10 Questions with ... Dr. Kipp Van Camp
April 24, 2012
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
Nine years of post medical school education, three different Board Certifications; practiced family medicine in Weston, Missouri; completed residency in diagnostic radiology at Oklahoma State University in Tulsa, followed by a fellowship in interventional radiology at Washington Hospital Center in Washington, DC; co-owner of radiology practices in Kansas City, Missouri and Topeka, Kansas; owner and Medical Director of Rejuvenate Medical Spa; adjunct professor at Washburn University and the University of Kansas; Medical Director of Precise Clinical Research; public speaker and author.
1. What brought you from your practice to doing radio? What led you to do a radio show?
Twenty years ago when I started the practice of medicine, I said one day to my wife, "someday, I would like to host a medical radio show." It took nearly two decades for the opportunity to present itself, but when it ultimately did, I jumped at the chance. I always believed radio was a unique medium where I could reach a large number of people, and provide an educational show that was up-to-date and entertaining. My twenty years of practice have prepared me for nearly every topic and medical question. The show provides the listeners with an open, approachable forum to have their questions answered.
2. When you get callers and listeners who you know are likely to be on the wrong path to health -- eat too much, eat poorly, don't exercise -- what should be the first step they can take to get well? What should they do every day to start themselves on the road to better health?
We all have ways that we can make ourselves healthier and happier. For anyone who is struggling to get through the challenges and difficulties of life each day, and for those same people who say I'm just too tired at the end of my busy day to add another activity like exercise to my schedule, I challenge this person that adding 30 minutes of walking for days a week would actually improve their energy level. But in actuality, it's a riddle. The extra effort provides you with more energy. In essence, you can't afford to not exercise.
3. One of the roadblocks to wellness in some people's minds is the health insurance situation, whether it's poor coverage from an employer-arranged plan, wildly expensive individual coverage, or no coverage at all. What, if anything, as a physician, do you think should be done about this? Do you foresee health coverage as a problem that persists, something that will be solved in the foreseeable future... and what will the consequences be if a solution isn't found?
First off, Obamacare isn't the answer, as the government and media have told us. The answer to affordable coverage must begin with tort reform. However, we will never engage in an honest discussion about this for many reasons, of which one is that Congress is made up of over 40% of attorneys and this is a topic they refuse to discuss. Secondly, the only way I see to make health insurance affordable is to offer a basic level of care that covers patient's routine medical needs; like primary physical examination, routine milestone care such as mammograms, PSH screenings, colonoscopies and baseline labs. The patients and families should be given tax breaks and financial incentives to purchase various insurance plans. Finally, instead of saying this is the lowest amount that the government or tax payer will cover, the government should say any catastrophic medical treatment above a certain ceiling (such as $250,000 or $500,000) will be covered.
4. What differences are there between your show and other medical shows on radio and TV -- what do you bring to the table to differentiate yourself from other "doctor shows"?
My show is educational, like all the medical shows I have heard. However, Doctor's Orders is entertaining as well. We have fun. The show takes a fresh and new look at tired and old medical topics. My vast knowledge in Family Medicine, Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology and Cosmetic Medicine afford me a unique understanding of nearly all topics. My years of family medicine including literally hours of patient care enabled me to develop excellent communication skills in which I take difficult medical topics & jargon and make it easily understood in everyday vernacular.
5. There's more information, accurate or not, good or bad, about health and medicine available to the average consumer than ever before. Everyone races to the web to look up every symptom. Do you see this as a good or bad thing, and what do you advise listeners about seeking information about health issues? What should they be looking out for, or be aware of, when Googling whatever ails them?
Education and awareness is always a good thing. I do not have a problem with patients looking up medical topics or ailments on the internet. It use to be grandma who had all the answers. When I practiced general obstetrics, a patient would come into my office and say "my grandma says the baby is a boy," or "grandma says the baby is breach." More times than not, grandmas were wrong, so when looking up information on the web, just understand from where the information is coming. Stick with reputable sites like Web MD or Mayo Clinic. Beware that grandma's and wives' tales are on the internet, too. Ultimately, trust your doctor when you seek their advice. Don't take what Web MD says over your doctor. A professional, face to face opinion, with a reputable, qualified physician still remains the best source for information.
6. Who have been your mentors and inspirations in your career?
My dad is a retired veterinarian. He was the one who first got me interested in science and medicine. I'd say I'd decided a career in medicine because of my father. The second most influential doctor was our local general practitioner. He mentored me and allowed me to shadow him and observe firsthand what a people doctor did. Because of him I first became a family physician.
7. You do some cosmetic procedures, like Botox, at your medical spa. What are the right reasons for someone to do cosmetic procedures? Are there wrong reasons?
We all want to feel about how we look and how we age. Botox slows down the effects of aging. It minimizes the natural wrinkles of the skin. Whenever a person becomes obsessed with the way they look and finds they are not satisfied with the results it has approached an unhealthy level. A good measuring stick is this: every patient must ask themselves if they can do with or without the procedure. Sure, you'd like to do it, but if you can't get to it for a few months, this is a healthy attitude regarding cosmetic procedures. Conversely, if you can't do without the procedure it's probably boarding upon an unhealthy obsession.
8. Of what are you most proud?
I left a group practice several years ago. I went out on my own and entered solo practice. Many, if not all of my colleagues expected and even hoped I would fail on my own. Instead, not only did I succeed, I thrived. My practice grew. I even found time and effort to complete several things that I had always wanted to do. Like write a book, start a radio show, and still participate in coaching for my son's sport activities. And have a quality home life with my wife and sons. I am most proud that I had the inner strength and courage to succeed in the face of doubt, adversity and difficult odds.
9. Fill in the blank: I can't make it through the day without ________________.
...a diet Mountain Dew. Excepting that, I would be remiss if I didn't say that I am grateful for my family, my abilities and my health. This is only possible because God has granted me these blessings.
10. What's the most important lesson you've learned in your career?
Winston Churchill said, "Never, never, never, never, never give up." Even when it looks impossible, it probably isn't. When a difficult case seems impossible to treat successfully, keep looking at the case from all angles, there is always an answer. It may take much time and great effort, but don't give up. Not only does that apply to medicine but all of life.