Dr. Lara Wiziecki is a provider with MeMD, board certified in Emergency Medicine and with over 19 years clinical experience! She completed medical school, an internship and her residency through Midwestern University. Learn what inspired her to be a doctor and get involved with telemedicine, as well as some tips for flu season, below!
What inspired you to be a doctor?
I worked as a phlebotomist during college and loved working in the ER. I loved the diversity and excitement. In my last year of college, I changed my major and decided to go to medical school. I’m the only person in my family to be a doctor.
What topics are you most passionate about in the health field?
Currently it’s telemedicine! I truly believe it’s the “way of the future”. I wish I had started doing this sooner. It’s a great way to treat simple complaints so that patients don’t have to spend hours in an Urgent Care and it helps “bridge the gap” for when patients can’t see their doctor. The only thing I would caution is that telemedicine is not a substitute for a primary care provider. Nothing will ever take the place of an “in-person” exam and personal relationship between a patient and their doctor.
What do you like to do when you’re not working?
I enjoy quiet time at home with my husband and “dog-ter”…an 11 year old cock-a-poo. We enjoy watching TV and love to watch movies. I love to read. I crochet (simple things like baby blankets and scarves). My husband and I enjoy traveling and I’m a die-hard Chicago Blackhawks fan. GO HAWKS!
What’s the last book that you read that you would recommend to others?
My favorite book is The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton. I’m also a fan of Nora Roberts and read all of her books… I would love to be friends with her characters. I also think J.K. Rowling is a genius, I’m a huge Harry Potter fan!
What prompted you to become involved in telemedicine?
Over the past 5 years I burned out in Emergency Medicine so I transitioned my career to Urgent Care medicine. Practicing telemedicine has been a natural transition from Urgent Care medicine. It allows me to work from home with a very flexible schedule. Plus it’s fun to take care of patients from my home office with my dog sleeping under my desk.
Has telemedicine impacted your perspective as a provider? If so, how?
Because I’m not able to physically examine a patient I have to really listen to the patient and ask questions about details that I might normally see or find myself if we were “face to face”. I listen for wheezing or difficulty breathing… I have to ask what your throat looks like… I have to ask you to palpate for pain, etc. It’s as if one of my senses has been taken away and now I have to utilize other senses.
What type of feedback have you received from patients regarding their experience with telemedicine?
Patients have told me that “this is the best thing ever”! They love not having to take time out of their busy lives to see a doctor. They love the convenience. In most cases a PCP is not available right away and patients can’t or don’t want to wait. Patients love not having to wait for hours in an Urgent Care.
I also want patients to know that if I tell them that they need to be seen “in-person” there’s a true reason for it… they may need a physical exam, they may need testing such as blood tests or x-rays… they may need an IV… It’s for their own good that I send them to a higher level of care.
With flu season around the corner, do you have any tips for readers to prevent the flu?
I would say if you are able to have a flu shot…get one. And please cover your cough and wash your hands. It’s simple advice but it can be effective.
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