Clinics Physicians Tapped as Health Champions
Two Marin Community Clinics’ physicians, Tracey Hessel, MD and Elizabeth Shaw, MD, have been named to a prestigious fellowship with the State Department of Public Health and the University of California (San Francisco).
Harnessing the passion of health care providers
For the next two years, they are participating in a statewide Champion Provider Fellowship Program that was developed to harness the passion of health care providers to improve community health beyond the clinic setting.
The primary focus: to address the obesity epidemic, which is leading to devastating and costly diseases such as diabetes, stroke and heart disease – conditions that disproportionately affect low income, underserved communities.
Dr. Hessel and Dr. Shaw are receiving training and education on a wide variety of health subjects, including health promotion, food insecurity, healthy retail, and communications. Their work will also include collaboration with community leaders, health departments, schools and faith-based organizations to develop local solutions.
Already making an impact
“Both of these wonderful physicians were already making a tremendous impact in Marin County – even before they became fellows,” reports CEO Mitesh Popat, MD, MPH, “so they were ‘naturals’ to be selected.”
In her current role as lead Clinics pediatrician, Dr. Hessel collaborates with other organizations to strengthen the health care safety net in Marin. This includes collaborating with organizations such as Head Start, First 5, and public school districts, as well as involvement in countywide initiatives such as Marin’s Healthy Eating Active Living and Oral Health steering committees.
Dr. Shaw, a family practice physician, has helped develop systems at the Clinics to promote more effective disease management, including the creation of patient-centered care teams and support for patients’ transition from hospitals to home. Her career is motivated by social justice and an interest in systems level changes that can improve health for both individuals and the community-at-large.
Shared passion for
improving community health
“I have been a pediatrician in Marin County for the past 13 years,” reports Dr. Hessel. “Providing patient care is extremely rewarding. But I also know the importance of addressing the larger issues that impact a patients’ health. I see it every day – financial challenges, housing insecurities, lack of access to nutritious food, and more.”
“I am participating in this fellowship in order to reduce Marin County’s health disparities – among the highest in California,” Dr. Shaw explains, “and to innovate and collaborate to promote interventions for children and their families.”
Congratulations to Dr. Hessel and Dr. Shaw!
They typify the passion and commitment of everyone on the Clinics team.
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