Jennifer Bordenca, PA

Medical Education: MCPHS University

Physician Assistant

Jennifer started her career as an RN and later decided to become an advanced practitioner. “I felt I would get more satisfaction by being able to provide a higher level of care for my patients as a physician assistant. I really enjoy diagnosing, treating, and being directly responsible for the management of my patient’s care.”

Jennifer enjoys working in the urgent care field because every day is different. “I really enjoy the fast-paced environment here and the variety of care,” she explains. “Plus I get to do procedures which I really enjoy. When people come here for care they often have an acute need and I enjoy helping them and making an impact. I like that every day is different and you never know what to expect.”

Jennifer tries to approach and treat every patient as if they were a member of her own family. “I always acknowledge patient issues and work to make them feel at ease while providing as much compassion as I can.”

In her spare time Jennifer enjoys traveling and trying new restaurants with her husband. She also enjoys hiking, walking her dogs and being with extended family. She also loves reading and spending summer weekends in New Hampshire.

Kristen Burke, DNP

Medical Education: UMass Amherst

Nurse Practitioner

Kristen’s medical career began as a medic in the US Army many years ago. Since that time, she has continued to advance her career in medicine. “I realized that by becoming a nurse practitioner I could provide patients with a higher level of care and care for the entire patient, not just their illness.”

Kristen enjoys working in the fast-paced environment of ReadyMEDSM. “Working here I am able to not just care for people but provide the level of service they need when they are sick or injured,” she explains. “Being able to care for others who are having a bad day makes me happy and hopefully improves their day as well.”

For Kristen, providing care is a team sport. “I believe that’s it important to work closely with the patient to provide the holistic level of care that they deserve. Patients frequently need to talk with someone about what they are experiencing – not just have someone tell them what is happening to them.”

In her spare time Kristen loves to complete DIY projects around the house, read a good book and play with her two dogs.

Jared Aldrich, PA

Medical Education: MCPHS University

Physician Assistant

Jared first became interested in a career in medicine when he was a teenager. “I was in a car accident and that experience helped fuel my interest to work in emergency medicine and as an urgent care provider,” he explains. After gaining some experience as an EMT Jared decided to pursue becoming an advanced practitioner. “I decided I wanted to provide a higher level of care for my patients. I’ve always had a desire and a passion for helping people and working as a physician assistant allows me to fulfill that goal.”

Working in urgent care, Jared enjoys the ability to provide care and reassurance to those who need it the most – and are at their most vulnerable. Jared says that he believes in treating all his patients as if he were treating a loved one. “I try to understand that they are coming to me in a time of need. So I try to recognize that and put people at ease and be as empathetic as possible. Then, I try to treat the physical ailments with my medical knowledge. I believe doing both helps make someone recover more efficiently.”

One of the things that Jared likes the most about working at ReadyMED is that every day is different. “Working here is like solving a new puzzle every day and I love being able to meet and talk with new people,” he explains. In his spare time Jared enjoys being with his wife and family and enjoys camping, fishing, canoeing, and going for walks in the woods.

Allyson Alting, NP

Medical School: UMASS Lowell

Nurse Practitioner

Allyson knew from a very young age that she wanted to be a nurse just like her mother. My mother is a true, big-hearted caregiver and a huge role model for me.” she explains. My father was also important in encouraging me to continue my education and pushing me to be the best I could be in my field.” 

Trained as family nurse practitioner, Allyson sees patients of all ages. She started both her registered nurse and nurse practitioner careers in the emergency room. I love working in the outpatient setting and I love helping those who are urgently in need,” she explains. pride myself on offering my patients reassurance, guidance, and also educating them about how to manage their current situation. 

Allyson always approaches each patient with the same compassion regardless of their problem“I believe each patient’s health concern should be validated and investigated appropriately to ensure the patient leaves with appropriate answers, education and follow-up as needed,” she explains. “This, in turn, helps ensure they are satisfied with their care. I love the smile on my patients face as they leave feeling reassured, educated, and more prepared to deal with their current situation. 

Allyson said she struggles with the lack of education patients have about preventative measures, such as proper diet and exercise. We see so many patients with repeated ailments related to their lifestyle choices. If we, as providers, educate people more about preventative health measures and healthier lifestyle choices I am hopeful we can become an overall healthier community.” 

When she is not busy with her patients, Allyson enjoys being with her family. “I love time with my husband out on the motorcycle on sunny days, hikes with our French bulldog Monti, and enjoying some free time with my two younger sisters.” 

