In 2005 we started Tabasco Health Care in order to safeguard our relationship with both our patients and the practice of medicine. During this time the trend in medical practices was to develop an “efficiency of scale” that we felt would adversely alter the culture of medicine. In lieu of embracing the model of larger practices, we opted to create a practice based on independent efficiency while maintaining a personal and attentive relationship with our patients.
In retrospect, the seeds giving raise to Tabasco Health Care date back many years. We had the good fortune of having been immersed in both the clinical and philosophical aspects of heath care early in our career. Having lived, worked and studied in Mexico, our view of health care was heavily influenced by the work of Ivan Illich* and his proteges which left a lasting impression on us. Illich’s groundbreaking work, Medical Nemesis** exposes the “counter-intuitive misadventures” characteristic of our industrial society. Unfortunately, his analysis and predictions have been realized in the fragmentated and depersonalized practice of medicine in the 21st century.
Being guided by Illich’s principles we chose to structure our practice to be consistent with our belief. In order to fully appreciate the spectrum of our patient’s plight both in illness and health, it is vital to establish an environment that is neither fragmented nor dismissive in nature. To this end we chose to locate our medical practice on our property and integrate it into our life. We utilize innovative methods and technology that are convivial with our core beliefs.
Presently the focus of our practice continues to evolve based upon the emerging health and social issues we collectively face: from the opioid epidemic, to the need to develop safe and effective options for the treatment of chronic physical and emotional pain. Additionally, addressing the ever-increasing chronic illnesses caused by environmental and biological toxins which affect multiple body systems and present with complex symptoms can be a daunting process. Unfortunately, these patients often fall between the cracks of the medical sub-specialist system. Perhaps their only hope is that of a curious and compassionate approach that takes the time to sort out their symptoms and stand as their vanguard while seeking alternative approaches to meet their needs.
Kurt and Lucinda Grovenburg
* Ivan Illich was one of the most radical thinkers of the late 20th century. In the 1970s, from his think-tank in Mexico, he had a major impact on international readers, especially the young, through his radically anti-technocratic, anti-institutional arguments on health, education, transport and energy. More than any other thinker of the twentieth century, Ivan Illich has challenged institutional bureaucracies and provided a strong voice for small communities and self-help initiatives.