These lists are excerpted from The Best Doctors in America®2007-2008 database, which includes over 40,000 doctors in more than 40 medical specialties.The Best Doctors in America®database is compiled and maintained by Best Doctors, Inc.For more information, visit www.bestdoctors.com, or contact Best Doctors by telephone at 800-675-1199 or by e-mail at [email protected]Please note that lists of doctors are not available on the Best Doctors web site.Best Doctors, Inc., has used its best efforts in assembling material for this list, but does not warrant that the information contained herein is complete or accurate, and does not assume, and hereby disclaims, any liability to any person for any loss or damage caused by errors or omissions herein, whether such errors or omissions result from negligence, accident, or any other cause.Copyright 2008, Best Doctors, Inc.©Used under license, all rights reserved.This list, or any parts thereof, must not be reproduced in any form without written permission from Best Doctors, Inc.No commercial use of the information in this list may be made without the permission of Best Doctors, Inc.No fees may be charged, directly or indirectly, for the use of the information in this list without permission.
If you’re one of the millions of Americans suffering through the miserable symptoms associated with allergies, chronic nasal stuffiness, or asthma, help is available. Dr. Edward Stewart of Allergy and Asthma Care of Florida, who was recently named one of America’s Best Doctors for 2008, knows firsthand the misery these symptoms can bring. He also understands the importance of treatment and maintenance, both for his patients’ sake and his own.
It was while Dr. Stewart was in his internal medicine residency that he became interested in the field of allergies.
“Growing up, the pediatrician always told my parents that I was allergic to dogs, so I was never able to have one,” Dr. Stewart recalls. “I went on to typically miss several days of school and work a year due to allergy-type symptoms, yet the connection wasn’t there.”
One of Dr. Stewart’s instructors heard him sniffling during a morning conference and wrote a prescription for allergy medications—something Dr. Stewart had considered in the past.
“I couldn’t believe how much better I felt,” he says. “Since that time, I haven’t missed a day in 30 years. And, now I have a dog.”
Dr. Stewart points out that it’s important for patients (from infants to adults) with rhinitis symptoms to get checked by a doctor because an individual can’t tell whether the symptoms are allergy-related without proper medical testing.
“Through a battery of tests we can determine what a patient is allergic to, be it an environmental allergy like mold, grass, roaches, or pollen, or a different type of allergy such as a food allergy,” Dr. Stewart says. “Through the testing process, we may be able to identify the cause of a patient’s symptoms and recommend the correct course of action to begin alleviating those symptoms, whether they’re caused by allergies or not.”
Using the latest testing techniques, including both skin and blood tests, Dr. Stewart measures the body’s reaction to determine if an allergic reaction is present. Treatments include lifestyle changes, medications, and even desensitization injections. Each treatment plan is tailored to the patient’s individual needs.
“It’s a matter of sorting through significant and insignificant findings,” he explains. “The science of allergies requires extensive training and expertise. We not only have to know the medical side of the testing, but also which allergens are appropriate for our area and each patient. I find it very intriguing. It’s important for a patient to know what’s causing their symptoms because the treatments are very different and there may be several options available.”
For the patient dealing with the unpleasant and often frightening symptoms of asthma, Dr. Stewart believes in thorough testing to determine the severity of the airway constriction before recommending treatment.
“All our staff is currently taking part in an asthma educator program designed to instruct nurses and assistants how to better understand and treat asthma,” Dr. Stewart says. “Our goal is to keep the asthmatics out of the emergency room.”
Dr. Stewart also believes in keeping up with latest science and technology for his field—a move he says is necessary to be a successful doctor.
“Our office participates in a variety of trials related to allergies and asthma,” he explains. “These are medications or treatments that are pending FDA approval. It allows us to offer our patients cutting-edge technology and treatment options.”
Dr. Stewart has been involved in more than 120 clinical studies, and he says it’s his way of keeping his finger on the pulse of what’s coming in the future.
“I find my work to be incredibly satisfying,” Dr. Stewart says. “As a rule, we help patients to truly feel better without having to use medications or procedures with unacceptable safety concerns. It’s a very happy office.”
G. Edward Stewart II, M.D.
Allergy and Asthma Care of Florida
1500 SE Magnolia Ext., Stes 203,204
Ocala, Florida 34471
1501 US Hwy 441 North, Suite 1406
The Villages, Florida 32159
If I have seen further it is only by standing on the shoulders of giants.” This quote, spoken by Sir Isaac Newton centuries ago, still holds true today. Just ask Internist Dr. William Trice who was recently named one of America’s Best Doctors.
“This is a humbling honor and one that I accept on behalf of the physicians who have helped shape my life–my father, grandfather, and Dr. Adamson, whose middle name I bear.
“The history and evolution of medicine has very much been a part of my life,” Dr. Trice adds. “The technology has obviously changed through the years, but the core purpose of medicine remains the same–to care for patients in a thorough and compassionate way.”
And it’s a purpose Dr. Trice takes very seriously. As an internal medicine specialist (a doctor who specializes in adult care and sees patients ages 18 and up), Dr. Trice believes in arming his patients with as much information as possible.
“The practice of medicine has become a confusing maze for patients,” he says. “No one doctor can know it all. What primary care medicine does is to help the patient work through which specialists and procedures would best suit their needs. There are endless possibilities when it comes to medical care and they each have their own set of plusses and minuses.”
Practicing in Ocala for 33 years, Dr. Trice’s medical internship was at the Gunderson Clinic in Lacrosse, Wisconsin. Following two years in the Army, including a tour of duty in Vietnam, Dr. Trice returned to the states and entered a three-year internal medicine residency at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.
“But I had too much sand in my shoes to stay away from Florida,” he recalls. “I’ve been here ever since.”