Dr. Michael Gaudet

Medical School: UMass Medical School
Residency: Maine Medical Center
Fellowship: UMass Medical School

Physician

Idah Shayo, NP

Medical Education: UMass Medical School

Nurse Practitioner

A graduate of the University of Massachusetts and Fitchburg State College, Idah has assisted patients in a variety of settings during her career, including the cardiac floor of a hospital and also in the mental health field. Idah became an advanced practitioner because she loves working with people and using her knowledge and experience to help them. In her spare time, Idah enjoys traveling and experiencing other cultures. She especially likes to cook different cuisines from around the world.

Rachel Berkowitz, NP

Medical Education: Regis College

Nurse Practitioner

A graduate of the University of Massachusetts/Amherst and Regis College, Rachel Berkowitz finds her role as a Nurse Practitioner very fulfilling. “I enjoy getting to know people on a personal level, working with others, and learning new things, and being a Nurse Practitioner allows me to do that,” she explains. “It is truly a privilege to do this job.” Rachel thinks that the best care is given when the patient and provider team together to achieve common, realistic goals. “I have always felt that a common sense of respect, acceptance of personal strengths and challenges, and quality listening yield the best health outcomes for my patients. Most importantly, by creating these interactions, an intimate and honest relationship can be fostered.” In her free time, Rachel enjoys trying new types of cuisine. She also loves traveling and exploring new places plus spending time with her husband and English bulldog Bella.

Shaina LaBonte, NP

Master of Science: MCPHS University

Nurse Practitioner

Like many nurse practitioners, Shaina first started her career in medicine as a registered nurse. Back when she was working as an RN at a large teaching hospital, she marveled at the growth of the interns as they progressed through their residency. “One day, I said to myself, ‘Why can’t I do what they’re doing?’ Going to medical school didn’t seem to fit into my life at that point, but working alongside nurse practitioners and physician assistants made me realize that they were just as competent and experienced as doctors were. It was then I made the decision to become an advanced practitioner so I could continue to help patients and families in a more advanced role.”

Shaina is board-certified in Family Medicine and has a strong interest and background in Emergency Medicine, which is a great asset to her at ReadyMED. “Having an FNP degree has allowed me to assess, diagnose, and treat patients of all ages and stages of life,” she explains. “In addition, working in emergency medicine and urgent care has allowed me to deal with almost every type of patient problem and perform procedures in a quick, fast-paced environment.”

When treating her patients, Shaina never forgets that she is caring for someone’s loved one. “I always make a point to treat every patient with the kind of respect and care I would want for my own family and friends,” she explains. “Medicine is both an art and a science. Time and experience have shaped what we know as the medicine of today. They help to guide us in the right direction when caring for patients. But, dealing with people who are vulnerable and coming to you in a time of need requires empathy, listening, and support that must be tailored to each individual.”

In her spare time Shaina enjoys being outdoors, hiking, traveling, yoga, and experiencing life through the eyes of her two amazing daughters.

Erin Froio, NP

Medical Education: Regis College & University of Rochester

Nurse Practitioner

Erin Froio decided to become an Orthopedic Nurse Practitioner because she wanted to expand her education and knowledge in the field of orthopedics. “I have spent my professional life enjoying and continuously learning about orthopedics. I chose this area because I feel that by appropriately treating a patient’s orthopedic issues it allows them to be active, which benefits all areas of their overall health,” she explains. “It’s really satisfying to be able to help get patients back to the activities they enjoy in life – no matter at what level that might be.” Erin believes that it is immensely important to listen to patients and decide together with them what the best treatment option will be – whether surgical or non-surgical. “It’s my job to thoroughly examine a patient and educate them as to what their options are.” Working as an Orthopedic Nurse Practitioner, Erin finds each day interesting and enjoys the challenge of the job, including assisting in surgery which she feels has really added to her clinical knowledge. In her spare time Erin enjoys running, hiking – or any activity outside with her three children.

Hoang Trinh, PA

Master of Physician Assistant: Bay Path University

Physician Assistant

A graduate of the University of Connecticut and Bay Path University, Hoang has been practicing as a physician assistant since 2015.

