New medical practice focusing on seniors opens in Winston-Salem

Mary Vondrasek at the reception desk in the Welcome center at Iora Primary Care.

New medical practice focusing on seniors opens in Winston-Salem
August 29
00:20 2019

By Judie Holcomb-Pack

If you’ve ever complained about the long wait in a doctor’s office, a crowded waiting room, or the feeling that you’re being rushed and your concerns are not being heard, you’re not alone. But all that’s changing now that Iora Primary Care, a new concept in healthcare for seniors, opened its first office on Aug. 28 in the Silas Creek Crossing shopping center. And it’s definitely not your grandma’s doctor’s office.

Eight years ago Rushika Fernandopulle, M.D., co-founded Boston-based startup Iora Health with a goal of developing a better system of healthcare delivery. Today Iora Health has offices in eight states and is opening five new practices in the Triad and Charlotte areas. Iora Primary Care specializes in senior health utilizing an integrated team approach of doctors, health coaches and behavioral health specialists focusing on total care and wellness.

Mary Vondrasek, the clinical team manager for Iora in the Triad, noted that they do not have a “waiting” room, with the emphasis on waiting. Theirs is a comfortable welcome area where you are greeted by a receptionist who sits at a desk, not behind a glass window, with no phones or computer in sight. Complimentary coffee is available at the refreshment station.

To hopefully alleviate the “white coat syndrome,” where a patient’s blood pressure spikes when confronted with a doctor or nurse in a lab coat, all the team members wear casual logo shirts. Their goal is to make each patient feel comfortable and safe in a caring and compassionate environment. Team members, including a health coach and doctor, allot plenty of time to visit with each patient, review their medical and personal history, and listen to their concerns.

Dr. Bryan Stanistreet is the primary physician at the Winston-Salem location. Dr. Stanistreet previously cared for patients at Wake Forest Baptist Health Lexington Medical Center. The practice will treat all types of disease and chronic illness, such as high blood pressure and diabetes management, and has an on-site lab. Doctors are available by phone 24/7.

In addition, they will offer health classes on such topics as diabetes in their community room. In their mission to provide total patient care, all the team members meet each morning in the “huddle room” to discuss each patient’s history, treatment plan and needs to ensure that they have access to the medical care they need. Whether it’s a phone call to check to make sure medications are being taken as prescribed, or arranging transportation to a specialist, the patient’s care team works to develop an individual plan that’s best for each patient. By using the team approach, every team member gets to know them as a person, not a patient.

Vondrasek, who has been a nurse for 16 years, said she became disenchanted with the healthcare system when she was caring for her mother. She joined Iora in 2015 and is passionate about their mission. “Iora is a mission driven organization that seeks to restore humanity to the healthcare system and I get to live that every day.” She added, “I love seniors because they are fascinating, they have such great stories and we want to hear them.”

For more information about Iora Primary Care, visit They are open Monday-Friday 9-5 p.m. and are located at 3274 Silas Creek Pkwy. Their phone number is 336-604-2822. Iora accepts Medicare, UnitedHealthcare, Humana and Blue Cross/Blue Shield Advantage plans.

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