Caring From the Heart
How one EvergreenHealth physician's support changed a patient's outlook on women's care
For many women, facing a hysterectomy is a life-altering decision. For Rowlanda Cawthon, Ed.D., that was no different. But when her first consultation at a different health system left her feeling unwelcome, she decided to look elsewhere for care.
She was referred to Dr. Anthony Tagavilla, an OB/GYN with EvergreenHealth Obstetrics and Gynecology Care, but she was admittedly unsure what to expect.
"I'll be honest: I had reservations because he is a man," Cawthon said. "But since day one, Dr. Tagavilla broke down my biases."
Dr. Tagavilla made a point to understand Cawthon's medical and personal history. During their conversations, he often illustrated what he observed—drawing what would happen during the procedure, giving Cawthon the opportunity to visualize her procedure's intricacies.
"It's important to me to meet my patients at their level of understanding and to never rush them to a decision, especially one that involves surgery," Dr. Tagavilla shared. "I always want my patients to have time to think about the decision and ask me any questions. Afterall, we're partners in care."
Before her procedure, Cawthon and Dr. Tagavilla met one last time.
"What I valued most is that he said, 'Sister, if you wake up the morning of your surgery and you feel like this is not going to work for you, don't hesitate to call me and cancel. It's a life-changing decision—physically, mentally and spiritually. You need to take the time to work through it,'" Cawthon said.
Together, they opted for a minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery, allowing for an easier path to recovery.
"He doesn't just listen with his ears; he listens with his heart, and he's one of those rare people who truly understands your experience," Cawthon said. "This is what women need: to feel that there's a genuine concern for our well-being – and Dr. Tagavilla exemplifies that."
If you're interested in learning more about Dr. Tagavilla and EvergreenHealth Obstetrics and Gynecology Care, visit www.evergreenhealth.com/health-services/pregnancy-birth/obgyn/obgyn-coral.
The EvergreenHealth Nurse Navigator & Health line can also help you find a physician who meets your needs for specialty, location and insurance. We can even assist in scheduling your first appointment. Call (425) 899-3000 and press 1 at the prompt.