Institute for Medical Wellness
Oct 05, 2016 09:39PM
By Mica McCullough
Dr. Steven Horvitz knew from an early age that he wanted to be a doctor. His father was a family doctor, and Horvitz remembers admiring the way his father ran his practice, building good, trusting relationships with his patients. Horvitz claims, “It was ingrained from an early age, I never considered doing anything else.”
However, Horvitz knew he wanted to be a different type of doctor; he felt he was a “why” kid—wanting to get as close as possible to initiating the cause of things. This led him to pursue a more holistic approach to medicine, which consists of treating the cause of a disease rather than its symptoms. “I came to holistic medicine myself, although my father probably practiced holistic medicine without really knowing it.”
This innate curiosity led the Philadelphia native to major in chemistry at Dickinson College. He then pursued a medical degree at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, where he graduated in 1991. After finishing his Family Practice Residency in 1994, Horvitz began working for a doctor, which led to opening his own practice in Moorestown in 1998. It started out as a traditional practice, but by 2005, Horvitz was no longer enjoying his job. “I was working longer hours, getting less joy out of it, and I felt there were too many external influences from the government and insurance companies, so I started researching other ways to practice medicine yet still maintain my independence.”
As a result, Horvitz opened his current practice, the Institute for Medical Wellness, in 2008. This was New Jersey’s first Direct Primary Care (DPC) practice, an arrangement in which, rather than submitting claims through insurance companies, patients pay a yearly or monthly fee for medical services. Horvitz sees fewer than 1,000 patients instead of the typical 2,500 patients seen by traditional doctors. This allows him to spend more time with his patients, and more time asking “why” to get to the root causes of their ailments and create an individualized plan of care for each patient.
“This is what people want and what doctors want,” Horvitz says. “I get to spend more time with patients and help people more. When it comes to health care, the current system doesn’t do it justice. I was practicing DPC before DPC had a name.”
Direct Primary Care has proven to be a successful model for him. “How many doctors can say they enjoy going to work every day? I do. The healthcare system may be crazy, but my office is its own little system. It feels good to know that my patients value my work and what I bring to them, that they choose my practice over their other healthcare options. That’s what makes me want to come to work. Why wouldn’t you want to go somewhere where you’re wanted, where you’re valued?”
Horvitz treats patients’ ailments with a combination of risk management, diet, nutrition, lifestyle accommodations and exercise. “Everything is about balance,” he advises. “My practice is re-balancing people’s lives, while letting them maintain freedom and control over their health. My patients want to be healthy and happy, and I want them to be healthy and happy. Our incentives align.” Horvitz wants to make sure that the regimen he prescribes is exactly what that individual needs, claiming, “I don’t treat populations, I treat individuals.”
The Institute for Medical Wellness is located at (abbreviated street address) in (town). For more information, to make an appointment or sign up for the practice’s free newsletter, call 856-231-0590 or visit DrHorvitz.com.