South Carolina Center for Integrative Medicine exists as an option for patients that want a different health care experience. Our appointments are longer than most are used to because we want to work with you to figure out how we can reach your health goals. We're not just here to give you a prescription to cure what ails you, we're here to figure out why you are not feeling well and then work out what steps we can take to get you to where you want to be. It might not be easy but the rewards are worth it! We look forward to helping you on your journey to health. Please take a moment to read the stories of our practitioners below.
KIMBERLY SHIRK, PA-C
Kim is a wife and mother to 4 adorable girls. From as young as she can remember she’s always wanted to work in healthcare. At age five she was fixated on becoming a doctor. While pursuing her Bachelor’s degree in Biology at Marist College she decided that becoming a Physician Assistant would allow her to spend more time with her patients and help them address their health needs. Kim went on from Marist to get her Master’s degree in Physician Assistant Sciences from Saint Francis University. Kim has been practicing as a Physician Assistant in the traditional medical setting in both ENT and Pediatric Urgent Care since 2008. She became interested in holistic/nutritional medicine when she became pregnant with her second daughter. During this time she also began to realize that there was something missing in main stream medicine, a large piece of the puzzle that was failing to get people well. When the planned homebirth of her first daughter resulted in a hospital delivery four weeks early due to her water breaking, she knew her body was lacking the nutrients it needed to carry her baby full term. Kim was determined to have a natural, unmedicated homebirth with her second daughter. She began a personally tailored clinical nutrition program under a Nutrition Response Testing practitioner very early in her pregnancy and had an easy, full term pregnancy and the homebirth she so desired.
Kim has also seen the dramatic results a functional medicine approach can have first hand on her husband. When Kim’s husband suffered from back pain and left leg numbness due to an injury that resulted in a bulging disk in his spine, he sought out the care of a holistic practitioner. After being on his own unique clinical nutrition program and making some dietary changes not only did his back pain and leg numbness resolve, but he began to lose weight and feel better than he has in years. Kim is continuously amazed at how quickly her patients feel better, look healthier, and recover from illnesses.
Dr. Meshia Waleh graduated from Boston University School of Medicine in 2008 and from Duke University's Family Medicine Residency Training Program in 2011. After graduating from Duke, Dr. Waleh pursued medical missions in Honduras and then taught at the University of South Carolina Department of Family and Preventative Medicine in Columbia, SC. She has a tremendous heart for the well-being of her patients and for the medically under-served both here and abroad. She is a fantastic asset to our staff. Currently, Dr. Waleh is not accepting new patients.
DEBORAH HOLLAND, WHNP, CNM
I have committed my life to meeting the needs of women for the last 30 years by working as a Labor and Delivery Nurse, a Women's Health Nurse Practitioner and a Certified Nurse Midwife. All of these contribute to a powerful track record of providing exceptional care in the area of Women's Health.
My inspiration to care for women's needs began after the birth of my oldest child. The personal and attentive care from the staff exceeded my expectations and influenced me to seek enrollment at Georgia Southern University where I received the Bachelors of Science Degree in Nursing. I then began my career at the East Georgia Regional Medical Center, serving as a labor and delivery nurse for over 20 years.
After witnessing my sister giving birth with the assistance of a Nurse Midwife in the comfort of her own home, I was inspired to pursue a degree as a Certified Nurse Midwife and Women's Health Nurse Practitioner from Frontier Nurse Midwifery School while also pursuing a Master's of Science degree in Nursing from Case Western University. I've spent the last ten years of my career mastering my skills in order to meet and exceed the needs of women at Lexington Women's Care in Lexington, SC.
After 30 years, I have decided to bring all of my experience and incorporate it with holistic and natural options that are available here at the South Carolina Center for Integrative Medicine. I am prepared to help you address weight loss, depression, anxiety, premenopausal and menopausal symptoms and help you improve your quality of life as well as helping with all of your gynecological health needs. I'm excited about utilizing the tools and options that we have at SCCIM to help put the decisions about your optimal health back were it belongs, with you! I'm excited to work with you on your journey to health.
KRISTYN Leonard, CLC
I'm Kristyn Leonard, Certified Lactation Counselor and mother of three.
My breastfeeding journey began in 2007 with the birth of my first son. He was a struggle, and the wonderful IBCLC in the hospital, Holly, stood by my side through going back to work full time at 8 weeks postpartum, months of sore nipples (from what I would learn 8 years later was an un-diagnosed tongue tie), mastitis, thrush, and a dramatic drop in supply at 4 months old when I took medication I shouldn't have. My goal was to exclusively breastfeed for 6 months before introducing complementary foods and continue until the age of 1. In the end I was able to meet my goals and we nursed for 15 months despite all our challenges. Her support inspired me with a desire to help and support other mothers the way she had supported me.
In 2012 I became a Certified Lactation Counselor as the first step towards my goal of becoming an IBCLC. The plan was to be in a position to go back to work when my daughter, born in 2010, started school. But as life usually goes, my plan didn't work out quite the way I thought it would; and rather than sending my kids to school so I could work, we started homeschooling in 2013.
My journey took yet another unexpected turn in 2015 with the birth of my youngest son. I noticed immediately in the hospital that something wasn't right with his suck, but was unsure of the cause, it could have been a lot of things that early on. At 6 days old he was diagnosed with a tongue tie and lip tie that we had revised when he was 10 days old. The experience of having a child with a tie, going through the revision process, and seeing the lack of resources in our area fueled the drive I now have to not only increase resources, but be a part of the solution for tongue tied babies in the greater Columbia area.
I started Columbia Lactation Care in 2015 to do my part in providing resources and solutions to mothers in our community who are struggling with breastfeeding for whatever reason.
My goal now is to be your Holly. To help and support you in meeting YOUR personal breastfeeding goals, whatever those may be. A week, a month, a year or three; it doesn't matter to me what your goal is. Only that you are able to overcome any obstacle set in your path and meet it. And maybe somewhere down the line, someone will remember me the way I still remember her.