By LOIS KINDLE
Patients can “have their cake and eat it too” at a medical practice in Ruskin that offers a mix of both traditional Western and ancient Eastern forms of healthcare.
Opened four years ago, Sun City Center Health and Wellness has a multicultural staff who hails from this country, Thailand, China, Colombia and the Philippines and includes a medical doctor, advanced registered nurse practitioner, four doctors of oriental medicine and three licensed massage therapists.
Their services are offered to folks in southern Hillsborough and northern Manatee counties and include family healthcare, acupuncture, traditional Chinese medicine, Five Element acupuncture and therapeutic massage.
“When patients first come here, we take their medical histories, and included in their appointment (with the doctor or ARNP), more often than not, is an elective consult with an acupuncturist,” said Jim Dazet, practice administrator.
“That’s what makes the practice unique,” Dazet said.
“We’re different because we’ve integrated both Eastern and Western medicine,” he continued. “If someone comes in with back or sciatic pain, we rarely prescribe pain medication. Instead a doctor of oriental medicine would use acupuncture cupping, moxibustion, tui na (a cross between acupressure and shiatsu), massage, herbals or ultrasound (alone or in combination) to treat the patient.”
Panyada Sachs, one of Sun City Center Health and Wellness’ doctors of oriental medicine, is a former mechanical engineer who worked on biomedical and aerospace applications.
“I had a severe allergy no one could help,” the Thai native said. “I finally went to an acupuncturist and was able to get relief for several days at a time. That made me see the value of oriental medicine, which has been practiced for thousands of years.”
Recognizing how she might change people’s lives sparked a career change.
Sachs trained in both the United States and China to earn her degree in oriental medicine. She enjoys the challenge of solving problems and finding ways to help her patients and has traveled to China and other countries to expand her skills in acupuncture and herbal medicine.
“Acupuncture can be used to alleviate chronic back and knee pain, balance issues, depression, anxiety, sleep issues, eye problems and so much more,” she said.
The practice’s website, www.suncitycenterhaw.com, offers a list of 43 such conditions.
For Sachs, treating patients is a labor of love.
“I like to help people feel better,” she said. “I know now I’m on the right path.”
Sun City Center Health and Wellness, 3040 College Ave. E, Ruskin, is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Friday.
For an appointment or more information, call 813-331-3940.