For many patients, attaining personal healthcare goals can be tricky. The challenges of navigating complex healthcare systems can be major obstacles to care. At Mountain Park Health Center, our integrated healthcare approach helps patients achieve their goals with better outcomes.
Integrated healthcare is an approach that involves a high degree of communication and collaboration among health professionals. Our care teams include physicians, dietitians, psychologists and others whose sole focus is caring four our patients.
This unique approach helps establish a detailed and achievable treatment plan to address the biological, psychological and social needs of the patient. As part of a treatment plan, we work with patients to set self-management goals that help in the process of their treatment. One of Mountain Park’s patients, Lucy Tanori, is an example of how our integrated healthcare approach and self-management goals help patients achieve a healthier life.
Meet Lucy: Embarking on a Weight Loss Journey with Our Help
At one point in her life, Lucy Tanori was nearing 400 pounds. Lucy has always known that her weight was been bad for her health, but taking the steps to a healthier lifestyle isn’t easy. It often requires the right mindset and support from people around us.
In 2009, Lucy ended up in the hospital and was in an induced coma due to her chronic heart failure. After being released several weeks later, she had to use a wheelchair and occasionally a walker. A few years later Lucy made the commitment to change her life. Lucy, with the help of our integrated healthcare team, took charge to free herself from the downward spiral of weight gain and sedentary habits. From the moment Lucy met Dr. Manwaring, they clicked.
“I try to assess the readiness and willingness of each patient to make lifestyle changes, and with Lucy, she was willing to engage in the discussion and move at her pace,” Dr. Manwaring told us. “She came ready to change.”
“I knew that I had to lose more than a little weight,” Lucy remembers. “Dr. Manwaring was concerned about my weight.”
To help, Dr. Manwaring took advantage of Mountain Park’s integrated healthcare approach. “She would see a dietitian, a behavioral health specialist, and myself,” he said. “It was not just a doctor saying take this medication, try to do better, and I will see you in three months. We have a whole team that encourages the patient and helps to see some of the barriers that they have to their health and then address them.”
Dr. Manwaring also pointed out how creating self-management goals was vital to Lucy’s improvement.
“This is when the patient takes time to reflect on what they want to see for their health, and then we give them resources to help them achieve those goals.”
The Results of Lucy’s Journey and Our Approach to Healthcare
“In a little over a year I lost more than 80 pounds,” Lucy tells us, gleaming with pride. “I have a big family and two new grandbabies. I wanted to be there for them. Having Dr. Manwaring as a doctor makes it easier. He is such a nice guy. He talks to me and finds out about the whole me. He listens and asks what I do on a daily basis. In my eyes I’m not just his patient, I’m his friend.”
Our integrated health care model allowed Lucy to see multiple providers in one facility. In addition to Dr. Manwaring, Lucy was able to see a Registered Dietitian. “I see Alexa Diaz. At each visit we go over my eating and workout plan and we talk about what I can substitute out of my diet. I always replace one bad thing with a good thing.”
Lucy is now eating better and going to the gym three days a week. She even started doing water aerobics. “When it’s cooler I like taking walks outside and climbing the stairs at my apartment complex,” she told us. “Before my weight loss journey I wasn’t even able to walk.”
Since Lucy started losing weight she is able to spend more time with her grandchildren. She joins them in the pool and they go on long walks together. Perhaps the most remarkable part of Lucy’s weight loss is how much her diabetes has improved.
“Every morning my glucose numbers used to be sky high and now they’ve been cut down more than half,” she told us. “I’ve already been taken off one medicine and look forward to getting off another soon.”
Although she has lost more than 80 pounds, Lucy is still working to reach her fitness and weight goals.
“I have a long way to go but I’m not giving up,” she said. “With the help I’m receiving and baby steps, I know that I will able to lose more weight and become healthier.”
Our Care Teams are always here to help you set and reach any goal you want. “I’m very proud of the progress, consistency and commitment Lucy has made toward her goals and improving her chronic disease management,” Dr. Manwaring said.
Last year we helped our patients set over 52,000 self-management goals. While integrated healthcare clearly benefits individual patients, it also translates to significant improvements to our health care system as a whole. According to the American Psychological Association, an integrated approach increases overall access to healthcare services, improves quality of care, and lowers overall health costs on the national level. One thing is for certain at Mountain Park Health Center: we are working every day to help patients achieve their health goals, and we are proud to be a part of the movement to improve healthcare nationwide.
To learn more about our providers, our patients, and the programs we offer, read more of our stories here.