Above all else, a practicing physician aims to provide patient-focused care to the best of their ability. As a specialist in physical medicine & rehabilitation, Dr. Kevin Caserta utilizes his medical knowledge and experiences with adaptive techniques and strategies to help patients suffering from many medical conditions to regain confidence and reach their goals. Caserta joined the Summit Pacific Medical staff in May of 2022 with a clinical interest in neurorehabilitation, including care of people with disabilities associated with conditions such as multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injuries, ALS, balance disorders, traumatic brain injury, and stroke. He holds a Medical Doctorate from The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Executive Masters of Business from Seattle University and is Board Certified with the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.
Caserta focuses on comprehensive care, addressing emotional and social challenges facing patients in addition to their medical conditions. “One example of a patient I see includes someone who recently suffered a stroke,” he explains. “This can cause paralysis, depression, and spasticity (very tight muscles) as well as memory and speech difficulties. My role in this situation is to get to know the patient, understanding not just their medical conditions, but their social situation, potential support, and goals. We then design a rehabilitation program to maximize each person’s ability to regain function.”
Caserta emphasizes the importance of the entire healthcare team, working closely with a patient’s primary care provider, physical and occupational therapists, and many others. While his specialization is in neurorehabilitation, he also cares for patients with chronic conditions such as diabetes and obesity, providing guidance on lifestyle modifications to improve their health and quality of life. “There’s no greater satisfaction than watching people be able to return to the things they love,” expresses Caserta. “It’s very cool to see someone buy in to their health and make significant changes like shedding weight they’ve struggled to lose or reducing their insulin dosage.”
Summit Pacific’s Population Health Promotes Healthy Living
In addition to direct patient care, Caserta serves as Senior Medical Director of Population Health for Summit Pacific Medical Center. This position tasks him and a team of medical professionals with creating the infrastructure and programs to fulfill Summit Pacific’s vision of creating the healthiest community in the nation. Essentially, this role creates programs that help improve the overall quality of a patient’s experience, making things easier for providers and ultimately decreasing cost of care.
Caserta comes to Summit Pacific Medical Center with 12 years of executive healthcare experience, including serving as Chief Medical Officer for Providence Centralia and St. Peter Hospitals and Site Administrator of Providence Centralia Hospital. Through those experiences, he developed a passion for rural health, quality, and sustainable, patient-centered healthcare. While he thoroughly enjoyed his career, the hospitals, and fellow coworkers, Caserta was unable to see patients for several years due to his significant administrative responsibilities. He feels very blessed to have a role which combines his passion for direct patient care with the ability to still serve in an administrative capacity.
One of the programs that Caserta has already helped develop in his time at Summit Pacific is Summit Care. Designed for patients with diabetes, obesity, and other medical conditions, Summit Care works with participants to develop a personalized health action plan, focusing on exercise, dietary programs, and other activities. The program also assists patients with chronic health conditions to try and live a healthier lifestyle in a safe and productive course. “As the Senior Medical Director of Population Health,” states Caserta, “I get the pleasure of working with our amazing Population Health Team, which is currently comprised of 13 staff members, and we are still growing. Many patients with Summit Care also see me clinically, so there’s overlap where I get the opportunity to know them and their goals on another level.”
Overall, Caserta’s move to Summit Pacific has been an overwhelmingly positive career shift. “I love the team here at Summit. From the clinicians to the administrative staff and everyone in between, we have an incredibly collaborative environment. Working with patients again and helping people solve their problems, whether it be a diagnosis or how they can do something differently to make a positive impact, is what motivates me.” When not at work, he can be found spending time with his family, gardening, and performing in and writing plays for his local church.
To learn more about the subspecialty area of physical medicine & rehabilitation, also called physiatry, visit the Summit Pacific Medical Center Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation webpage.
“The good physician treats the disease; the great physician treats the patient who has the disease.” – William Osler