Women’s Heath & Fertility in Santa Cruz

Women's Health & Fertility in Santa Cruz

Women’s Health & Fertility in Santa Cruz

Interview with Dr. Beth Dorsey & Dana Ramsey

I had the honor of interviewing two of the greatest Women’s Health & Fertility practitioners in Santa Cruz; Dr. Beth Dorsey and Dana Ramsey. And I even got a little Botox from Dana after the interview (watch til the end)! They recently became business partners in 2021, and have their individual practices in the same beautiful space in Soquel. These women are inspirational, passionate, and they have been extremely successful in helping women obtain the goal of getting pregnant.

Dr. Beth Dorsey, LAc is the owner of Points for Wellness in Soquel. Points for Wellness is an acupuncture and functional medicine clinic specializing in fertility, pregnancy, and a broad spectrum of hormonal imbalances. In addition to improving reproductive wellness, they focus on many other conditions such as, pain management, gut repair, stress and adrenal dysfunction, and allergies and asthma to promote optimal health. By utilizing Beth’s extensive training in traditional Chinese medicine, functional medicine therapies, and nutrition and lifestyle counseling they are able to treat a wide variety of conditions to help you feel your absolute best!

Dana Ramsey, MSN is a Certified Nurse Midwife and is the owner of Nurture Women’s Health & Fertility in Santa Cruz. Dana has spent the past 15 years helping women find solutions to their gynecology, pregnancy, postpartum, and menopausal challenges. In addition to her Masters in Nursing (with a specialty in Women’s Health And Midwifery) from Yale University. She is based in Santa Cruz and provides holistic reproductive medical services to women and couples. At Nurture Women’s Health and Fertility they offer a specialized and individualized approach to optimizing your health through all the stages of feminine reproductive wellness: menstruation, fertility, pregnancy, postpartum, and menopause.

In addition to both of their private practices, Beth and Dana work collaboratively to expand their knowledge and better serve their patients and the Santa Cruz community.

Interview Transcript:

