Michael Klaper, MD, Joins Staff at TrueNorth
The following is an interview with Dr. Klaper
Dr. Klaper, you've had some international medical experiences during your career. Please tell us about that.
After graduating from the University of Illinois College of Medicine in Chicago in 1972, I took post-graduate training in internal medicine, surgery, anesthesiology and orthopedics at Vancouver General Hospital in British Columbia, Canada. Then, in preparation for work at an isolated hospital in the mountains of northern California, I studied obstetrics at the University of California in San Francisco. My career then took me to a number of locations, doing acute care medicine, and eventually becoming board certified in urgent care medicine.
However, as my interest in health promotion increased, I became director of a vegan health spa in southern Florida in the mid 1990s, which gave me an insight into the healing powers of plant-based nutrition. However, financial realities required me to return to urgent care medicine, which led me to practice for 11 years on the beautiful island of Maui in Hawaii, and almost three years in Whangarei, New Zealand.
Yet, as challenging as urgent care medicine can be, I began to long for a setting where colleagues openly accepted the concept of helping people get truly healthier, rather than patching them up after they become ill or injured.
Consequently, when Dr. Alan Goldhamer offered me a position on the staff at TrueNorth Health Clinic in Santa Rosa, California, I jumped at the chance.
What makes TrueNorth such a good fit for you?
The overall philosophy of TrueNorth makes it a perfect match for my abilities and goals. First and foremost, the dietary program is vegan, so there is no conflict with my beliefs in a non-violent diet and lifestyle.
Dr. Goldhamer and his experienced staff have long recognized the profound healing properties of a plant-based diet, so the opportunity to apply this nutritional approach to a variety of medical conditions makes this style of medicine extremely fascinating and satisfying for me. I learn something new from each patient and from my daily discussions with my nutritionally-savvy colleagues, so working here is like a fellowship in applied nutritional medicine for me -- something that warms the heart of this perennial student of medicine and healing.
TrueNorth Health Clinic is nutritional medicine done right, and everything here is first class. The facility is clean, with spacious, comfortable accommodations for over 40 guests, combined with doctors offices, exercise facilities, lecture rooms, professional video capabilities -- a top-flight operation on every level. The qualities and competence of my medical and chiropractic colleagues, the friendly support personnel, the skilled kitchen staff who produce three, delicious, whole food, organic, vegan meals every day, all make it a joy to come to work each day.
As an extra bonus for this physician who loves to teach, are the interns on our staff who along with the staff doctors, see each inpatient twice daily and who then report to me every morning for teaching rounds. There we discuss the cases of concern, review the laboratory results, and explore the clinical, medical and nutritional aspects of each guest. After conferring with our other colleagues, and outside specialists if necessary, we can make the best therapeutic decisions, while adding to the interns' clinical insights and experiences.
The guests who stay here, and whom we see as outpatients, are wonderful to work with, as well. If they have sought out the services of TrueNorth, they already understand the importance of nutrition and lifestyle in helping them overcome their health challenges. Thus, they are highly motivated, which makes them a pleasure to serve. It is so gratifying for me to witness their improvements in conditions that their regular physicians label as intractable, such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, clogged arteries, lupus and other autoimmune diseases, and many other serious disease states. These are otherwise frightening conditions, often seen as hopeless by the patients and their doctors, only treatable with a lifetime of expensive medications. So, one of the great joys of practice here is to be able to quickly reduce, and eventually eliminate most or all of the bottles of medications that many of our guests bring in with them.
We have an active outpatient practice, so if it is more practical for them, people can just spend an hour with me for an assessment and a treatment plan, without having to check in for an inpatient stay. I also provide a telephone consultation service for people to discuss their conditions and concerns long distance, and to follow-up with me after a stay here at TrueNorth.
The city of Santa Rosa is charming, with a symphony orchestra and many other amenities, while the northern California climate provides a salubrious setting for this unique and remarkable clinic. So, all in all, I am just delighted to have become part of the TrueNorth Health Center family and I look forward to a long, happy association with them. I hope many people take advantage of the programs we offer, and of my counseling services, in particular.
For more information about TrueNorth Clinic, visit their website at: http://www.healthpromoting.com/