Treating Children’s Bodies and Minds
A framed picture of a young boy hangs over Dr. Anne Young’s desk at Valle del Sol’s Mi Salud clinic in Phoenix. While many professionals reserve that space for family photos or degrees, Young, D.O., includes patients who have made a significant impact during her time as a physician.
Since starting consultations in July 2012, Dr. Young, a board certified pediatrician, has treated the boy for numerous medical conditions including asthma, seizures, developmental delays, autism, ADHD and weight issues. In that time, Dr. Young has been able to improve the young patient’s condition through implementing various interventions alongside treatment including speech and occupational therapies.
A native of Phoenix, Dr. Young has worked at the clinic for over a year after returning home from doing her residency in Georgia, bringing the same dedication and expertise to every patient that she brought to the young boy.
Dr. Young always knew she would come back to the state she grew up in, wanting to build a life with her husband.
Luckily, she found the perfect place to help her achieve that goal while practicing medicine and working with underserved communities at Valle del Sol. As one of the few integrated physical and behavioral health clinics in the country, its philosophy matches with her idea of wellness in treating the whole body and not just physical ailments.
“The body can’t live without the mind,” she says.
While many wander into their 20s searching for what they want to do with their lives, Dr. Young has always been pulled toward a career in medicine from the early age of 12, after being fascinated and inspired in her 7th grade science class. Combine this fascination with the ability to change the world and the desire to work with kids, and the decision to attend medical school was an easy one to make.
While attending Midwestern University, it was common for many other students to initially study pediatrics before deciding otherwise and moving to another specialization; for Dr. Young, she was clear about her intentions from the beginning and her time in pediatrics simply solidified her decision to help children enjoy healthy, productive childhoods.
The dedication she showed in school has only increased with the introduction of her patients. The excitement Dr. Young shows over the noise maker that helps calm autistic patients in one of the exam rooms or a magnet that helps patients remember when to get the next round of vaccinations for HPV is palpable.
When not working at the clinic or applying for grants to start new initiatives and programs, she can often be found volunteering at local hospitals. In addition to treating any concerns the patient has, Dr. Young also attempts to teach them about general wellness including healthy eating and smart lifestyle choices.
In a clinic already filled with dedicated doctors and technicians that work tirelessly to ensure their patients leave their offices healthier and better educated, Dr. Young stands out as a professional that is serving to make her community a better place to live.
Written by Kurt R. Sheppard
Mr. Sheppard is chief executive officer of Valle del Sol, a health care nonprofit organization that combines primary care and mental health services for an integrated approach to treat the whole person—mind, body and spirit.