Leading a Healthier Pacific

MCHC gets a new doctor

Sometimes life experience is the best experience. Take the Molokai Community Health Center’s new doctor for example. She has been sharing her time and precious medical skills around the world.

Traci Mosher Stevenson the health center’s newest addition – a doctor of osteopathy, she brings seven years of rural, Polynesian experience with her.

MCHC Executive Director Desiree Puhi said she is excited to bring an osteopathic doctor to Molokai, which incorporates Eastern-style methods of healthcare.

“It’s a more holistic approach to medicine. It connects mind, body and spirit. And emphasizes eating well,” Puhi said.

The practice of osteopathy began in the early 1900s, when a doctor saw medications as more of “Band-Aid” type of care, according to Stevenson. Osteopathic doctors take a broader look at the body as a whole.

Osteopathy also relies on the idea that the muscles and bones of the body affect the nervous system and blood flow, Stevenson said.

Doctors of osteopathy (Dos) are also medical doctors (MDs), but with a difference in their specialty training.

“Doctors of osteopathy also have training through ‘osteopathic manipulative therapy,’ which is similar to but not the same as treatments that chiropractors give,” Stevenson said.

improve the health of Molokai, but it could be a model for the entire country,” Stevenson said.

She believes that helping one another is an essential value of family healthcare. She has already seen how Molokai’s community takes care of each other.

 “It’s much easier to do community health care here, because people are already of that nature,” she said. Stevenson encourages simple measures, such as drinking less soda and walking more.

 “We want to empower people to take charge of their own,” she added. “We don’t want to see people when they are sick. We want to see them beforehand and prevent them from becoming sick.”


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