Organizational Unit: Medical Providers

Alicia Portillo, PA-C

I joined Unity Care NW in 2022.

I have a BS in Biology from the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma WA, and a Master in Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) from Northern Arizona University at the Phoenix Biomedical Campus.

My background includes working as a US Peace Corps health volunteer in Mozambique, and partnering with the International Center for AIDS Care and Treatment Programs (ICAP) to enroll and improve upon HIV treatment. After PA school, I was a study clinician at the Johns Hopkins Center for American Indian Health (CAIH) in the Southwest, working on phase 3 clinical trials in partnership with IHS, followed by working at Planned Parenthood Los Angeles.

My interests include mountaineering, backpacking, and environmentalism. Se habla español. I enjoy working in community health because it gives me the opportunity to provide accessible care and be a resource to underserved populations. It’s also rewarding to be in a position to help address barriers to healthcare that an individual may be experiencing.

 

Lareina Albertson, ARNP

I received my Bachelors degree in Nursing from Oregon Health Sciences University, and my Masters degree in Nursing from the University of New Mexico.

I specialize in family medicine, with interests in women’s health, gender affirming care (including hormone replacement therapy), and STI testing and prevention (including PrEP).

I enjoy spending time with family and our dog, camping, hiking, and exploring.

Community health care has always been an interest of mine. I grew up in a rural community, and understand the barriers underserved communities face in accessing quality healthcare. Through my work at Unity Care NW,  I strive to provide high-quality, easily accessible, and culturally competent care to all individuals with medical needs.

Anne Slater, ARNP

I graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a Bachelors degree in Nursing in 1985, and an MA in Nursing – Family Nurse Practitioner in 1996.

I enjoy putting my varied experience into practice at Unity Care Northwest. I worked here permanently and then as a fill-in clinician since 1999.

Community health feels like home and especially so here where I have the good fortune to have met so many patients and colleagues. I like working in this setting built on team spirit and the shared goals of providing integrated and accessible medical, dental and behavioral health care to all in our community.

During my time off I enjoy fresh air, music and the company of friends and family.

Frances Jablonski, MD

I joined Unity Care NW in September 2021.

I earned my medical degree from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland, OH, and completed my Family Medicine residency at Long Beach Memorial Medical Center in Long Beach, CA.  While in residency, I helped expand care to include management of PrEP and hormone therapy for trans patients. Upon completion of my residency, I worked as a Physician for Vista Community Clinic,​ a community health center in Vista, CA.  There I managed a large volume of culturally diverse, medically complex patients and worked in their Women’s Center. ​​

I love helping patients take ownership of their health through education, and take my role as an advocate for my patients as my guiding philosophy in medicine!

Katherine Mayer, MD

I started working at Unity Care in 2021.

I received my BA from Western Washington University, and my doctorate in medicine from Temple University School of Medicine in Philadelphia. I completed my residency at Swedish Family Medicine First Hill in Seattle.  I worked at Country Doctor in Seattle for eight years as a Family Medicine Physician, performing obstetrics, and providing HIV care, gender affirming care and addiction recovery care.

I feel my role as a family physician is to work with my patients on becoming healthy and whole so that they can in turn focus on caring for their families and friends, helping them to be healthy and whole as well. I enjoy caring for whole families through all stages of life – from newborn care to elder care. Se habla español.

L Antrim Caskey, RDN

I hail from from Baltimore, MD and joined Unity Care NW in September 2019.

Previously I was an independent photojournalist based in New York City specializing in long-form documentary work; my work has been published in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Nature and featured in documentary films including The Last Mountain.

I returned to school in 2016 at the University of Idaho to pursue a career as a Dietitian. Covid restrictions inspired the development of an online nutrition education program, Dietitian Kitchen, a program I host on UCNW’s YouTube page.

I am thrilled to be in a position to share my passion for preparing delicious, nutrient-dense food to help our patients establish healthy habits to last a lifetime.

Angela Taylor, ARNP

I received my Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of British Columbia, and my Master of Nursing in Family Nurse Practitioner studies from the University of Victoria.

I previously worked as a Nurse Practitioner at Mt. Baker Planned Parenthood.  Prior to that, I worked as an RN at Skagit Regional Clinics Urgent Care and Peace Arch Hospital Emergency.

I like meeting patients where they are at, and working together to create a realistic plan of how they can achieve their happiest, healthiest self!

Denise Plaisier, PA-C

My journey with Unity Care Northwest began in October 2020, and is an opportunity for which I’m grateful.  One of the many aspects I appreciate about community health such as UCNW is the diversity and inclusiveness characteristic of this setting.  It means so much to me to be able to express my skills and personality in a place where everyone is welcome and treated with respect and compassion.

Though new to UCNW, I am not new to this type of work.  My husband and I moved here from Michigan in 2003 when I began working as a primary care provider at Sea Mar Community Health Centers for 10 years and then on a nearby Indian reservation for 6 years.  Besides being a healthcare practitioner, other joys in my life include hiking, yoga, cooking, attending retreats for spiritual and personal growth with friends, doing video chats with my godson and spending meaningful time with my husband.  I enjoy an active, well-balanced life of work and play.

 

Muriel Handschy, ARNP

I first came to Unity Care NW (formerly Interfaith Community Health Center) in 1991 as a nurse practitioner student.  After I graduated in 1992 from the University of Washington with my Masters of Nursing, I came back to Unity Care NW and was the third provider employed by the health center.  I previously served as co-Medical Director and Quality Improvement Coordinator at UCNW. I also have experience working at an STD testing and treatment clinic and a Well Child clinic.

Lisa Benjamin, ARNP

I joined UCNW in July 2020. I am excited to work in community health with a team that is committed to providing high quality, accessible, and affordable health care to our community. Building relationships with patients is important to me, and my goal is to empower patients to be the healthiest they can be. I earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of British Columbia, and more recently, a Master of Science in Nursing from Frontier Nursing University, specializing in family practice.  I am a long-time Bellingham resident and previously practiced in a variety of settings with Peacehealth over the past 21 years.