By David Rogers | Daily News Staff Writer
10/13/2013 – Residents wanting care close to home for their children’s medical needs have a new option.
Dr. Natalie Geary opened a pediatrics and family medicine practice Oct. 1 in Royal Poinciana Plaza, Suite 5C.
Geary, former chief patient experience officer at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, has family and friends in Palm Beach. A graduate of Harvard University and Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, she moved to West Palm Beach in March to restart her private practice.
Her office in Palm Beach follows the concierge model.
She accepts a smaller pool of patients so she can spend more time with each, Geary said. The annual fee of $2,000 covers all office visits, excluding services provided by laboratories and imaging centers.
“There are patients who come once a year, but most pediatric patients come between eight to 10 times a year. That’s how I base that fee,” she said. She provides receipts to patients for insurance company reimbursement.
“I do house calls. It’s pretty inclusive for what I do,” said Geary, who co-authored this year The South Beach Diet Gluten Solution with Dr. Arthur Agatson and The Food Cure for Kids: A Nutritional Approach to Your Child’s Wellness with Dr. Oz Garcia in 2010.
Before her move in 2010 to Miami, she headed a private pediatric practice in Manhattan.
There, Geary realized the importance of spending more time with patients than a typical group practice allows.
“Most pediatric and family medicine practices see six to seven patients an hour,” she said. “I started my own practice because I wanted the luxury of having time to spend with families, to know them. I don’t think you can deliver quality medicine in six-minute increments.”
Patients are given her cell phone number and email address for easy access. She has a reciprocal agreement with Dr. Earl Campazzi — who opened a primary- and urgent care center in the plaza in 2006 — to cover her patients when she is out of town.
Having interacted with Palm Beachers at her practice in Manhattan, Geary understands that islanders expect excellent service. Parents can feel very vulnerable when their children are sick, she said.
“That’s part of my job — delivering attention and care to parents feeling vulnerable. I really enjoy getting to know the family.”
Her staff consists only of a receptionist/administrator at the front desk. Geary performs all the tasks a nurse typically does, such as weighing patients, taking blood pressure and giving vaccinations. Doing so gives her more time with each patient, she said.
Laurel Baker, executive director of the Palm Beach Chamber of Commerce, called the opening of a pediatrics practice in town an added convenience of living here.
“I think it’s a really positive sign that professionals, in particular the medical community, are looking on Palm Beach as a younger town and dispelling the myth that everyone’s old.”
Joyce McLeary, a Realtor with Brown Harris Stevens of Palm Beach, has known Geary for several years.
“What I really love about her is her thorough knowledge of nutrition and how certain food ingredients, especially gluten, can trigger many medical issues,” McLeary said.
For more information, contact Geary at (786) 375-1515.