The root of Health
Putting The Patient First
This issue IHP is pleased to share the story of an integrative clinic in the Oakville community. Dr. Jodie Peacock, ND, has been managing her clinic, The Root of Health, for over 5 years. She initially wanted to open her own clinic after being exposed to a number of clinics through her work with NFH (Dr. Peacock is a Medical Consultant and Territory Manager). Her vision was to create a space where likeminded practitioners could work together, while still maintaining their own independent practices. She wanted to provide many healthcare alternatives in one physical location, and that way patients could reasonably obtain all services in one place with a strong continuity of care. Dr. Peacock believes inter-referrals among different practitioners is what really allows for the best patient experience. Within her clinic model practitioners pay rent, but it’s not intended to be a financial burden. For example, a practitioner may start working one day a week and have low overhead, and then scale up as time goes on. Part of the goal is to ensure the clinic team feels supported and works in interest of the clinic as a whole. When Dr. Peacock first opened her doors, it was just her and Sarah Ritchie, BA, B.Ed, RMT, RAc, Reiki Master. Today she works with a full team of diverse practitioners and collectively they see upwards of 100 patient visits per week.
The clinic is approximately 1400 square feet and consists of six treatment rooms, a common kitchen area with laundry and labs, and a common waiting area. Three of the treatment rooms are larger and accommodate for more treatment space and desk space. The other rooms are used for bodywork and counseling work. In general, the services offered at the clinic include naturopathic medicine, osteopathy, massage, acupuncture, reiki, craniosacral therapy, homeopathy, nutritionist services, ayurvedic services, and reflexology. The practitioners at the clinic have a variety of specialties. Dr. Peacock’s practice is a general family practice, with a focus in fertility and pain management. She uses acupuncture a significant amount, as well as botanicals or nutrients depending on specific patient deficiencies. Sarah Ritchie is very intuitive with her treatments. She’s a unique practitioner because of her focus in eastern medical modalities including TCM, Shiatsu and energy work and she gets great results with her patients. Dr. Ann Nakajima, ND, has a larger focus on homeopathy, UNDA drainage, Bowen therapy, and TCM. She focuses on women’s and children’s health. Mark Aquino, Osteopathic Manual Practitioner, uses manual osteopathic techniques and focuses on infants, children and adults and deals with conditions like colic, digestive concerns, and various pain issues. Tanya Hamlet RMT has a focus on treating lymphatic conditions and pregnancy. Carol Anne Rayson DCHM has a practice founded on Classical Hahnemannian Homeopathy for all Life Stages, using LM potencies: she is also proficient in Inspiring Homeopathy, CEASE therapy & detoxification with Isopathic Remedies. Ismat Nathani Doctorate in Natural Medicine, has over 20 years of practice in Natural medicine specializing ayurveda & yoga care for neurology and endocrinology imbalances. Linda Taylor, DCHM (Hons.) practises Classical Homeopathy and has a special interest in aging, children and women’s issues. Dr. Laura Crawford ND has a clinical focus on mood disorders and the endocrine system.
The clinic’s marketing consists of their website, a monthly newsletter, and they also attend numerous external events or wellness fairs within the Oakville and Burlington areas. The rest is word of mouth or referrals from other practitioners. The clinic has relationships and refers to a pelvic health physiotherapist, a chiropractic clinic that does a lot of rehabilitation work, physiotherapists, and even a plastic surgeon for select dermatological procedures. Most of the time, prospective patients contact the clinic looking for a particular service. If they are calling for a specific complaint like back pain, they could potentially see any of the practitioners. In these situations, reception will discuss the options with them and direct them accordingly.
Over time and as is inevitable with any clinic, practitioners have left for various reasons. One of the things that makes The Root of Health unique is that many of the practitioners that have left have opened their own clinics. Dr. Peacock has fostered good relationships with all the practitioners such that inter-referrals continue to occur, despite changing circumstances. None of the practitioners at the clinic have any ego with regards to their individual practices. The clinic is happy to accommodate different circumstances because at the end of the day they all believe it’s about the quality of the patient care that is provided. The Root of Health also sometimes allows practitioners to build their practices by providing free space to a practitioner while they are in training in the process of accumulating a specific amount of client hours (currently Maria Fiordialisi is offering complimentary treatment to patients while finishing up specialized training in reflexology). One of the challenges Dr. Peacock has faced is replacing practitioners who have built successful practices, but for some reason need to move on. It becomes challenging because all of the team members are so integrated. She also says that managing 10 people in the same space also brings its own challenges.
The clinic has an on-site dispensary and they carry a variety of high-quality brands including NFH, Douglas Labs, Thorne, Seroyal, Biomed, Heel, Pascoe, and Guna. They also carry teas from Clef-des-Champ. The main lab services are provided by Rocky Mountain Analytical, Doctor’s Data, Great Plains Lab, and Metametrix. Due to the practitioners available, the clinic also carries an impressive homeopathic dispensary that consists of over 200 individual remedies (largely from Boiron). They will also custom order from Helios if required.
This year The Root of Health got nominated for the 2013 Oakville business award in the professional service provider’s category. Dr. Peacock shares some advice to newer practitioners. She suggests that when they start their practice, they should pick somewhere they want to stay and put a lot of effort into it. From her vast experience with NFH and personally with her clinic, she has seen that the harder you work, the more success you will have. When Dr. Peacock was asked if she has any messages for her patients, she said, “We want you to have an excellent experience. We’re happy to communicate with each other at the clinic to serve you, and we will communicate externally on your behalf as well. We’re happy to work with your medical doctor. Patient care is our highest priority!” Some of Dr. Peacock’s future plans are to expand on IV therapy services offered at the clinic as well as offering more services that would provide natural alternatives to botox and surgeries for cosmetic purposes. IHP would like to thank Dr. Peacock for sharing her inspiring story with us.