These profiles are part of a series introducing our physician advisory board from Swedish Covenant Hospital to all of our members. This is an opportunity to get to know our board of doctors and better understand their care philosophies.

Dr. Andy Sagan is a pediatrician at Swedish Covenant Hospital and medical director of Swedish Covenant Medical Group Pediatrics. He and his partner, Dr. Nisha Vijay, offer patients a full-service, primary pediatric office for children up to age 18.

What is your practice philosophy?
I take a very practical approach to pediatrics because I have found that most childhood health concerns have practical solutions. I encourage parents to learn about their child’s development, establish routines, be resourceful and work toward effective parenting strategies. My goal is to help parents feel capable and successful by setting reasonable expectations and giving useful, sensible advice for any concern that may arise.

What can you offer Swedish Covenant Hospital patients?
In our office we focus on two jobs: caring for parents and caring for patients. For the kids we provide evidence-based, thoughtful, thorough care, addressing their health needs throughout their childhood, especially in times of illness and injury. For the parents, we not only strive to allay their concerns, but also to guide them through their child’s development.

What is your favorite part of your job?
I like working with the kids. I enjoy interacting with them and helping them feel better. I embrace the challenges of working with their moods, energy levels and playfulness. I also enjoy working with parents who are motivated, resourceful and eager to learn about their child’s health and good parenting strategies.

What is an interesting fact about you?
I am an avid cook — maybe even a “foodie.” I also have a number of hobbies, including keeping reptiles as pets — which the kids love!

For more information, call 773-989-1667 or visit his profile.
On the wall next to the door of Dr. Rusalina Mincu's office hangs a sign that describes one of her main philosophies: Laughter has no foreign accent.

Mincu, who speaks four languages, said she believes laughter is the best medicine — and this philosophy is apparent in her bubbly personality and infectious love of life.

Mincu practices internal medicine and is part of the Swedish Covenant Medical Group. Her care philosophy focuses on integrating alternative medicine treatments with the latest medical practices and technology.

“I have a passion for learning about and applying to my life, my family and my patients, the added benefits of herbal treatment, home remedies, homeopathic treatments, and good nutrition,” she said. “I think good nutrition is the base of a healthy lifestyle together with exercise.”

Mincu’s interest in alternative medicine began when she was in medical school in Romania. “Having studied in a country that was not as technologically advanced as the United States or the western civilized countries, a lot of people would rely on old remedies passed along in the families,” she said.

Mincu’s desire to integrate old remedies with western medicine grew when she visited China, where Tai Chi and herbal medicines are a regular part of everyday life. She began to study the Qigong, an ancient Chinese healing practice.

“My dream has been, ever since I was in residency, to integrate the values of the old world with the new world in medicine,” she said.

Mincu is confident that SCH, which has a long-held philosophy of treating the “whole patient — mind, body, spirit,” provides the right environment for her to create the integrative practice she has always dreamed of.

Mincu said she enjoys the balance of offering her patients great medicine, surgical services and advanced technologies at SCH while also incorporating modalities that people might not be aware of — or never thought might be helpful — such as acupuncture, Reiki and clinical massage offered at Galter LifeCenter.

Mincu also encourages her patients to join Galter LifeCenter's Fundamental Fitness program, in which nutrition, mind/body relaxation and goal-setting are key components.

“My hope is that the more people attend this program, the more the seeds will be planted so that they can actually start doing something actively,” she said. “It takes two to tango. It is not only the physician who can undo something that was done.”

For Mincu, one of the most rewarding parts of her job is when patients experience “ah-ha” moments, or realizations that they can take control of their own lives.

“The moment when they tell you that they tried, and they succeeded, for me is a reward,” she said. When she is not in the office, Dr. Mincu enjoys reading, attending theatrical productions and traveling with her family. The mother of two daughters, ages 13 and 16, has taken many road trips with her family including a trip along Route 66 last year that totaled about 5,800 miles.

For more information call 773-275-1020 or visit her profile. 

"My life has changed since I joined Galter LifeCenter because I'm more physically active." - Lou