Dr. Walter Lemmo on helping patients with cancer
Dr. Walter Lemmo leads the Lemmo Integrated Cancer Care in Vancouver, which was one of the first naturopathic oncology clinics to open in Canada.
“I have a practice where at times I feel the average age of patients is forty, many with young kids,” reports Dr. Lemmo. “It is not about the glory and the fame, it’s about helping people.”
Operating one of the first naturopathic oncology clinics to open in Canada, Lemmo Integrated Cancer Care in Vancouver, Dr. Lemmo observes that the policies in Canada sometimes do not take overall patients’ health needs into account. “In the US people fly to the best centers and the oncology clinics need to be on top of it. Close to fifty percent have integrated medicine departments.”
Of course, exercise and diet have effects on health outcomes but “I used to get lashings for recommending exercise to cancer patients.” He explains that attitudes are changing. “Now we get referrals from oncologists, hematologists, our colleagues and the community.” Community members include patients, their relatives and those diagnosed with cancer, who report, “Walter, we hear your name everywhere.”
When referring to the role that Boyana Djokic, Lead Pharmacist of York Downs Chemists, plays in his practice, he states, “She is willing to explore innovative approaches at the same time as being safe and cautious. As a doctor, she walks the fine line with you. You have confidence in the quality of what they do making sure it is safe. Whenever there is a new innovative approach, she looks into it, explores it, contacts people and comes up with an equation that works. I have 150% confidence in anything she makes, does or touches.”
“There are obviously a lot more players wanting to join the market,” he adds, “but you are not sure of the quality behind the scenes. We have dealt with other compounders occasionally and there have always been issues that crop up.”
“We have so many procedure-based treatments in our two clinics that we just order nearly everything from York Downs. Many years ago I tried products from other compounding pharmacies and didn’t get the same results with patients.” Dr. Jasmine Hall