Carrie Shaffer, DO, joins OurHealth with more than 13 years of medical experience. She earned her doctor of osteopathic medicine in 2001 from Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine and completed her residency training in family medicine at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, Ill. Dr. Shaffer has worked as a family medicine and primary care physician and most recently provided immediate care for St. Mary Medical Center in Hobart, IN. She’ll see patients starting in July at both OurClinic @ Centier and OurClinic @ Valparaiso.
Are you from the Northwest Indiana area?
“I was born and raised on the Southside of Chicago but my grandmother had a summer home here in Valparaiso. When I was teenager, we turned the summer home into our permanent home. I’ve lived in either the Chicago suburbs or Northwest Indiana my entire life.”
Tell us about your family
“I have four children and wouldn’t have it any other way. My husband is a California native and we met in medical school. You’d think someone who was born and raised in California wouldn’t like the Midwest, but he loves it here and never ever considered going back to California.”
Why did you decide to pursue a career in medicine?
“When I went to college, I really liked biology and I thought, ‘Well, this is really interesting stuff,’ and in general I’m kind of a people person. I like to talk. I like to feel like I’m helping people. And my family physician, Dr. Turk, who was here in Northwest Indiana — he was just somebody that I wanted to be like. I remember going to see him as a kid and I thought he had such a nice personality. It always made me feel comfortable and I thought, ‘You know, I can do something like this.’”
What aspects of medicine are you passionate about?
“What I see lacking in America in general and in Northwest Indiana is preventive care. Right now, I’m doing immediate care and I see so many people who aren’t taking care of themselves. I think I’ve come full circle. I’m ready to educate my patients about preventive medicine. I’m all about prevention of the disease. It’s so much easier to take care of patients before they get sick.”
You’ve provided care for Urschel employees in the past, right?
“I’ve been providing immediate care for St. Mary’s for the last five years and they wanted me to see their occupational medicine people for Urschel. I ended up going on a tour of the company and I got to know their employees and I thought, ‘This company is amazing.’ That’s how I found out they were offering this service to their people. I had no idea companies were doing this, the OurHealth model.”
What would you like to say to your new patients?
“I’m excited to come back and help keep these people healthy. That’s really what I want to do. I want to educate them so they can be around for their families and loved ones.”