For Dr. Trice and his dedicated staff, patient care is the number one priority and he invites patients who desire in-depth care to experience his practice.
“I believe in the importance of a thorough annual exam,” he says. “I consider it a way-point on life’s path. The exam allows us to reevaluate and update existing conditions and find others that may have surfaced throughout the year.
“This is an old-fashioned office,” Dr. Trice continues. “It’s a one-man-show with me being the only doctor. I have a wonderful, caring staff, many of whom have been with me for more than a decade. We know our patients by name and a human will always answer the phone. We offer patients a very personal approach to medicine.”
One staff member Dr. Trice couldn’t live without is his wife of 40 years, Barbara.
“She’s my trusted advisor, my business manager, and my best friend,” he says.
Of course the personalized care each patient receives doesn’t mean the office is lacking in technology.
“Our office is convenient for our patients,” Dr. Trice says. “We have an on-site laboratory and often get our test results the same day, allowing me to notify patients efficiently and quickly. We also offer on-site ultrasound capabilities and perform on-site EKGs and lung-function tests.
“I see all the patients myself and do my best to call each one back personally with any results they might be waiting for or to answer any questions they may have,” Dr. Trice adds. “I built my practice on caring for each patient as an individual—no two people will experience the same disease the same way.”
Dr. Trice still fondly recalls a conversation he had with a Mayo Clinic staff doctor while still in his medial residency.
“He said after a while the patients become more interesting than the diseases,” says Dr. Trice. “In the midst of all the fascinating diseases and cutting-edge treatments, I didn’t see how that could be. After 30-plus years in medicine, I think he’s right. It’s a privilege to treat each patient. They allow me into their lives and that’s a real level of trust.”
And when speaking with Dr. Trice’s patients, it’s obvious that the respect is mutual.
“I have a lot of medical problems,” says retired firefighter James Peyton who has been seeing Dr. Trice for eight years. “I’ve seen plenty of doctors in Ocala, Gainesville, and even at Shands and Dr. Trice is the one I recommend to others. So many doctors spend five minutes with you and then you’re out the door. That to me, is unacceptable. Dr. Trice listens thoroughly and always takes the time to explain the options. Seeing him is like visiting an old friend or relative–he truly cares for his patients.”
Dr. William Trice
2723 SE Maricamp Road
Ocala, FL 34471
Dr. Vincent Palmire’s resume reads like a guide to professional excellence. A magna cum laude, Phi Alpha Beta graduate of Pomona College in physical chemistry; Alpha Omega Alpha, magna cum laude from the Baylor College of Medicine; diplomat of the American Board of Anesthesiology; chief of cardiovascular anesthesia at Munroe Regional Medical Center—his career has been a steady ascent to the top of his field. Most recently, the cardiovascular anesthesiologist at the Ocala Heart & Vascular Institute was named one of the Best Doctors in America 2008.
But to hear Dr. Palmire describe it, his ambitious career is as much a reflection of the support and guidance from peers over the years as personal effort.
“A watch has a beautiful face plate, but underneath is a very intricate mechanism responsible for the workings of that watch,” he explains during a rare break in his 80-hour workweek. “So much has to happen for somebody to become good at what they do.”
His achievements, he humbly stresses, could have never happened without the help of an understanding family, supportive colleagues, and a cooperative hospital administration.
“If a hospital doesn’t support what physicians do, we can’t do our best,” Dr. Palmire says. “Munroe Regional is excellent about that. They give us the latest in technology, hire the best staff, listen when we have a problem, and put the physicians in charge. Munroe lets us do our work the way we know how to do it. It’s the pride of the community for cardiac services and has been for years.”
Munroe Regional Medical Center was recently ranked the top hospital in quality care among all VHA hospitals in the Southeast. He describes his colleagues there as “some of the most talented physicians I’ve ever met, in and outside of the heart field,” and he credits former MRMC president Dyer Michell and current president/CEO Steve Purves for fostering a culture of cooperation between the administration and the physicians.
Dr. Palmire has worked closely with his associates at the Ocala Heart & Vascular Institute for nearly two decades now, and he is quick to relay his respect for their expertise.
“I’ve worked with Dr. Paul Robertie for 20 years, and he’s just a wonderful resource,” says Dr. Palmire. “And what has kept my interest in all this is the overseas mission work I’ve done with [Drs.] Peter Chung and John Galat.”
It’s the work Dr. Palmire is most proud of as a physician. Since 1994, he has brought his expertise to such far-flung locales as Nanjing, China; Inner Mongolia; North Korea; and Tanzania, Africa. Together, he and Dr. Chung have visited China more than 25 times and opened five open-heart practices there.
“You shouldn’t give people fish; you should teach them how to fish,” Dr. Palmire remarks. “Then you have accomplished something with your life. But no matter where I am or what I am doing, I have enjoyed unwavering support from my wife, Debra. She is the best.”
Up next in his travel log is Outer Mongolia this fall. Usually, he completes two or three overseas trips a year, for two to three weeks at a time. The practice supports its physicians’ travel by paying them during their time away and donating materials. That commitment to the mission work, Dr. Palmire says, makes all the difference.
“We feel strongly that it’s a part of the calling of our vocation,” he says.
Today, the one-time aspiring physicist has no doubt that practicing medicine is his life’s mission. Each case he assumes is a unique opportunity to provide care and comfort for a patient in need, whether he’s at MRMC in Ocala or in an understaffed hospital in a third-world country. The work is praise enough for Dr. Palmire, and the accolades only serve to remind him of how many people have helped him achieve his position.
“Any time anybody is recognized, it means they’ve taken what they’ve been given and done something with it,” he says. “But you have to have all the right circumstances and all the right people.”
Dr. Vincent Palmire
Ocala Heart & Vascular Institute
1511 SW 1st Avenue
Ocala, Florida 34474