  • SHEMEIKA: You guys can’t look at me.
  • BETH: Oh, okay. What are we supposed to do?
  • SHEMEIKA: Hi, welcome. I am here with Dana Ramsey and Beth Dorsey who are two co-owners for a health center, Points for Wellness and Nurture, right?
  • DANA: That’s right.
  • SHEMEIKA: Tell us about your practice.
  • BETH: Well, I’m Beth Dorsey and I’m an acupuncturist and…
  • SHEMEIKA: She’s a doctor.
  • BETH: Yes.
  • SHEMEIKA: Dr. Beth
  • BETH: Dr. Beth Dorsey. I am an acupuncturist and functional medicine practitioner. I specialize in, we both specialize in women’s health and fertility, and also digestive health and pain and stress and all the things. But my main passion is working with women who are going through lots of hormonal transitions and just really supporting them and helping them answering all the questions and getting through all the transitions.
  • SHEMEIKA: Dana, tell us about you.
  • DANA: I’m Dana Ramsey. I’m a certified nurse midwife and women’s health practitioner. I’ve been practicing here in Santa Cruz for about 13 years now. Two years ago I left corporate medicine to start my own practice. I am the Western medicine part of our clinic here, with an integrative medicine flare, working mostly with women with fertility, hormonal imbalances, like PCOS and endometriosis, and I do a lot of menopausal work as well.
  • BETH: Basically Dana and I have known each other over the years. Obviously, she worked at PAMF and I worked at my private practice and have referred to each other over the years. And I’ve always heard so many amazing things about Dana. And so actually, when I was getting my doctorate for Chinese medicine, I ended up needing to do some shadowing hours with a biomedical practitioner. So I immediately reached out to Dana, who had started her own practice and what she was starting, I was like, “Yes, we need that in this community.” And so I made sure that we got together. And when we did we just hit it off. And then when we were talking, it was just like, “It’d be so amazing if we could practice together.” And at that time, it wasn’t quite the right time. But then a few months later, we came together and it was the perfect time. And we both just jumped in with both feet.
  • DANA: Yeah. And then the universe just took over and doors just started to open. And I couldn’t be more pleased to collaborate with such a brilliant woman and such just a wonderful spirit. And we share a lot of patients. So patients who come to me that have never tried acupuncture are now afforded the opportunity, in the same office, to get acupuncture and Chinese medicine. And patients who maybe haven’t gone the Western medicine route yet with their journey are able to see us. And we’re able to collaborate really easily and seamlessly to get them the best care and the best outcome.
  • SHEMEIKA: But I didn’t know that it was you. She said I have a surprise in the works. And then the announcement, I think on Facebook or something I was like, “WTF. You and Dana?”
  • BETH: I know, I think we just hadn’t opened our doors yet and everything. And all the, you know, we hadn’t done all the details. All the things yet. Almost one year. June 1st will be one year. Which has just flown by.
  • SHEMEIKA: We have to have an anniversary party.
  • BETH: I know we still, due to COVID haven’t even had the Grand Opening.
  • SHEMEIKA: Oh, your grand opening.
  • BETH: Yeah, we haven’t had our ribbon cutting. We haven’t done all the things.
  • DANA: Yes!
  • SHEMEIKA: Can we do ’em?
  • BETH & DANA: Yes.
  • SHEMEIKA: You had mentioned that we need in Santa Cruz’s community something as what Dana does or is doing. Can you elaborate on what it is that we need and what Dana specializes in?
  • BETH: So Dana obviously does women’s health infertility. And the beautiful thing that she does is she offers kind of an in between, between what they can offer here in Santa Cruz for fertility, and then over the hill for IVF. And in my opinion, there’s a good..
  • SHEMEIKA: What’s IVF?
  • BETH: IVF is in vitro fertilization. So there’s an in between. What’s offered here is kind of basic. And then when it gets a little bit more complicated they generally refer people over the hill to PAMF over the hill, but there’s a nice in between. And Dana’s able to offer that where she can help with hormone balancing, but she can also help with some assisted reproductive technologies, like IUI, which is intrauterine inception. She can also, she has all the tools like ultrasounds to really monitor the patients and see how they’re responding to some of the medications. And it’s just so wonderful because it’s just a lot more patient care. So for me, I send patients to Dana that are ready for that next step in fertility. And also with general healthcare, like she can do your regular gynecological exams and care. So when somebody’s ready to just, you know, a lot of people come in, they just wanna get pregnant naturally. But some people need more help and are ready for more help. And that next step is just a natural step to go with Dana.
  • DANA: Yeah. Yeah and I think a lot of my patients who haven’t necessarily taken the step towards integrative medicine or Chinese medicine, I think they aren’t really educated on other things outside of just traditional Western medicine. And so being able to partner with patients with Beth allows them to complement what we’re doing from the Western medicine workup and treatment and allows her to really focus on a lot of the nutrition, a lot of the lifestyle, a lot of the energy work. And then also add herbs into the picture.
  • BETH: Yes. And then Dana can also offer more of a thorough Western medicine, you know, diagnostics, and really together we can just really help them achieve their goals.
  • DANA: Yeah.
  • SHEMEIKA: That’s really cool. So what would you say is your biggest win together as, like, Triplets?
