Philosophy of Care: James Telfer, M.D.

Uploaded by pamfprofiles on 28.04.2010

My goal is to create an environment in a relationship with my patients where they feel that knowledged
and feel cared for and feel comfortable. I think part of my job is to help reduce patients
apprehension about their illness or their visit and also to help increase their confidence
in their own ability to deal with the problem. Listening is very important, for several reasons.
First, for me to understand the problem and make a diagnosis but secondly to understand
the patient's experience of their problem. How this illness or problem is affecting their
life, how their life is affecting the illness, that whole interaction. And finally listening
itself can be healing often a person's perception of the problem is sometimes more a problem
than the problem or at least compounds the problem. I take a holistic approach to my
practice I think medicine and surgery have an important place but there are many more
natural modalities and ways of dealing with an illness or a problem so I'm pragmatic and
I'm interested in working with the patient to find whatever is useful, whatever may help
solve the problem. My father worked for the Public Health Service and we moved every two
or three years. I was born in San Francisco and we moved from coast to coast from Chicago
to Texas and then finally after my training at Washington University in St. Louis I moved
to North Carolina where where I had a solo practice and it was when my two children moved
to the West Coast that we realized it was time to relocate back to California.
I chose PAMF Santa Cruz because I like the people. I was in a solo practice in North
Carolina and I was looking for a community and I came here and they were friendly and
comfortable and all seemed to share a common goal to take care of patients. I think the
whole organization has as a desire to improve that care. My advice to patients as simple
and something they already know. I try to encourage them and remind them of... first,
to get enough rest and sleep because everything is so much harder when we're tired. Secondly,
to get plenty of physical activity, to exercise or some other type of movement. Even people
with physical limitations become deconditioned and need to move more. Third, to eat lightly
to try to make healthy food choices, eating plenty of whole grains and fruits and vegetables
and just being moderate with the rest of the diet. And finally, listening to your body.
When in doubt, the body will speak the truth and the more attention we pay to the body's
messages the more aware we become of what it needs.