Committed to Women’s Health
Committed to Women’s Health
It’s a relatively common perception that women’s health is all about reproductive needs and conditions that are more common among women. However, as a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP-C) who focuses on women’s health, the care I provide is all-encompassing.
Of course, family planning, birth control and cancer screenings are a large part of what I discuss with patients, but it’s also essential that we address mental health and heart health. According to the CDC, the top three leading causes of death in women of all races, origins and ages are heart disease (1), cancer (2), and stroke (3).
This means that we need to be more proactive about taking measures to educate our patients about these health risks and engage in patient-specific preventative actions.* This includes lifestyle issues (like nutrition, exercise, tobacco use and stress management) and proper screening to identify warning signs for serious health issues such as:
- Vaccines to prevent certain cancers (Gardasil which reduces the risk of HPV infection, which can lead to cervical, oral, anal and other cancers).
- Screening tools such as breast self-exams (BSEs) and mammograms (including 3D options).
- Routine pelvic exams and pap smears. Discuss the appropriate frequency for your age, health and family history.
- Colonoscopies (starting at age 45 for most individuals at average risk for colon cancer) or a DNA/blood test of a fecal sample (such as Cologuard®).
- Increased commitment to supporting mental health. Addressing depression, anxiety or other mental health concerns before they become debilitating can contribute to improved overall health.
We don’t want to focus on just avoiding and treating diseases that lead to death. We also want to support women in a way that helps them enjoy a higher quality of life — throughout the many ages and stages we experience over the years.
The Solvera Health Difference
Because of the way our group is structured, we’re able to take a comprehensive approach to our patients’ healthcare. I’m located in Galesburg, where I’m fortunate to share an office with an experienced family medicine physician and urologist — I also have access to a gynecologist in Peoria, who is just a phone call away.
We want you to be comfortable with all aspects of your care. For example, if Dr. Julio Santiago is your primary care provider, but you’re more comfortable with a woman performing your annual well woman visit, we make that happen for you. Or if you normally see a male provider and you have a concern that you’d rather discuss with another woman, that’s not a problem. I would be more than happy to care for you, and he would be more than happy to introduce us. We are a team and we’re committed to accommodating your needs and preferences.
In addition to delivering a comfortable medical experience, we also want to make your care as convenient as possible. I have many resources at my fingertips that allow me to efficiently consult with other medical professionals so we can develop the best plan of care for your needs. Eventually, we will have our own pharmacy in Galesburg too. I’ll be able to prescribe birth control for a patient and she’ll be able to walk across the hall and pick it up.
All these factors come together to demonstrate how we bring hospitality to healthcare!
* This article is designed to introduce you to the Solvera Health team, our approach to patient health care and general guidelines for screening. It is NOT intended as medical advice — you should always discuss your specific medical status, risks and needs directly with your healthcare provider.