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Girl Smarts This doctor is changing the way we see medicine

These women are sharing their stories, secrets, and strategies so you can make waves in your world. Here, the physician on a mission to transform the way we think about and receive primary care: Robin Berzin.

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This doctor is changing the way we see medicine play

This doctor is changing the way we see medicine

(SYLVÈ COLLESS)

The 2018 Women’s Health Game Changers are rethinking what it means to be healthy, and they’re shifting the course of wellness for you.

These women are sharing their stories, secrets, and strategies so you can make waves in your world. Here, the physician on a mission to transform the way we think about and receive primary care: Robin Berzin.

During medical residency, Berzin, MD, was frustrated with the depth and breadth of care she was able to provide. “I’d get only 15 minutes with people, and yet, at the end of these appointments, I’d be handing out stacks of prescriptions,” she says.

Most of her patients suffered from preventable chronic diseases, “problems that often had to do with what they were eating or how they were living.” In other words, not necessarily an easy fix. Berzin dreamed of founding a clinic that would give her more time with patients and allow her to “look at the whole person.”

In 2015, she opened the first Parsley Health in Manhattan. Today, she oversees three: the original, plus one in Los Angeles and one in San Francisco. And she’s not focused on just those spots; Berzin is working to remake America’s primary-care system. (No small feat!)

“The only way primary-care physicians can survive is by seeing 40 patients a day and keeping visits very short,” she explains. By charging a flat yearly subscription fee, Parsley gets around that problem-and patients get a lot of bang for their buck, including up to five visits with their doctor (the first one lasts 75 minutes, compared to the common appointment duration in the U.S. of 13-15 minutes, according to one report); five visits with a personal health coach; unlimited direct messaging privileges with their care providers; and more.

Parsley is striking a chord: In the past three years, Berzin and her colleagues have treated thousands of patients. And she’s already fielded inquiries from people in Paris and Australia who are interested in opening clinics based on a similar model. “I truly envision building a new operating system for primary care that anyone, anywhere, can benefit from,” she says.

This article originally appeared in the October 2018 issue of Women's Health. For more great advice, pick up a copy of the issue on newsstands now!

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