  • DANA: Well, we’ve had a lot of success with patients getting pregnant.
  • BETH: Yes.
  • DANA: I love practicing collaboratively with other providers and Beth has been just a dream to collaborate with. I feel like we connect really well with patients. And so our patients are looking to have that connection straight off the bat. And so that’s really nice ’cause we do that nicely. But we’re able to take a different approach that’s just complementary to what each of our specialties are. And so it really gives a holistic and well-rounded, you know, plan, for these patients who are dealing with something that’s hard. And between Beth and myself, we are able to really address all the aspects of health that they need. And if they need to go on to further care ’cause that definitely does happen sometimes. We’re able to support them through those big decisions that they need to make, here locally, where they live. And so that makes it, I think really helpful.
  • BETH: Yes. And oftentimes we’ll have a patient and they have some questions that they need answered that might be, they might be seeing me at the time, but that question really is for Dana. Or they’re newly pregnant or something, you know, something that we need to figure out. And it’s nice ’cause we can, we can easily, I can generally pop over and ask Dana a question and we can help them right then and there together. And so they just really, really feel cared for.
  • SHEMEIKA: I think that’s really cool that you guys are able to kind of calm your patients and give them that support.
  • DANA: Yeah. I mean, I think that in addition to doing, specializing in fertility, we also have, like a big toolbox for helping women in other hormonal journeys. So a lot of our patients are perimenopausal in those late thirties, early forties, where they’re just experiencing a lot of ups and downs. And I think, you know, they also need some extra TLC. Around that time because, you know the teens and the decade of the forties are both really, can be really challenging hormonal times.
  • SHEMEIKA: How did you get into this line of work?
  • DANA: So I was very young right out of undergrad. And I went off to Yale University where I got my master’s in nursing with a specialty in women’s health in midwifery. And so I was delivering babies in my late twenties.
  • SHEMEIKA: Whoa.
  • DANA: I know. I was pretty driven. Between Kaiser and the Palo Alto Medical Foundation and a couple private practices along the way, I really was able to pick and choose what about those practices or those foundations really was helpful to patients and what was not helpful. And so in my nearly 20-year career, as a midwife, putting this clinic together and really kind of cherry picking all of the things that I knew would make women feel more supported, would make them feel more comfortable. Beth and I were able to integrate into this clinic.
  • SHEMEIKA: That’s cool. Are you still delivering babies?
  • DANA: I’m not delivering babies right now. So that was one thing that I did give up two years ago when I left the Palo Alto Medical Foundation.
  • SHEMEIKA: Do you miss it?
  • DANA: I miss the connection with patients and seeing them over a long period of time but I really realized that I needed to sleep more.
  • SHEMEIKA: Oh yeah.
  • DANA: Yeah, I had not slept in 15 years.
  • SHEMEIKA: Oh wow, Dana.
  • DANA: And so the last two years have been amazing.
  • SHEMEIKA: Welcome to the world.
  • DANA: ‘Cause I haven’t slept since I was about 25.
  • SHEMEIKA: Wow. Wow. You’re gonna need some support.
  • DANA: Yeah. Exactly, yes.
  • BETH: Well yeah, yeah Yeah. We gotta get you in.
  • DANA: We do.
  • BETH: Basically, I was living in Tahoe. I used to be a massage therapist and then, Jeff my husband, compound fractured his femur skiing. And so he started going and he had all this recovery to do and then he was going to go have another surgery for it which they wanted to do a bone graft. And he had been getting acupuncture and getting a lot of acupuncture and right in his pre-op he said, “I want you to go ahead and do another x-ray and make sure that I actually need the surgery.” And the doc was like, “You need it.” And he’s like, “Just do the x-ray.” And he did it and he’s like, “You’re good to go. You can leave.” I got to see how powerful it was. And so I knew I wanted to do more than just massage. And so I was looking and I liked working on pain. And I liked working on athletes up there. And so the thing that drew me to acupuncture was that you could do internal medicine and do pain. So I was like, cool. I can do my pain stuff. But then I’m really intrigued with the herbs and the internal medicine component. And then when I was in school, I read the book “The Infertility Cure” by Randine Lewis, and then I was hooked on women’s health and hormones.
  • SHEMEIKA: So how do you seamlessly integrate herbs with acupuncture?
  • BETH: It kind of depends on the case and Chinese medicine is all about getting after the root cause. And it’s all about finding the root and balance. And a lot of the diagnosing is through feeling the pulse and looking at the tongue. So once you find your Chinese medical diagnosis, then you can apply an herbal formula slash remedy to that and if you keep working on that constitutional imbalance the symptoms start to go away. Whereas, Western medicine can be a more of a symptom based approach. Like, okay. You have this symptom, let me give you this med. But when you peel that back and if the root imbalance is still there, then nothing’s really been fixed.
  • DANA: It’s more of a bandaid.
  • BETH: It’s more of a bandaid. Yeah. Whatever’s been bothering the person’s alleviated temporarily. But I do a lot in the fertility because I do a lot with certain phases of their cycles. If they’re in the follicular phase, or the luteal phase, or on their periods, there’s a lot of different formulas that I like to use.
