Dushyant Viswanathan, MD, a dual board-certified integrative internal medicine and hospital medicine specialist had one purpose in bringing his service to Lompoc Valley Medical Center: Hospital; “We want to create a culture that will ultimately serve the community,” said the physician known as Dr. DV.
“Hold us accountable. We want to really elevate the standards for what medical care should be. What do people want that they’re not getting, and how can the hospital really help with that?”
He has worked for hospitals in Los Angeles and Palm Springs as a contractor physician and began investigating LVMC when he heard it needed a hospitalist service.
“I didn’t have a hospital via which I could impact the community in a significant way; previous hospitals I worked at were megalithic corporate structures with no soul; LVMC, I can call my home,” he says. He has since moved to Lompoc with his wife and children and purchased a home.
“It’s just perfect,” he says. “I can function at the level I want to. I can help create a system from the top down, where everybody works as a team. It’s really easy to do that here. There is good communication and a high intelligence level in the staff.” Born in India and reared in Michigan and California, he was driven to follow the humanistic and compassionate elements of medicine. He became a physical trainer and studied yoga.
He earned his Doctorate of Medicine at St. George’s University School of Medicine, completed his Internal Medicine internship at San Joaquin General Hospital in Stockton, and completed his Internal Medicine residency at the University of Maryland. He is board certified in Internal Medicine and Integrative Medicine and will be board certified in endocrinology in two years. He previously ran a chronic pain clinic, using cutting-edge clinical medical practices to transition people off narcotics.
Dr. Viswanathan said he is fascinated by the chronic disease epidemic, and figuring out how to stop the cycle of people becoming sicker and sicker. He founded The Columbia Center for Integrative Medicine in 2012, opened three offices on both coasts and as his reputation grew, he started serving patients as far away as Europe.
People fly to his private office in Columbia, MD and to Los Angeles for a comprehensive consultation. He seeks to eliminate chronic illnesses in people and champions the assessment and treatment of the human microbiome. “I do house calls,” he explains.
“I think it’s important to be that grounded in the basics. It’s not just Lompoc Valley Medical Center, it’s the whole country that has been let down by the medical system. So much has to do with the lack of humanity, lack of compassion in the system.
It all has to do with how we talk to people and how we treat them, and our tone and attitude, as much as anything in medicine we order, or any procedure. Plus we have to stay up-to-date. Most doctors are practicing based on out-of-date science. We represent the cutting edge in medicine and the future.”
What is a Hospitalist?
Hospital medicine is a specialty organized around a site of care (such as emergency medicine), as opposed to an organ (such as cardiology), a disease (such as oncology) or an age group (such as pediatrics). Hospitalists are usually Internal Medicine specialists.