CORPORATISED medical centres put pressure on doctors to see as many patients as possible, leaving no time for a comprehensive assessment, East Fremantle naturopath Deborah Taylor says.
“The 10-minute, one-problem Medicare model is inadequate. Even my GP colleagues hate working in it, and are seeing up to 35 patients a day.
“I had a patient this week complain that her doctor didn’t even bother to examine her when she presented with chronic respiratory symptoms.”
Short appointments can lead to over-prescribing and under-evaluating the needs of patients, who need more thorough care and sometimes lifestyle assessment, Ms Taylor says.
“Medical teaching in universities no longer focusses on physiology but rather pharmacology.”
Ms Taylor, and husband Geoff Round, set up Natmed in 1999 with a view to a more holistic approach to health care
There’s a team of five naturopaths, a GP, nurse practitioner, acupuncturist, chiropractor, counsellor, nutritionist and podiatrist.
Dr Brian Walker and Deborah Taylor work together to support patients suffering with chronic illness such as fibromyalgia or Lyme disease.
“Dr Walker also prescribes cannabinoids for patients in pain,” Ms Taylor says.
Most patients will see nurse practitioner Lu Ferguson and one of the naturopaths, who have different areas of speciality.
All patients have thorough in-house tests as well as Medicare pathology screens.
“This is a very different model to most clinics…It ensures a thorough and affordable assessment prior to taking a bunch of expensive supplements, ensures patients are evaluated thoroughly, and facilitates a consultative approach where the patient is involved in the decision making about treatment,” Ms Taylor says.
Natmed is offering free health checks at the George Street festival tomorrow (Sunday December 1).
For more information contact the clinic at natmed.com.au or call 9339 1999.