My desire to help others in the pursuit of health and happiness as well as the personal satisfaction that comes from learning and sharing knowledge about the body has led me to practice medicine. My fascination with the complexity and challenges of the human body inspire me to continually study and apply myself to medicine. Bridging the worlds of Chinese Medicine, with its emphasis on functional systems biology, and Western biomedicine, with its detailed biochemical focus, provides me a worthy challenge and fulfilling philosophical and clinical experience.
I began my journey into medicine in high school, apprenticing my high school's athletic trainer and performing palliative care and preventive treatment on the student athletes of Bellarmine College Preparatory. Through treating athletes, absorbing sports medical knowledge from my mentor, and in taking an elective anatomy course my senior year, I began to appreciate the profound intelligence of the body.
I eventually discovered acupuncture and the Chinese medical tradition in college when I sought treatment with student acupuncturists who were practicing at my university student health clinic, at UCLA. I had suffered from chronic sinus infections and amidst a particularly bad infection, I thought I would try acupuncture to alleviate my headache, sinus congestion, and general discomfort, which the antibiotics were not directly treating.
I was immediately amazed and curious as the acupuncture provided relief from my symptoms and helped me feel more comfortable. I began reading and studying on my own, learning to make changes in my diet and lifestyle to help prevent the recurring infections and other health issues I was experiencing. I continued to receive acupuncture, to better understand how it worked, how it could be utilized to treat and prevent disease, and to better know my own body. I soon became enamored with the more holistic, subtle, systems-oriented, and tradition-rich ways in which Chinese medicine viewed medicine and the human body. I liked the way Eastern and Western medicines provided unique and complimentary approaches to medicine.
Eventually, I found myself wanting to pursue medicine as a career and felt that becoming a licensed acupuncturist was the most appropriate licensing and specialty for me. I began my studies at AIMC in Berkeley for two years, then finished my master's degree at Five Branches University in Santa Cruz, where Jessica and I first met.
As a board certified acupuncturist and doctor of acupuncture and Chinese medicine, I primarily help my patients using acupuncture, electro-acupuncture, cupping, medical massage, and Chinese herbal medicine/supplementation. I also provide guidance and education based on my never-ending research. I am driven by a passion to understand and know how the body works, and as such, I regularly review a broad range of medical research, digging for new information, deeper understandings of medicine, and out of my love of helping others.
As a healthcare professional, I do my best to integrate the specialized tools of acupuncture and herbal medicine with Western medical science and sports medicine to provide my patients with workable and effective treatment plans. Our approach aims to provide our patients with integrated support to improve the outcomes of their primary treatment plans, or to provide treatment for patients who otherwise have been unsuccessfully treated by other means.
The global pandemic has given me the opportunity to appreciate the value and dynamism of acupuncture and Chinese medicine. It has also shown me its limitations, especially when working in a private, isolated clinical setting. Over the past two years, I have spent more of my time reading and thinking about public health, integrative healthcare, and the directions healthcare might go that would better serve our communities here in the United States. I am deeply committed to seeing acupuncture fully utilized, at the highest levels in our healthcare systems, but also seeing it become a part of the core tool-set in American preventive and chronic care.
I am currently seeking new opportunities in the hopes of fulfilling these dreams of helping define and refine all that acupuncture has to offer within the larger patient-centered healthcare systems. I want to work with a team of diversely knowledgeable and skilled professionals that are collaborating to fully support our patients as a model for optimal healthcare, that can one day be the standard of care. I believe an integrative hospital setting or large clinical setting is the ideal place for me to contribute to these goals. I believe I would bring not only my enthusiasm for collaborative, caring work, but also my rich scientific understanding of the neuroscience research, and my unique cultural perspectives as a Native American with rich and complex American ancestry. I would love to work with a medical team as an exceptional doctor of acupuncture and Chinese medicine.
My hope is that the medical treatment we provide guides our patients towards living healthier, happier, and more consciously embodied lives.
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