Functional Medicine for the Underserved. A team-based approach for cost effective, time sensitive, exemplary patient care.

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Abstract Summary

Functional medicine can be a time consuming, expensive luxury that most average health consumers cannot afford, but it does not have to be. By leveraging the knowledge and experience of an interdisciplinary team, a functional medicine approach to care was implemented into a busy practice at a Federally Qualified Health Center with standard 20-minute time slots. A provider, wellness coach, nutritionist and behavioral health clinician work together to assess, manage, and develop individualized care plans for those individuals who wish to enhance their health through lifestyle changes. The functional approach helps illicit foundational changes in diet, movement, sleep, stress, and mental health without exhaustive laboratory testing, and excessive supplementation. Functional medicine tools such as the timeline, matrix, food plans and the multiple symptoms questionnaire are used to direct individualized patient care plans and evaluate progress. Throughout the process the patient is encouraged to make health related goals, and the team helps the patient accomplish and track those goals. Patients have regular phone and in-person follow-up visits with a health coach, and meet frequently with their provider to galvanize motivation and accountability. To ensure the financial sustainability of the model, flip-visits are billed to optimize provider productivity, and enrich the patients experience by spending more time with the team.  



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While getting his undergraduate degree in biochemistry, Matt worked as a rafting guide throughout the Northwest. After finding his path into medicine, he steadfastly studied and earned his doctorate of nursing practice degree from the University of Portland. Currently, he works at a FQHC in Oregon, where he has pioneered the organization's functional medicine approach. In addition to primary care, he also teaches multiple cooking and nutrition classes and facilitates a walking for wellness group. When not motivating patients, you can find Matt tending to his organic vegetable garden, trail running or playing with his extraordinary wife and two children.