  • SHEMEIKA: Has there been one experience or treatment that you’re just like, holy cow I can’t believe that that worked. That just like, kind of was surprising.
  • BETH: A lot of times in that menopausal phase, people come in and they are miserable. They’re like at their wits end, they are miserable. They are not sleeping. They feel like crap and they’re just feel terrible. And so I’m like, okay here. And I feel like too, if we can get people into that parasympathetic, relaxed mode, then they can heal.
  • DANA: It’s true.
  • BETH: The body’s designed to heal itself. I’m just here to help facilitate that. So by putting the needles into people, it helps get them in, and then leave them for quiet for half an hour. I mean, I’m literally kind of like, fill you up. Let’s resource you, so that you can function.Sometimes when these women come in that are miserable and I give them some herbs, I give them some acupuncture and I’m like, you know?
  • SHEMEIKA: Super scientific.
  • BETH: And, you know, a lot of them but recently, one’s like “I feel so much better.” And it was some simple things. You know, some herbs, maybe some supplements, some lifestyle suggestions, they had the bandwidth to do it. They did it. Not everybody does the things.
  • SHEMEIKA: Yeah, the action.
  • BETH: She did it. She was motivated and she’s like, “It’s actually unbelievable to me.”
  • SHEMEIKA: Wow.
  • BETH: And every once in a while I’m like, “Oh, sometimes it is to me too.” You know?
  • DANA: Women are such caretakers to their family. And so I think when they come here they feel really cared for and wrapped around. And I think it’s looking at the whole person and sometimes it’s just meeting with Beth or meeting with me and it just turns a switch and they go, “Yeah, I need to take care of this. And I need to get to the root cause and put myself as a priority.”
  • BETH: Yeah, and Dana spends an hour. I mean her initial visits are an entire hour and there’s not, that’s unheard of.
  • SHEMEIKA: Like talking, like asking questions, taking charts, doing physical?
  • DANA: Yeah, I basically spend 45 minutes to an hour with every single patient.
  • SHEMEIKA: That’s incredible.
  • DANA: Throughout the day, so I went from seeing about 20 patients a day in corporate medicine to seeing eight.
  • SHEMEIKA: Wow.
  • DANA: And it is so enjoyable to offer that kind of a care ’cause you really can get beyond just the surface problems and throwing band aids at problems and really get to the root cause. And about four years ago I did integrative medicine training. And so I really got to understand how important getting to the root of the root cause of problems is. That’s where I think her and I shine really well, ’cause we talk the same talk. And we have the same goals. And so we can work together.
  • BETH: The biggest win has been Dana.
  • SHEMEIKA: Aww.
  • BETH: Like, I swear to God. Like we.. have there been any challenges? No. Not Really.
  • SHEMEIKA: It was like the universe just kept opening up doors. It was like, this is where you’re meant to be.
  • DANA: It did. It really did.I couldn’t have ever wished upon a better person to do this with. And even a year and a half into it. Like, I wholeheartedly, could not have picked a better person. And we hadn’t met until like the middle of the first year of the pandemic. So it’s not like we had been buddy buddy, we had shared patients.
  • SHEMEIKA: It gives me goosebumps.
  • BETH: Yeah. But we didn’t know each other.
  • DANA: We met up at Blue Ball park on a foggy day with our beanies and our cup of tea and we kind of just clicked. And we had a bunch of patients in common. And over like the course of about, I don’t know, four or five months, we just started to talk more and this kind of blossomed.
  • SHEMEIKA: I just got the chills. That’s so cool.
  • BETH: Well I know. And then even before we got in here, we would get together and we would talk about all these things we needed to figure out, all these topics, all the hard conversations. Long walks. And at the end we were just like, “Cool, we got that.” And it just works. And it still does.
  • DANA: It still does. And any challenge that we’ve had, it will work itself out. And so I don’t feel like there has been a lot of challenges, I mean. That’s like, what Beth says. It’s gonna work itself out.
  • BETH: It’s workoutable. And so we have Dr. Zandra Amato, she’s a chiropractor and she’s been in practice forever. Her and I used to share a practice down the street and she’s amazing. And we’re so happy that she joined us here. And then we also have two wonderful massage therapists. And they’ve been amazing. And so that’s been really great ’cause people can kind of come here and get all the things that they’re looking for.
  • DANA: Yeah. We also do aesthetics. So we do medical aesthetics. So for women who want to do skincare, Botox, resurfacing, we have that available as well.
  • BETH: And all of this to say that this isn’t like a us against Western medicine or anything like that.
  • DANA: No.
  • BETH: ‘Cause everybody who, ’cause we love to work very collaboratively with all the other OBGYNs and midwives in town and they do…
  • SHEMEIKA: It’s add-in. It’s extra. That’s not working, let’s try this.
  • BETH: Yeah, exactly. Yes, that’s right. That’s right. Absolutely. I’ve never ever think that my medicine is the only medicine.
  • DANA: Exactly, yeah. There’s many different ways to provide care and we just offer one way. But all of the ways are valuable.
  • DANA: Yeah, it’s really nice to be surrounded by women practitioners here. I think it really does make a difference to be caring for women by women.
  • BETH: Yeah. It feels really good to be working with a lot of other just strong, smart, successful, entrepreneurial women.



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