Two new healthcare practices will serve residents of the Old Mission Peninsula, and both are harking back to medical practices of yore that put people first.
Amy Couturier, owner of Up North Pediatrics, says she’ll focus on building relationships with families, being on call whenever she’s needed, and even doing house calls.
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Chris Mason, owner of Old Mission Lifestyle Medicine, says he’ll focus on ways to prevent, treat and reverse disease, helping his clients live their best life by helping them take control of their mind, body and spirit.
Up North Pediatrics
Amy and her husband, Spencer Couturier, are building a house on the Old Mission Peninsula and excited to join the community. Spencer’s dad, Rick Couturier, was the Head of School at Old Mission Peninsula School in 2019, and Amy says they’re grateful for such a strong connection to the OMP community.
Spencer is a Radiologist, and Amy is a pediatrician starting a new practice called Up North Pediatrics. “It’s a healthcare model that’s trending back into our lives from the old days,” she says, “where I spend more time with my families, and I’m on call for them whenever they need me.”
She doesn’t use an advice line, and says she does her best to save unnecessary trips to the Emergency Room. Parents can text her directly, and she can see kids as many times as needed for a flat monthly fee.
“And just like in the old days, I can also do house calls!” she notes. “I love the idea of slowing it down, working on building relationships, and helping families in the best way I can.”
A mother of two, Amy grew up in California and attended the University of California San Diego, where she completed her BS and BA in Human Biology and Religious Studies. After graduation, she joined Teach For America in Gilroy, California, teaching 7th and 8th grade math in a rural underserved area.
She completed her medical education at MSU College of Human Medicine, where she met Spencer. After completing their training, they now practice in Traverse City.
Old Mission Lifestyle Medicine
Chris Mason, a Board Certified Emergency Physician, and his wife, Nancy, live on the Old Mission Peninsula. As a traveling ER doctor, he says he grew weary of the many days and nights spent on shift in Emergency Departments across the country – saving lives and, in reality, saving people from themselves much of the time, he notes.
While he’d been planning to launch a new type of health and wellness practice serving the Old Mission Peninsula and Traverse City, he says the Covid-19 pandemic sped up the process.
“Covid-19 created a very busy and intense work travel schedule, and also made in-person non-emergency medical care almost impossible,” he said, adding that one silver lining is that tele-health and video visits became more prevalent.
As a result, Chris launched Old Mission Lifestyle Medicine, a new kind of health, wellness and longevity medical practice that offers clients the potential to live their best life.
Chris says today’s healthcare system in the United States is a failing business model, with the entire system designed to simply wait for people to get sick and then act. Worse, this type of healthcare model is also designed to keep people sick rather than help them stay healthy.
Big pharma, big healthcare systems, Medicare, Medicaid, insurance and hospitals … Chris says they’re all set up to wait and simply react when people get sick.
The answer, he says, is what’s known as “Lifestyle Medicine” – the use of evidence-based therapeutic approaches centered on these six ways to prevent, treat and even reverse disease:
- Daily exercise
- Proper nutrition
- Avoiding harmful supplements and taking healthy supplements
- Good sleep
- Neutralizing stress
- Nurturing healthy relationships
Not only does Lifestyle Medicine help people take control of their mind, body and spirit for a long, healthy, happy life, it also helps them take back medicine from the corporate world, insurance companies, and special interest groups.
Chris says he’s putting the focus back where it belongs – on you. His practice will see clients, he says, not patients.
For more information about Old Mission Lifestyle Medicine, visit the website here and Facebook page here. Chris notes that they’ll be offering additional local and in-person services and events for Old Mission Peninsula and Traverse City clients in the near future.
A NOTE FROM JANE: I started Old Mission Gazette in 2015 because I felt a calling to provide the Old Mission Peninsula community with local news. After decades of writing for newspapers and magazines like the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Family Circle and Ladies' Home Journal, I really just wanted to write about my own community where I grew up on a cherry farm and raised my own family. So I started my own newspaper. Because the Gazette is mainly reader-supported, I hope you'll consider tossing a few bucks my way if I mention your event, your business, your organization or your news item, or if you simply love reading about what's happening on the OMP. Check out the donation page here. Thank you so much for your support. -jb