Dr. Lasich: Leading the way for quality, wellness-based health care

Dr. Christina Lasich is committed to a healthier community, one that provides access to affordable and quality health care, and focuses on health.

“I have a vision of a community that enjoys physical, mental, emotional and spiritual wellness.” said Dr. Lasich, Chief Medical Officer of Western Sierra Medical Clinic.

In her position, Dr. Lasich oversees health care efforts and the medical staff at Western Sierra. She knows the community, its residents – and many of the patients at Western Sierra Medical Clinic.

After graduating from the University of California, Davis School of Medicine, she returned to the community and established a private practice in 2001. She has also served as the medical director of Community Recovery and Resources (CoRR), a substance abuse treatment and mental health services center in Grass Valley.

“This is where I grew up, it’s my hometown,” said Dr. Lasich, who moved to Nevada County with her parents when she was 5 years old.

And the community benefits from the connection.

Since Dr. Lasich joined Western Sierra, the health care group has added four new centers – Kings Beach (Tahoe), Penn Valley and two in Auburn. The largest nonprofit health care provider in the region has also greatly expanded medical services, including urgent care, an on-site pharmacy and specialists.

Dr. Lasich helped Western Sierra establish a medication-assisted treatment (MAT) program. The MAT program helps residents battling substance abuse, especially opioids such as prescription medications and heroin, a critical and fast-growing epidemic in the region and nationwide.

The MAT program has “been instrumental in saving lives,” said Dr. Lasich, a frequent speaker on substance abuse treatment and pain management at forums sponsored by Stanford University, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and other professional gatherings in the region.

For over two decades, Dr. Lasich has also specialized in treating painful conditions as a rehabilitation expert.  There’s a “lack of knowledge” on the many ways to treat pain, said Dr. Lasich. “People rely on prescription medications because they are so overwhelmed with pain and chase having a pain-free life with pills. But there are a lot of other ways to address pain.”

Acupuncture, chiropractic medicine and numerous other ways, including exercises to strengthen the core and diet to reduce inflammation.

At Western Sierra Medical Clinic, health care providers embrace other options and only turn to prescription medications when needed.

The one-stop, multi-disciplinary aspect of Western Sierra Medical Clinic, where patients have access to not only their primary care provider, but also many other specialty services, has greatly improved the ability to care for the whole person.

“We’ve filled in a lot of gaps and are always looking for more gaps in healthcare to fill.” said Dr. Lasich, ”Our motto is “Better Health Together” and we take the commitment very seriously.”