Learning, in my own back yard

When I was shadowing at an organization recently, a patient asked, “Are there many patients from South America in your community (in Washington State)?” I responded, that, no, I didn’t think so. His response was, “Have you looked?”

One of my goals during my experience is to look, all around me. This has not been an opportunity that I have had previously, as much of my work was directed toward the membership of our organization. To start this journey, I joined the District of Columbia Primary Care Association, which is “a nonprofit health care reform organization founded in 1998 to improve the health of DC’s vulnerable residents by ensuring that they receive high quality primary health care — regardless of their ability to pay.”

It’s interesting for me to realize as a proponent of primary care in my community, that I didn’t know if a similar organization exists in Seattle (I am told it does). In the meantime, though, I am really looking forward to learning more about the community that DCPCA serves. DCPCA is engaging in a program to implement electronic health records in community health centers, and managing Medical Homes DC.

Ted Eytan, MD