NewsPolk County


Reliance Medical Centers introducing Wellbeing Advisors to their patients

Posted at 2:34 PM, Aug 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-18 15:52:37-04

LAKELAND — Doctors will tell you mental and physical health go hand in hand, yet when it comes to getting treatment, the two are often separated. Reliance Medical Centers is trying to combine all aspects of a patient’s health under one umbrella in one location.

“This has been a challenging time for all of us but especially people who already struggle with illness, depression, anxiety, stress, grief,” said Penne Williams, a Wellbeing Advisor with Reliance Medical Centers.

Reliance Medical Centers is trying to flawlessly transition those patients from a routine doctor’s visit, into a visit with a licensed wellbeing advisor, just like Williams.

“They come to see their primary care physician and they can see a therapist to get counseling at the same place,” said Williams.

Williams said one of the biggest issues among seniors is accepting that it’s ok to seek treatment for emotional, mental or behavioral health.

“If people say, ‘well ok my doctor thinks this is important than this must really be important,’ and I think overall this chips away that stigma that society has,” said Williams.

Reliance doctors, like Dr. Carlos Romero, are working directly with the wellbeing advisors, so when the patient arrives all three parties are on the same page.

“We are able to leverage them and tell them and explain to them the importance of having that service so they are open and they accept that,” said Romero.

“When they see that the therapist is right here within the same walls as the doctor I think they feel more comfortable sharing, more comfortable getting help and receiving help,” said Williams.

Reliance says the program has really blossomed during the pandemic and they are proud to be addressing all aspects of health care.

“You can’t address the physical component of wellness without addressing the emotional component of wellness, they are both intertwined,” said Williams.

Reliance Medical Centers is located in Lakeland and Winter Haven. For more information on their services go to