Valerie Duff is a new family practice physician at Flanner and McBratney, MDs, PA in Leavenworth.

Valerie Duff is a new family practice physician at Flanner and McBratney, MDs, PA in Leavenworth.

1. What influenced your decision to go into family practice and how long have you practiced?
I have been in practice since 2010. I decided to go into Family Practice because I wanted to treat patients at all stages of life; from providing prenatal care to delivery of babies. I wanted to care for toddlers and provide continuous care for adolescents into adulthood. I enjoy the wide range of age groups and variability of Family Practice.

2. After practicing in Indiana and the Kansas City area, what are your initial impressions of the Leavenworth area?
It is a nice town with friendly people. The area has the convenience of a large metropolis close by but doesn't have some of the hassles of the city like traffic.

3. What are the biggest challenges for a family practice doctor in the 21st Century?
The biggest challenges for family practice doctors are finding balance between the clinic and hospital as well as work and family.

4. What are your greatest concerns when working to guarantee optimal health and safety for your patients?
Effective communication is essential to optimizing health. It is also important to listen to the needs of my patients and integrate their concerns into our treatment plan. I view treatment as a collaborative effort to maintain or improve health.

5. What's the most important thing you learned in medical school compared with the most important thing you have learned through hands-on experience as a doctor?
In medical school I learned about diseases and the treatment of said diseases. Since graduating I have learned to incorporate health advice that is applicable to all generations and not just for a specific disease process. While I still treat diseases, my focus has shifted a bit to try to prevent disease and improve overall health starting in the prenatal stage to infancy through adolescents and into adulthood.
— Rimsie McConiga