagler Health+ to help develop and run this high-quality and innovative practice. While ample time spent with patients has been replaced with a model of care marked by rushed visits, fragmented care and increasing depersonalization in most practices today, Signature+ Concierge Care in many ways harkens back to how Marcus Welby MD treated patients in the television show from the early ‘70s.
I was instilled with the understanding of how much time spent with patients and performing a thorough history and physical resulted in markedly improved medical outcomes during my training and work experience at Mayo Clinic. I have brought this experience and philosophy to Flagler Health+ to continue a tradition of superior care with a holistic approach to health. I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to continue this tradition at Signature+.
Patients have praised you for your accessibility, kindness, skill and integrity. Many physicians are talented and professional, but not all have had the kind of personal connection with their patients that you have. What is your secret?
I love what I do on several levels. As a Mayo Clinic and Cleveland Clinic trained internist, I learned how to become an expert diagnostician. Moreover, I adopted a philosophy of service, never rushing exams or discussions with patients and always understanding that patients should, and will always, come first. I view all of my patient interactions and subsequent recommendations in the prism of a holistic approach. I enjoy the rapport and friendship which develops with patients over time as well.
What do you like best about what you do?
I would say what I like most is evenly split between my enjoyment of delving into complicated cases given my internal medicine background, and also exploring the psycho-social aspects which are additional determinants of health. I hold a Master of Health Care Delivery Science from Dartmouth College, and I enjoy working on projects intended to improve the delivery of health care.
Can you tell me about your background? How did you get to where you are today? Did you always know you wanted to be a physician, or did you discover medicine at some point?
I became interested in medicine late in my college career. I initially thought I would follow in my father’s footsteps as he was a practicing chiropractor for many years. However, while I was completing my pre-medical course in college I had the good fortune of working as an ICU unit secretary at night and an autopsy assistant on weekends at our local coroner’s office. A forensic pathologist who became a mentor encouraged me to apply to medical school and so my life’s path was set. It was the very best and most rewarding decision I ever made.
I am originally from Ohio. I graduated from medical school in my hometown of Dayton, Ohio, and subsequently trained and worked at both the Cleveland Clinic and Mayo Clinic. I also completed a fellowship in Integrative Medicine with world-renown integrative medicine specialist Andrew Weill MD at the University of Arizona in Tucson. While the profession of medicine has declined in terms of patient satisfaction, poorer quality outcomes due to rushed visits with physicians who are overworked, and high physician burnout rates, Signature+ has allowed me to practice medicine as many of us remember and miss dearly. I very am fortunate in that regard.
What do you like best about making your home in the Ponte Vedra area, and what do you like to do with your free time?
I enjoy spending time with my wife and enjoy reading medical literature. I also enjoy sports cars and auto racing. Ponte Vedra is an idyllic place to live with great amenities and very nice neighbors.