Hoang became interested in becoming a physician assistant during his undergraduate years when he explored the medical field and had the opportunity to shadow a physician assistant (PA). “I admired the respect they received from collaborating physicians, other members of the healthcare team and patients in their communities,” he explains. “Now as a practicing PA, I really appreciate the flexibility to work in different fields of medicine and make impactful positive changes for an individual’s health. In medicine, you truly never stop learning and I have been fortunate to experience that now first hand as a physician assistant.”

Hoang enjoys the challenge of working at ReadyMED, treating many different problems each day. “I believe coming to ReadyMED can save people an unnecessary trip to the ER and help catch an illness before it worsens to the point of hospitalization,” he explains. “I think patients really appreciate the care they receive at ReadyMED.”

Hoang believes the patient is a vital part of the healthcare team. “I think the best outcomes are achieved when everyone listens, understands, and works together. I also enjoy educating patients in the community about taking charge of their preventative health, so they can work to optimize their health as they age.”

In his spare time Hoang enjoys rock climbing, running, hiking, exploring the arts, and spending quality time with family and friends.

Elizabeth O’Neil, NP

Master of Science: Endicott College

Nurse Practitioner

A graduate of Endicott College, Elizabeth started her career as a nurse and became a nurse practitioner in 2017. She likes her expanded role helping patients as an advanced practitioner and enjoys diagnosing and treating a wide array of conditions across the entire lifespan. Elizabeth has extensive experience in burn, trauma and emergency surgery which she gained at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. “I chose to join the ReadyMED team because I enjoyed the fast-paced environment of trauma and knew that working in urgent care would be a great fit for me,” she explains.

Elizabeth says that what she loves the most about being a nurse practitioner is being able to provide patients with the high quality medical care they deserve. “Being a nurse allows me to view the patient as a ‘whole’ and utilize holistic, non-pharmacological treatments when appropriate to help patients live their best lives,” she explains. Elizabeth strives to see patients as more than just a diagnosis on paper. “Many times illness becomes present from outside influencing factors in one’s life, i.e.; stress, diet, sleep, lack of exercise, etc.,” she explains. “If we can correct underlying issues patients can achieve optimal outcomes. That’s why I like to take the time to talk with patients and get a proper history. When we get patients to feel comfortable and able to better communicate with their healthcare provider we can often learn valuable information needed to best treat the patient.”

When she is not busy with patients Elizabeth enjoys spending time with her fiancé doing activities such as hiking, skiing and traveling. She also enjoys crafting and DIY projects. Elizabeth is a member of Sigma Theta Tau, the international nursing honor society.

Dr. Linda Ciu

Doctorate: University of Tirana
Residency: Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center & UMASS Memorial Medical Center

Pediatrician

Growing up in Albania, Dr. Linda Ciu’s parents always had a lot of respect for physicians. “My parents weren’t doctors but they always revered physicians and saw medicine as an important profession. I think that influenced me to become a doctor,” she explains. “Now I enjoy helping others using my medical skills and my daughter is also a physician.”

Dr. Ciu spent many years as a pediatrician before becoming a full-time urgent care physician. “I enjoyed helping families with their different needs. Over time, you can become very close. Working with families is a unique part of medicine because parents trust you with the most precious thing they have – their children.”

Although Dr. Ciu spent much of her career as a pediatrician, she enjoys the fast pace of working at ReadyMED. “Urgent care is a unique way to practice because you have to make important decisions about plans of treatment or accessing the gravity of the situation in a short amount of time,” she explains. “When you walk in the door to the exam room you never know what you will see.”

Dr. Ciu really strives to bring the warmth and caring that she fostered in primary care to her work at ReadyMED. “I want to make people as comfortable as possible when they visit. I like the fact that in urgent care you can help people immediately and put them at ease.”

In her spare time, Dr. Ciu enjoys working in the yard, being with friends, and traveling. She also enjoys exercising to stay in shape, including aerobics.

Dr. Margaret McCahan

Doctorate: UMass Medical School
Internship & Residency: UMass Memorial Medical Center

Pediatrician

Dr. Margaret McCahan has worked in both pediatrics and urgent care during her career. Now she enjoys caring for patients at ReadyMED PLUS, one of Reliant’s urgent care offices. “I’ve always enjoyed working in urgent care,” she explains. “You never know what you’ll be treating so you always have to be on your toes. Plus I love the fact that it allows me to use my pediatrics background when I practice.”

