Family medicine: focusing on individuals and their families

Family medicine is unique. The physicians in this specialty don’t focus solely on just one part of the body, or one disease, they provide overall care for the person as a unique individual. Some say they look at “the big picture.” In addition, these doctors can effectively treat multiple generations in a family in a comprehensive way.

“I went into family medicine because I like to deal with a wide variety, it makes my job interesting,” said Dr. Christopher Toupin Jr. who recently joined the newly-formed Fallbrook Healthcare Partners as its family medicine specialist.

“I like to work in partnership with my patients,” he said. “I try to avoid giving them directives. I present the facts to my patients; we discuss the pros and cons of various approaches, and make a decision together.”

Toupin treats patients from newborn to geriatric. “There is not an age I do not see,” he explained. With credentials in pediatric advanced life support, he is willing and able to take a new baby in his arms at birth and provide care for it from that point forward.

“I am set to receive my first newborn in Fallbrook this month,” Toupin said.

Whether he is caring for young children, adolescents, adults, athletes, or seniors, Toupin cares as much about their mental well-being as their physical one.

“I have helped children who are experiencing bullying issues to geriatric patients with chronic diseases,” he noted.

Studies have shown family medicine physicians effectively manage 90 percent of patients’ healthcare problems and call in specialized help for 10 percent of what they see.

“At Fallbrook Healthcare Partners, we have rotating specialists that we can collaborate with regarding our patients,” said Toupin. “We also have internal medicine specialists in our office.”

Toupin is a physician who does not readily jump to prescribe medication.

“I don’t like prescribing medication unless it is absolutely necessary, because there are side effects to everything” said Toupin. “I favor natural, healthy lifestyle changes, when possible, to attack disease processes.” A conversation Toupin likes having with patients is whether it is possible to devise a way to reduce or eliminate a medication they have been taking.

Toupin’s concern for his patients’ health and well-being do not end when they leave his office. He also tries to be “tuned in” to a patient’s family, work, and social environments in order to provide the highest quality of care possible.

“What I love is to treat entire families,” he admitted. “You don’t share personal patient information, but the family background knowledge really provides for much better treatment. Family members can be very motivating to each other.”

Toupin, his wife, and 10-month-old son have relocated here from Chicago where he worked at a south side clinic. He said he loves his new environment.

“Everyone has made me feel so welcome,” he said. “This is a very warm atmosphere and people have wanted to get to know me and talk to me about the town.” When asked about his hobbies, Toupin said he loves to read, watch movies, play games, and learn more about the Fallbrook community.

“I am really looking forward to going to the Avocado Festival!” he said, with a smile.

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