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The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education official becomes certified in lifestyle medicine


Dr. Jumee Barooah, The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education’s designated institutional official and a primary care physician, recently earned board certification in lifestyle medicine – an approach that uses small lifestyle changes to treat and potentially reverse chronic disease and prevent illness.

One of the fastest growing fields of medicine, lifestyle medicine differs from mainstream medical approaches by emphasizing non-pharmaceutical, non-invasive treatments such as wellness, resiliency, movement and a nutritious diet. Patients are empowered to take their well-being into their own hands by making improvements through manageable changes in daily activities.

The Wright Center introduced a lifestyle medicine service line in 2020 to address community needs in Northeast Pennsylvania, including the prevalence of diabetes and hypertension. The Wright Center also wove lifestyle medicine into the curriculum of its graduate medical education programs, aiming to appropriately prepare the next generation of physicians to spare patients the needless suffering and expense of certain serious, long-term illnesses.

Chronic disease is responsible for up to 80% of all health care expenditure, yet most health professionals typically treat chronic disease the same way they treat communicable disease: with pills and injections. By contrast, lifestyle medicine encourages physicians to focus on the so-called pillars of health: nutrition, exercise, rest and social connectivity, according to the California-based American Board of Lifestyle Medicine (ABLM).
At The Wright Center, the lifestyle medicine curriculum will prepare health care providers to complete a thorough patient assessment of current health habits and then introduce individualized treatment plans based on specific risk factors. A Wright Center dietitian, for example, is available to meet individually with patients to develop plans for weight management.

“Now seemed like the right time to become certified because of the health care needs of our patients and community and our new lifestyle medicine curriculum,” said Barooah, who received her certification from ABLM. “One common theme in every primary care visit with patients is preventive medicine. I thought I could contribute more to my patients and my resident and fellow physicians by becoming certified.”

Dr. Jumee Barooah

Lifestyle medicine represents her fourth board certification. Barooah also is certified in internal, addiction and obesity medicine. She sees patients at The Wright Center’s Mid Valley Practice in Jermyn and the Scranton Practice.For more information or to schedule an appointment at The Wright Center for Community Health’s Mid Valley Practice, go to TheWrightCenter.org or call 570.230.0019.

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