Dr. McCahan likes the fact that Reliant’s urgent care facilities can treat so many different conditions and help people avoid going to the emergency room when it’s not necessary. “Both parents often work these days and having urgent care available at a moment’s notice when a child is sick can really make a difference,” she explains. “Parents can also avoid the long wait times that occur when they go to the emergency room. I also like the fact that seeing patients at ReadyMED I have an opportunity to encourage people to visit their primary care doctor to better manage their problems and take their medications.”

In her work Dr. McCahan says that she strives to build a relationship with all the patients that she treats. “Although I may not see the patient that often, I still think you can bond with them and start building a relationship. And if I am treating a child, I strive to establish a good relationship with the parents too, as that’s very important.”

According to Dr. McCahan, electronic medical records have made care a lot easier. “You not only have your patient’s health history and other key information at your fingertips but you can also send a note to their primary care provider telling them how you treated their problem…it’s really a great asset.”

When she is not busy seeing patients, Dr. McCahan enjoys family time with her husband and three sons. She also likes yoga, going to concerts and the theatre, and being outdoors with her Labradoodle. Dr. McCahan also enjoys traveling when she can find the time, and recently visited Ireland with her family.

Dr. Moshina Alom

Medical Education: Umdnj-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
Internship & Residency: UMass Memorial Medical Center

Physician

After teaching algebra for a while after college, Dr. Mohsina Alom realized more than ever that medicine was the career for her. “The main reason I went into pediatrics is that I love working with kids,” she explains. “Teaching helped me realize that it would be great to help kids in a different ways, which is why I decided to go to medical school and become a pediatrician.”

In her work, Dr. Alom always makes a point to understand the patient’s point of view. “I think empathy goes a long way when working with patients and that really helps them open up to you. I think the fact that here we really listen to our patients is one reason our patients come back to us and why they appreciate us so much.”

Dr. Alom works in Pediatric Urgent Care, which provides services to patients after-hours and on weekends. When she sees a patient, it is often for the first time. This is one of the reasons she enjoys using Reliant Medical Group’s electronic medical record (EMR) so much. “Being able to access a patient’s medical record instantly really assists us in so many ways. Because of the EMR, I have access to the patient’s full chart, and that really helps with diagnosis.”

One of the issues that Dr. Alom and other physicians deal with is the fact that patients often want to make their own diagnosis using information that they have found on the Internet. “It’s great that patients feel empowered to do research but there is so much information out there that you can easily come across inaccurate information, so in many ways it is a double-edge sword. As a doctor, I try to make sure my patients are as informed as possible about everything that is affecting their health.”

In her free time Dr. Alom is an avid traveler and enjoys taking trips to New York and New Jersey as well as Virginia Beach and other areas. Dr. Alom also enjoys cooking and baking and trying out new recipes.

Dr. Karen Ekwueme

Internship & Residency: Cook County Hospital
Doctorate: University of Illinois at Chicago

Physician

Although she originally started her career practicing in primary care, Dr. Karen Ekwueme is very happy to be seeing patients at ReadyMED. “One of the reasons I like urgent care is that it gives me a chance to interface with people who don’t always go to see their primary care physician,” she explains. “However, this gives me an opportunity to plant a seed in their mind about taking better care of their health and seeing their primary care provider more.”

Dr. Ekwueme is a big believer in partnering with her patients to ensure they receive care that’s right for them. “I think it’s important to understand what patients really want from their visit as opposed to just identifying a problem and telling them all about it. For instance, someone may come into the clinic because they have hypertension. Listening to them you may learn that the real reason they have high blood pressure is because they are having relationship problems and it’s causing stress. The more you know about people the better you are able to treat them.”

One of the things that Dr. Ekwueme enjoys the most about her job is connecting with patients. “I enjoy hearing stories from patients, and giving them a place that they can feel at ease with someone to confide in.” Dr. Ekwueme has long been interested in patient-centered care. She completed a fellowship in Integrative Medicine and is in the process of getting certification from the Institute for Functional Medicine. “Integrative medicine is an approach to care that revolves around the patient and addresses the full range of physical, emotional, social, spiritual and environmental influences that affect a person’s health,” she explains. “Functional medicine takes a whole body approach to care and incorporates lifestyle choices, disease prevention, as well as patient-centered treatment.”

When she is not busy helping patients, Dr. Ekwueme enjoys Chicago-style stepping, a traditional African-American ballroom style partner-dance. In addition, in the winter she likes to snowshoe and in the warmer months she likes to hike, kayak and horseback ride. Dr. Ekwueme also enjoys cooking, growing herbs and traveling.