We had a staff meeting to discuss what makes our clinic unique. We have people from all over asking us this question, What is it that you do?
While we need to be careful about putting the emphasis on methodology I’ve outlined five areas where our clinic has a unique contribution.
- We practice comprehensive patient care. Now we don’t do full spectrum medicine in the same way other family medicine doctors who practice both oupatient and inpatient medicine, emergency room and OB care. But we do have 30 minute visits where we address a wide range of issues such as acute problems, chronic problems, preventive measures and spiritual issues. All primary care clinics address acute and chronic problems. Fewer clinics address preventive measures. And far fewer deal with spiritual issues.
- We help the church do health ministries in the community. Our churches seek relevant and tangible ways to impact our communities. This has been done with 4-8 week health programs, bi-monthly Dinner with the Doctor programs and others. Last summer we partnered with Your Best Pathway to Health and treated 3,111 patients in 2 days pouring $8,000,000 of free health care into the city of Spokane. Christian physicians and providers bolster both credibility and safety for these type of health ministry programs. Imagine the impact your church would have if you partnered with them?
- We provide education. We provide educational opportunities to anyone interested in learning about the mission and vision of the clinic. We’ve taught high school students, college students, nurse practitioner students, medical students, residents and even seasoned physicians.
- We do experimentation in the community. We are constantly looking for ways to uniquely partner with the church and reach our community. Two summers ago the clinic partnered with 6 health coaches from the church. These health coaches worked in patient homes daily to bring about lifestyle change and connect with them spiritually over 7 weeks. The stories of changed lives were incredible
- We engage church members by connecting them with the needs in the community. As Christian physicians and providers, we can keep the church from being isolated and irrelevant. We do this by connecting patients with the resources of the church. I’ve had patients ask me, “Aren’t you a part of that church interested in health. Can you send me someone who can help me cook?” Another Christian patient of mine admitted how much she feared the events after death. She was interested in receiving Bible studies on this topic.
As a Christian physician or provider in your area, what unique contribution can you offer your community? Leave me a comment.