Dr. Amit Parikh,
Chief medical officer, Bend Health
In medical school, Dr. Amit Parikh originally wanted to be an orthopedic surgeon. But after finding he preferred a clinical setting to the operating room, Parikh followed in his father’s footsteps and became a psychiatrist.
He also didn't intend on working with children but changed his mind during his fellowship. Today, he serves as chief medical officer at Bend Health, a pediatric mental healthcare provider.
“Keep an open mind and life will guide you the right way,” Parikh said.
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At Madison, Wisconsin-based Bend Health, Parikh leads a team of over 70 practitioners. He's responsible for the design and implementation of the company's digital-based care model to assess young patients and their mental health needs.
Parikh hopes for a day when giving children mental health tools or resources early on will become the norm and help prevent them from developing depression or anxiety later in life.
“With behavioral health, we kind of wait until [mental illness] is actually there, and then we start giving you the treatment,” Parikh said. “But we need to start doing this way earlier and that takes a whole system change … which I think is starting to happen slowly.”
In addition to his work at Bend Health, Parikh operates a Substack called Two Docs and a Stack with his brother, a fellow psychiatrist. The two write about psychiatry, mental health, wellness and digital health and offer their perspectives on how the next generation of physician leaders will tackle behavioral health.