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Q&A with Joyce Vista-Wayne, MD
Joyce A. Vista-Wayne, MD, DFAPA

Where you work:
MercyOne Pediatric Neurology and Psychiatry Care

Typical day in your shoes:
Each day that I wake up to is extremely variable with my schedule dictated by the changes in my practice that started 18 months ago. In July of 2019, I transitioned to a practice model that allowed me to scale back on direct patient care responsibilities in order to gain optimal time flexibilities as I started to actively pursue the pilot project management of the Collaborative Care model in delivering pediatric mental health services.  As such, this practice model provides that I render administrative and clinical consultative services as needed.  The timeline for the completion of the CoCM project (which is currently on hiatus as the pandemic has shifted the focus of Mercy on sustaining a balanced and effective COVID-19 response to our patients) will be reset as soon as clinical indicators that the pandemic is under sustained control are evident.  At this time, the bulk of my professional activity is consultative where I render clinical expertise as a peer reviewer for Iowa Total Care/Centene and as a seated physician board member for the Iowa Board of Medicine. Clinically, I see patients as needed to address overflow and bridge visits with their primary prescribing psychiatric providers. Additionally, I continue my physician leadership engagement in organized medicine as a member of the Iowa Medical Society Board of directors serving out the role of Speaker of the Policy setting Forum and also as a member of the Iowa Psychiatric Society Executive Council appointed as chair of the Legislative Committee. 

What inspired you to pursue psychiatry?
Psychiatry was an unexpected unplanned destination.  Prior to immigrating to the US, I was in the second year of a Philippine residency training program in Surgery.  There were family driven barriers to pursue the plan of continuing surgery training in the US.  Intent on practicing medicine nevertheless, I applied for an open residency position in one of three programs in SoCal that did not fill during that year's match - University of CA-Irvine Department of Psychiatry.  It was an incredible training program - a hybrid of biological and psychodynamic psychiatry with a strong internal and neurology background that rounded off my knowledge and expertise in the biomedical sciences.  All my attendings were phenomenal and inspiring.  Then the three-month rotation in CAP happened.  There was no turning back.  I completed the fellowship at Harbor-UCLA.  The rest is history.

What is your favorite part of your job?
Nailing that therapeutic alliance with both patients and families - because after that, success in treatment informed by the correct diagnosis was more than assured.  Also, being able to pick up undiagnosed medical conditions whose symptoms either mimicked/caused/worsened psychiatric symptoms.  It helped affirm my deeply held conviction that first and foremost, I am a medically trained health care professional who also specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of biologically based brain disorders.  I believe that conviction helped draw trust and confidence from my patients.  

Who has inspired you?
During training, both my attendings/supervisors and my rock star senior residents.  During practice, my patients.  The support of my family has motivated me to continue exploring and fulfilling my potentials.

How do you spend your free time?
Responding to emails such as this. Putting that attempt at levity aside - it's catching up and fulfilling shared activities with my husband that had to be put on hold during those years that were taken up by training, then full time medical practice and raising a family at same time without missing a beat.

And that does not include baking banana bread.  Ever.
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Iowa Psychiatric Society
PO Box 30413
Indianapolis, Indiana 46230