By Karla Sluis, Sarada Leavenworth, Pam Wise-Romero, Shelly Burke & Bern Heath
June 26, 2016
Published in Four Corners Healthy Living, a newsprint magazine inserted in The Durango Herald on June 26, 2016, and the Cortez Journal and Pine River Times on June 28, 2016.

The mind and body are not separate, but one integrated system that is uniquely you. While talking about the mind and body as one makes obvious sense, healthcare has not traditionally connected the two.

La Plata Integrated Healthcare and Cortez Integrated Healthcare are leading the charge in bringing all aspects of your healthcare together. These clinics use technology, health screenings and an integrated team to provide care differently. It’s healthcare for the whole person.

As a patient, you have a team that takes an active role in your health with you. This approach connects the emotional and physical to help you get well and stay well. Both clinics provide comprehensive care, including: wellness exams, sick visits, chronic disease management, behavioral health support and treatment, and oral health screening and referrals. Your care team partners with you to improve your health and your family’s health, too.

How does this work in an actual doctor’s visit? Here’s an example: Jan (not her real name) made an appointment at Cortez Integrated Healthcare because of knee pain. During the appointment, Jan noted that she felt tired and hungry all the time, had gained 15 pounds in the last year and was experiencing some vision blurring and a dry mouth. After listening to her symptoms and reviewing her screenings, her provider team found that she had Type 2 diabetes accompanied by moderate depression. In the discussion that followed, Jan said that she eats junk food when she feels depressed, which had been with increasing frequency. Through working with her care team, Jan learned about Type 2 diabetes. In follow-up visits, she and her team combined their skills and expertise to help her manage her health more effectively. Jan’s physical symptoms of the diabetes diminished, she lost a few pounds, her knee pain was relieved, her mood lifted and she felt empowered to take charge of her health and her life.

Whole person care is better healthcare for anyone, at any age or for any health condition. Whether your symptoms are mild, moderate, severe or you are just trying to maintain good health, there are benefits across your lifespan:

You have a team of healthcare providers. Your diverse care team can expand or change to ensure you receive the right care, at the right time, with the right provider.

You have an active role. The team approach gives you more control over your own health and well-being, both physically and emotionally. You work together on your health.

One-stop shopping. Getting to multiple appointments at different locations can be challenging. The comprehensive healthcare provided at these clinics makes care easier.

Affordable care options and support. The clinics accept private insurance, Medicaid, Medicare and offer a sliding-fee scale for those who qualify. Support is available for enrollment in Medicaid or insurance.

Unlike the traditional model of healthcare with a trail of disconnected providers, the essence of whole person care is collaboration. This is a truly fresh approach that can make a difference in your health.

Axis Health System is a trailblazer for innovation in primary healthcare delivery in Colorado, providing quality care across the lifespan for 55 years in Montezuma, Dolores, La Plata, San Juan and Archuleta counties.