Executive Orders
With the help of Dr. Ashish Sitapara, owner of Signature Medicine, business owners and other busy execs in high-stress jobs stay in top form
by Leigh Stuart

Ashish Sitapara, M.D., owner of the concierge medical practice Signature Medicine in Newtown, poses an excellent question to executives: Why get a one-time body scan, which exposes a person to excessive radiation and costs thousands of dollars, versus getting a thorough physical assessment in person from a trained professional?

“Why just see a doctor who can’t fix anything he reports?” Dr. Sitapara asks. “With our executive physical, we do a complete head-to-toe comprehensive medical health assessment. Plus, since the patient is a member of my practice, I follow through with complete medical follow-up and treatment of any risks we discover during [the] assessment.”

As a practitioner of concierge medicine, Dr. Sitapara has always offered annual physicals, but for the last two years he has been providing specially designed executive physicals meant to evaluate “everything that matters,” he says.

Whereas in an ordinary physical, a patient will have not more than 15 minutes of evaluation, and rarely receives counseling on test results, Dr. Sitapara’s evaluations run one to two hours long and include everything from a complete medical history, including family history and medications, to discussing a patient’s diet and lifestyle, to conducting a full roster of medical tests.

Of course, anyone can benefit from having a complete health review from a trained medical provider. Even so, executives and other individuals with highly demanding jobs are among those who can reap the greatest benefits from thorough evaluation, according to Dr. Sitapara.

One such executive is Ernie Flurry, who works for a leading automotive company. Flurry first came to see Dr. Sitapara about a month ago, because he was looking to have an evaluation that offered “something more than a basic physical,” Flurry says. Though only 46 years old, Flurry says he felt as if it was time to have a complete assessment of his health performed to ensure he was taking the best possible care of himself. Dr. Sitapara’s review of Flurry included evaluating the full spectrum of factors, including blood work and tests of vitamin and calcium levels, as well as several hours of one-on-one examination with the doctor himself. During this time Dr. Sitapara checked for aneurysms, performed a dermatological assessment and had a thorough discussion with him about his lifestyle overall.

“People that have been to the doctor can tell you, first, they’re waiting forever. Then, the doctor is in and out as quickly as possible,” Flurry observes. “With Dr. Sitapara, he is really looking into everything about you physically, and where you are and what you need to work on. You’re getting time; you’re not being rushed in and rushed out. You really are getting a good valuation of your health condition.”

Flurry notes that Dr. Sitapara’s assessment was also unique because, whereas many doctors will simply run tests and share results, Dr. Sitapara devised a personalized plan for Flurry to address and improve his health based upon those results.

Under Dr. Sitapara’s care, patients can access their personalized concierge care plans and individualized reports via a portal on his website. They can also receive regular e-mails regarding their plan for optimal health.

One patient who has been thoroughly impressed by this particular facet of Dr. Sitapara’s practice is 55-year-old business owner Tom Schrier, who runs a successful contracting company. Schrier first saw Dr. Sitapara after his wife, an R.N., vetted his credentials during her search for a concierge doctor for their family. Impressed by Dr. Sitapara’s qualifications, and drawn to the convenience, accessibility, availability and personalized level of care, the Schriers joined the practice more than a year ago.

“He has a mobile app that is actually really powerful,” Schrier says. “It gives you access to all your appointments, all your medical records; I can log in all of my medications, whatever I’m taking. … It’s very easy for me to go on my phone and click on an app that links me to all my medical records.”

This ready access to personal medical information is just one example of how Dr. Sitapara connects with his patients. Schrier says Dr. Sitapara’s concierge care “gives me access to somebody who really cares about me as person and about all of my medical issues. That has real power for me. Just the ability to have the physician’s cell number and to have access to care without all the red tape involved, without making an appointment or trying to fit into someone’s schedule, for me, it offers an enormous amount of convenience.

“Whether it’s over the phone, or by shooting an e-mail, there is so much accountability to everything they do,” Schrier continues. “I really have a person in my corner as my advocate when it comes to my whole medical picture, and that’s probably the biggest [asset] for me.”

Flurry agrees that Dr. Sitapara’s personalized attention is just one of the ways in which Signature Medicine excels at serving its patients.

“[Dr. Sitapara] really focuses on if there is anything that needs to be done, and there is a plan to do that,” he says. “You have all the facts, all the information on how to improve. It’s very different than anything I’ve had done at other physicals. A lot of people in busy jobs, they really don’t take the time to check to see that physically they’re doing OK. … I wanted more than just the basics. I really wanted to get checked to see if I was healthy; if not, I wanted to know what do turn that around.”

Besides an upturn in his health, Flurry reports another significant change. His experience getting an executive physical from Dr. Sitapara was so positive that he has decided to make Dr. Sitapara his primary doctor.

Signature Medicine Center for Wellness & Healthy Living
770 Newtown Yardley Road, Suite 220a
Newtown, PA 18940

* Signature Medicine works in conjunction with Signature Practice Management LLC, where the yearly fees pay for enhancements not covered by insurance.

Photograph by Allure West Studios