"I was trained in Western ways, but I wanted to learn from traditional healers," explains [Danielle Behn Smith], who studied medicine at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario and completed her family practice training at the University of Manitoba's Rural Medicine program. "I had just finished my locum on the West Coast and I was a bit disillusioned with my family practice training. It wasn't what I wanted. Something was missing," explains the 29-year-old. "I'd been taught how to diagnose and treat medical illness. I know all of the medications to prescribe and the lifestyle changes to recommend. What I hadn't learned is how to help empower people to fight disease using their own traditions.Behn Smith is convinced that the future of healing lies in combining both Western medicine and traditional therapies, and believes that what she's learned from traditional healers has made her a better doctor. "I've had some really positive response from my patients in Dawson City. People are interested in approaching health care in a different way. They're happy that I'm open to traditional ways of healing."Although the show producers bill her as a "medicine woman," Behn Smith hesitates to describe herself that way. "I'm just Danielle," she replies.
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