A Burned-out M.D. turns to her community she asked what they wanted in a health-care clinic, then built it — and was transformed. Here’s what the future of medicine could look like.
When I was little I used to press my face against the bathroom mirror, stare into my eyes, and ask myself, “Why am I here?” I’d repeat those words over and over again until my eyes got so wide that I felt as if I could jump inside them.
When I got older I sought professional help. My cadre of counselors included astrologers, palm and Tarot card readers, and a pet psychic who facilitated communication with my dead dog. Obsessed, I tried soul-seeking Southern gospel church services, Native American sweat-lodge ceremonies, tribal African grief rituals, and even four years of medical school.
Now I am a family physician, the expert with all the answers. What an illusion! Life is so mysterious and science often does not soothe me. I’m never certain I have the answers my patients truly seek. Still, I have managed to create a new type of medical practice where I can hold their hands and walk the path of an op …