Husband and Wife Duo Join Eisenhower Primary Care 365
The couple moved to the desert last fall from Spokane, Washington. “It’s the first time we’ve worked together in the same practice,” says Dr. Montgomery. In Spokane, she saw patients and taught residents and students about family medicine, achieving full professor status while still in her forties.
“When I first went to medical school [at Mayo Medical School in Minnesota], I thought I wanted to go into oncology, but found I loved all my rotations,” she relates. “Toward the end of my second year, I did a family medicine clerkship with a family physician with a small child and realized that family medicine was not only fun but I could also have a family of my own. Plus, one of my mentors at Mayo ended up being president of the family medicine board, and it became my calling.”
Before moving to Washington, Dr. Montgomery practiced full-scope family medicine in rural southern Minnesota. She also became a strong advocate for breastfeeding, teaching her patients and residents about its benefits, and becoming active in the national Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine. She recently completed an MBA in Health Care Management at Gonzaga University.
Dr. Stream, originally from Seattle, completed his medical training there, including medical school at the University of Washington and a family medicine residency at Swedish Medical Center.
“Similar to Anne, I practiced in a small town for six years after training,” he says. “From the time I was in college, I planned to do family medicine. I liked being a more comprehensive provider versus having a narrow focus. And I liked working in, and serving, a community to meet their basic health care needs.
“I relocated to Spokane to join a large medical group,” he continues. “For a long time, I’d had an interest in information technology, so I completed a master’s degree in informatics and led the electronic medical record implementation for the 300-provider medical group I was working for.
“I really like doing both patient care and informatics,” Dr. Stream adds. “I like being the person who not only uses the system, but who works with the IT staff to improve the system for physicians. Ultimately, we can serve patients better.”
While in Washington, the two physicians became active in the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP). In fact, they are the only couple to have simultaneously served as president of the national and state chapter of AAFP (he and she, respectively). Dr. Montgomery continues to serve on the AAFP’s Commission
Today, Dr. Montgomery’s and Dr. Stream’s diverse experiences, unique skillsets and commitment to family medicine have found an ideal home within Eisenhower Primary Care 365, the innovative program that offers patients extended face-to-face appointment times, continuous communication using secure online messaging,
and unprecedented access to their chosen doctor. They both practice at the Eisenhower George and Julia Argyros Health Center in La Quinta.
Dr. Montgomery sees patients three half-days a week, supervises the residents in Eisenhower’s new Family Medicine Residency Program two half-days a week, and spends the remainder of her work week administering the residency program.
“I inherited someone else’s practice, so I started seeing patients right away,” she says. “But I like being busy.” Dr. Montgomery is equally enthusiastic about her work with the Family Medicine Residency Program — one of the newest programs of its kind in the nation.
“I’ve been getting to know our current residents and was part of the interviewing process for the second group of eight residents who started earlier this month,” she says. “It’s really rewarding to be part of this new program, and we’re working on ways to get more young families into the practice, and to involve the residents in community outreach.”
In addition to seeing his own patients, Dr. Stream is putting his informatics expertise to good use.
“I’m involved in preparations to switch our electronic medical records to a new and improved system, and that’s very exciting,” he says. “It’s a great opportunity to be a bridge between the folks who know the clinical aspects of medicine and workflow, and what information technology systems can do to support that.
“And, I absolutely enjoy being part of Eisenhower Primary Care 365,” he continues. “Having that extended time for a patient’s initial visit, getting to know the patient’s history…it all makes a difference. It also provides a foundation for future online messaging regarding minor health issues that may arise between visits.”
“Eisenhower 365 really emphasizes relationships between patient and doctor,” explains Dr. Montgomery. “That is what gives me the most satisfaction — having good, long-term relationships with patients, getting to know who they are and what they need, and how I can help.”
“To echo that, it really is all about relationships,” notes Dr. Stream. “I was in my last job for 22 years, seeing many of the same patients all that time. I look forward to building that type of relationship with a new group of patients here, getting to know them and their families, and working with them to manage their health and wellness.”
He also gives high marks to the Eisenhower 365 practice as a place to work.
“The staff and physicians who work here are truly focused and share a commitment to give the best possible care,” adds Dr. Stream. “They also care about one another and work together well. Every day is a reaffirmation that we made a good choice to come here.”
To learn more about Eisenhower Primary Care 365, call 760-360-3365 or visit emc.org/365.