Today we’d like to introduce you to Chennan Clubine.
Chennan, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
A Colorado native, I was born and raised in Denver. Currently living in Colorado Springs, I am a mountain girl through and through.
I was someone who knew what I wanted to do early on in life. I witnessed my brother have a life-saving surgery when he was only 5 years old. He was the 33rd pediatric patient in the nation to have angioplasty surgery, where a balloon-type device is used to open blocked arteries, a relativity new procedure back then. After his surgery, the doctor showed us his before and after photos. I got a kick out of looking showing them to my family and friends. This procedure saved his life and he is still alive today for his older sister to pester him, which I’m sure he appreciates!
I knew I wanted to go into healthcare, but I wasn’t sure where I would go or what specific profession I wanted to pursue. When volunteering at Swedish Medical Center and Porter Hospice in Denver, I decided on nursing, because, let’s face it, nurses have way more fun than doctors! After completing my education, I was offered a full-time job with the VA in Cheyenne, Wyoming. I really enjoyed my time there, but I noticed many problems within the VA healthcare system, so I searched a few years for a different work experience, someplace where the grass was greener. I tried outpatient care, hospice, emergency department, and family care. Wherever I went, I would work all day only to leave exhausted and then come back the next day just to do it all over again. I completed mountains of tasks, like collecting hundreds of samples for lab work, charting everything, and endlessly coordinating both on and off the ward floor. I felt very productive, but not very effective, especially when it came to advancing my patient’s overall health. The entire healthcare system was overflowing, and almost all attention and resources were focused on declaring “wellness” and moving onto the next wave of patients. Eventually I, like many other healthcare professionals, experienced “burn out.” The compassion and excitement I had when first starting as a nurse all those years ago was gone.
Something needed to change. My patients were on a treadmill, with a medical system that was focused on treating symptoms, not changing lives through early, personalized care. My body was suffering from the same diseases my patients were suffering. At this point, my cholesterol was so high my doctor wanted to start me on medication. I decided enough was enough and decided to change course in my own life, and those who depended on me. I decided I needed to take a step back and re-evaluate my life, my career, and my role as a nurse. I wanted to learn how to become an effective nurse, one who effects life-enhancing change for all. My school of choice was Wellness Forum Health Institute under the guidance of Dr. Pam Popper, founder of the Wellness Forum Health. I spent three years reexamining what I thought I knew and learning how to give proper care.
Many people see good healthcare as unreachably expensive, because they see the costs of major treatment costs doubling, while time with actual doctors and healthcare providers decreasing. Right now, the system is focused on patients in / patients out, productivity rather than effecting real change in people’s long-term health. This system rewards stunning innovation like artificial hearts, prosthetic limbs, but falls short on championing change that keeps people from ever populating the medicine treadmill. Prevention is often relegated to condescending posters in the treatment rooms, while the real money goes to producing and providing medications, endless tests, complicated procedures, surgical interventions, sophisticated medical devices, etc. The question is how good or effective are all of those things in returning people to good health? Not great. Life expectancy in the United States is decreasing, not increasing. Rates of infant mortality are rising. Diagnosis rates of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, autoimmune diseases are increasing not decreasing. Turns out all this health industry productivity does not result in more healthy people.
We are simply not moving the needle from death and disease to life and health. We need to move the needle over to health!
Has it been a smooth road?
No, by no means was transitioning out of traditional healthcare a smooth road.
A little over a year ago, I was working in a clinic with a hand full of nurses and 8,000 patients! The high demand, coupled with time constraints, patients were seen every 20 minutes, started to wane on me. I was becoming more and more depressed. I wasn’t fun to work with anymore because there was no joy in what I was doing. When an opportunity arose to leave, I decided to resign. I left my work in good standing and I started working on my business. I am not very business savvy, but the community of entrepreneurs took me under their wing, encouraged me and challenged me to get going. I am incredibly grateful to those individuals who mentored me. I would not be here without them.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
Many people think the problem with healthcare is because it is so expensive. Although this is true, it is not the real reason why we have a crisis in this country. The problem with healthcare is delivering effective healthcare or healthcare that makes a difference in people’s lives. Right now, we are focused on productivity rather than being effective. Americans are great at being productive and innovative. We can create incredible things like artificial hearts, prosthetic limbs and many more amazing and incredible things. Where some of those things are good the vast majority, sadly are not. We have hundreds of medications, tests, procedures, surgical interventions and so on. The question is how good or effective are all of those things? Turns out not great. Life expectancy in the United States is decreasing, not increasing. Rates of infant mortality are rising, diagnosis rates of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, autoimmune diseases are increasing not decreasing. Turns out all this productivity is not leading to effective healthcare.
I specialize in what is known as InforMED Medical-Decision Making™ which is defined as, “We believe that it is a fundamental right of all consumers to have a complete analysis of the risks and benefits of any test, drug, supplement, procedure, or medical practice of any type BEFORE making a decision to proceed.”
I now have found meaningful work in my life. I get to see my patient improve and get better. It is tremendously rewarding. What sets us apart from others is our commitment to seeing our patients become successful in their own lives.
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Denver is full of wonderful, health-conscious people. I have traveled to many different parts of the country and there is no place quite like Colorado. Here people give generously. Coloradans care more about value and what you as an individual bring to the community. When I was first transitioning from a nursing mindset to an entrepreneurial mindset, I thought these two belief systems would be drastically different from one another but, they are not much different. Those with an entrepreneurial mindset tend to believe in resiliency, being resourceful, knowledgeable and are others-focused with an understanding that one creates value by looking to solve problems with meaningful solutions. Hey, that’s nurses in a nutshell!
- I like to say if you can’t afford me you can’t afford to get sick. Don’t wait become proactive today! It’s not expensive to get quality healthcare that makes a difference in your life. We have many membership options and ways to learn more about effective healthcare. Our basic membership starts out is less than $100. Yes, you read that right. For less than $100 a year you can experience optimal health.
- Website: empoweredinformedhealth.com
- Phone: 720-244-1789
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Lisa Bolton, Tammy Robertson, Alia Ryan