Anna Afonso, MD, MPH

New Models for Treating Chronic Disease

Many of my patients come to the doctor because they want to feel well. Though I can treat an ear infection or modify insulin regimens, “wellness” is complex.

The majority of conditions I see are chronic and preventable — including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity and arthritis. Chronic disease is best addressed in our communities by the people with a deeper understanding of an individual’s personality, strengths, challenges and environment.

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Joyce Copeland, M.D. Joyce Copeland, M.D.

The American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) has a poster that displays quotes by family doctors to demonstrate the characteristics that make us proud to be a family physician.  It starts with “I treat people, not disease.” This is the philosophy we all subscribe to. It gives us the focus to look beyond the microbe, the molecule, and the metabolic disruption. We are the people specialists. This will always be true.

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Everlyn Perez, M.D. Everlyn Perez, M.D.

She was only 18 years old, but had been through trauma that most women will never understand. During a recent international elective in La Paz, Bolivia, I had the opportunity to visit Raquel in her home. At first glance, her room was not too different from any other teenager; the walls were covered by posters of boy bands and a small table was decorated with make up and jewelry.  

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Viviana Martinez-Bianchi Viviana Martinez-Bianchi, M.D., FAAFP

I walk the hallways of the United Nations’ Palais des Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, and I am overcome by a sense of awe as I think of the historic significance of the place, the many global political decisions debated in its chambers and actions that have changed the course of the lives of entire populations.

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Preyanka Makadia, DOAs the end of residency draws near, I have been reflecting on the experiences and lessons I have learned over the past three years that I will carry throughout my career as a family physician. I expected residency to be challenging; I was expecting the long hours, the steep learning curve, and added responsibility of being the primary provider for patients.

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