We have never met Dr. David Jones… but we appreciate such a healing pioneer. As Dr. Jones moves into retirement, this article from Oregon’s Ashland Daily Tidings captured his journey in healing. The sentence in that article that caught our eye and prompted this blog post was simply this: “These were lifestyle issues we were trying to treat pharmacologically,” said Jones, “but for me, it’s about truly caring for the patient in all domains of life.” Enjoy a long retirement, Dr. Jones!
Jones, 74, has been chief of staff at Ashland Community Hospital and president of the Southern Oregon Society of Preventive Medicine during his career, and was a founder of the Institute of Functional Medicine, which trains professionals in personalizing health care with treatment of “underlying causes of illness … instead of us diagnosing symptoms and handing out tablets.”
Jones grew up in the Richmond-San Pablo area of San Francisco Bay, where he was surrounded by poverty and the illness of his parents, who had eighth-grade educations. His relentless questions about sickness and his desire for knowledge drove him to get a degree in English literature and linguistics. From there, he jumped into med school at UC Davis.
A few years into his practice, Jones said to himself, “There has to be more to this, the origins of illness” and he began intensive research into why people get sick — and how they can get back to health and maintain it, but not just with pills, he says, which “just suppress symptoms.”From this, Jones and several other like-minded doctors worked from the foundation that “poor nutrition, lack of exercise and increasing stress leads to an imbalance we call disease” and founded the nonprofit Institute of Functional Medicine in Puget Sound. It has 60 employees now.
“These were lifestyle issues we were trying to treat pharmacologically,” said Jones, “but for me, it’s about truly caring for the patient in all domains of life.”
Functional medicine also looks at “social determinants” in the community, including exposure to food deserts, which are areas with no healthy food within walking distance. Jones took part in a study in Baltimore where they found that life expectancy and wellness could be predicted from where you got off the train or bus — that is, if you lived in a low-income neighborhood with little or no health care, there’s a huge chance you won’t be too healthy.
For more information please see original article: 45 years of healing | Daily Tidings
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