Amy is one half of our Certified Functional Medicine team and a big part of helping make Charlotte a healthier city. She’s an addict for endurance sports and escaped from, Alcatraz! Get to know Dr. Amy Fletcher in this Thriver Spotlight
What’s your name?
What is your superpower at Thrive?
I’m an Ironman under that white coat!
Why did you choose the field of Medicine
My interest in pursuing medicine initially started while doing a college internship with a cardiac rehab program in Dallas TX. I was focused on the exercise physiology and rehab part at the time along with educating patients and participating in the programs they provided. I became even more interested in prevention after seeing the increasing number of patients of all ages impacted by cardiovascular disease. One day I wa s able to view an open heart surgery and recall thinking there had to be more we could do to avoid such drastic yet lifesaving measures. At the time, Dean Ornish was just presenting data on lifestyle habits and heart disease prevention. I had a part-time job as well at the Cooper Clinic in Dallas – a preventative health care clinic that had amazing fitness and wellness services. It was such an amazing environment – nothing like that in CLT!
I suppose I felt some sort of calling at that time to pursue a medical degree. I initially started my career in Ob/Gyn with a goal to provide comprehensive women’s health. I spent the first half of my career focusing in part on bringing health new life into this world. The second phase of my career is really focused on optimizing health and vitality for every age and fostering healthy aging. wellness is a priority. I left a very successful career doing Ob/Gyn. I still miss aspects of this, particularly the obstetrics minus the night call. And I miss the surgery element. Most physicians in this field stop obstetrics at some point in their career and I always felt that doing office gynecology was not going to be the way I ended my career. I longed to find a way where I could merge my passion for prevention, wellness, integrative medicine, and my traditional training into one. It didn’t exist in the area – so I had to take a leap of faith and build it with the help of my partner. We both believed in the practice model which helped us stay committed to our vision and goal.
What is your Education
Med School – Wake Forest School of Medicine; Residency: Carolinas Medical Center, Charlotte
What’s so special about Thrive?
There is nothing else like Thrive in the area! We had spent several years looking at various practice models around the country and talking with colleagues from Integrative and Functional medicine practices to solidify our plans. Thrive is a healing environment and offers many options for all kinds of patients. While we do individual consults and traditional visits, we also offer educational programs to the public for low to no cost. Our goal is to create a wellness community that fosters knowledge and em powers all individuals towards healthier lifestyles. We are also the only practice in the Charlotte area with 2 certified Functional Medicine providers
Where did you grow up?
Any Activities/Hobbies outside of Thrive?
My main hobby/activity is participating in endurance sports. I love to spend time with my family, cook, travel, anything outdoors, and love to play the piano when I have time. have completed 22 marathons, 6 Ironman, 9 half ironman, Escape from Alcatraz, long course triathlon worlds and multiple other races. And this is all AFTER someone suggested I wouldn’t have time to train if I went to medical school. It ’ s all about fueling your passion.
If you could recommend one thing to someone new coming to thrive it would be?
We strive to provide a healing environment where patients have a voice in their health care. We offer longer visits which provide more time to foster the doctor-patient relationship and truly hear the patient’s story. We really focus on your history. It is said that 80 % of the patient diagnosis is in the history – not sure why the medical profession has quit listening to the patients. Hard to get that in a 7-minute visit!
What is your definition of Functional Medicine?
Functional Medicine strives to get to the root cause of disease. It challenges the 21st-century medical industry status quo with innovative and personalized care Integrative and Functional medicine strives to put the health, healing and the human experience back in medicine. They bridge the gap between Eastern and Western medicine that allows optimal patient healing.
The best part about an appointment? What is the best piece of information you could give to a new patient?
Empowering patients to take charge of their health. **Don’t settle for poor health.** The reality is that >80% of chronic disease can be prevented by changes in lifestyle and healthier diets. Patients just need the tools and support to make this happen.
What’s on your Netflix Que?
Game Changers and other documentaries
Dog Kisses on the mouth
What does Jordan do that annoys you?
He has horrible penmanship!
What’s your favorite class at Thrive? Why?
Need to go with Food is Medicine! We often take it for granted that we can heal many of our ills with what we put in our bodies! I’m also in love with Suzanne’s yoga classes!
If you could have one Super Power, what would it be?
Slow the aging process
Do you believe pineapple should be on pizza? (Gluten-Free, of course)