Dr. Frank Arian of Victory Physicians in Palm Springs practices modern medicine in a state-of-the-art office dispensing old-fashioned caring and compassion.
By Ellen Paris
Walk through the front door of Victory Physicians and prepare to be surprised. Victory Physicians houses the country’s largest collection of World War II home front memorabilia, while providing patients personalized immediate and primary medical care by highly skilled healthcare professionals. Dr. Arian’s state-of-the-art facility with extensive diagnostic, screening, and rehabilitation equipment delivered by a rigorously trained staff offers one-stop medical care not found in most immediate or primary care facilities.
Victory Physicians’ historic Palm Springs location is directly across from the former El Mirador — a Palm Springs landmark for the rich and famous. One of Victory’s four buildings served as the post exchange (PX) during the war when the El Mirador was requisitioned as an Army hospital. The hallways, lobby, consultation, diagnostic testing, and treatment rooms are lined floor to ceiling with museum-quality WWII home front memorabilia, circa 1939 to 1945. Dr. Arian’s collection rivals that of the Smithsonian. Everything displayed, from arcade games and magazines to postcards, matchbooks, and figurines, was part of the United States government propaganda effort encouraging civilians to fight the war. Photographs of wartime Palm Springs and local wartime memorabilia are truly fascinating to see.
“I’ve been collecting for 15 years and needed a space to house my collection, so we bought four buildings right across from Desert Regional Medical Center,” jokes Dr. Arian. Truth is, Dr. Arian, a diplomate of the American Board of Family Medicine, has assembled a top-flight medical practice, including an on-site lab, digital X-ray, ultrasound, and echocardiogram to provide a fast yet complete diagnosis and treatment plan.
Examining rooms feature vintage medical furniture ranging from exam tables to surgical cabinets. To relieve inherent stress in a visit to the doctor, waiting patients peruse vintage WWII periodicals like Vanity Fair and the Saturday Evening Post, watch period propaganda films on flat-screen TVs in both the waiting and consultation rooms, and read laminated front-page war headlines while big band and swing music play continuously for patient enjoyment. “So many people of all ages are fascinated by this kind of memorabilia yet never have the chance to see such an extensive collection of it all in one place,” explains Dr. Arian.
Dr. Arian, also a residency-trained emergency physician, offers a list of things he looks for in his own physician, which can help choosing a new physician or evaluating an existing one.
What are things you look for in a doctor?
• Sit down when they take your history?
• Speak to you in language you can understand?
• Tell you your diagnosis?
• Admit when they don’t know the answer?
• Offer to research your questions and concerns?
• Wear a freshly laundered white coat or scrubs?
• Make eye contact while talking to you?
• Ask thoughtful questions and listen thoroughly to your responses?
• Have a kind and caring manner?
• Follow up with you to see how you are feeling after a visit?
• Keep your appointment time?
• Treat your pain adequately?
• Ask if you have further questions or concerns?
• Explain the risks, benefits, and alternatives regarding their treatment plan?
• Explain why they’re ordering tests?
• Explain the pathophysiology of the disease process?
• Have the proper credentials?
• Readily refer you to specialists?
What are the distinguishing features of Victory Physicians that set it apart from other family practices, clinics, and immediate care facilities?
• Impeccably clean, organized and well-stocked facility
• On-site museum and WWII art gallery
• All walk-ins all the time
• On-site digital lab, X-ray, ultrasound, echocardiogram, holter, EKG
• Flat-screen televisions in all exam rooms and waiting rooms
• On-site IV capability
• Electronic medical records
• Patient portal – patient access to personal medical records via Internet
• E-script – state-of-the-art electronic prescriptions to pharmacies
• Seamless admissions to Desert Regional and Eisenhower hospitalist groups
• M.D. speaks Spanish
• On-site physical therapy modalities
• Travel vaccines for worldwide destinations
• Pagers for patients that allow them to leave the building
• On-site dispensing of prescriptions and durable medical equipment
• House calls as necessary
• Office provides CD/DVDs containing X-rays and ultrasounds for personal health records or specialist consultations
• Portable book carts featuring history books for extended visits
What is your personal philosophy on the practice of medicine?
No matter your race, religion, country of origin, or sexual preference, my staff and I will treat you with genuine respect, kindness, and caring. I will preserve your dignity to the best of my ability and your right to make autonomous medical decisions as long as possible.
The less medications the better. Medications are expensive, make drug companies fat, have side effects, and are inconvenient. I am very conservative in this regard. In the same vein, the fewer tests the better. Tests are expensive, inconvenient, at times invasive and painful, and have risks.
The patient is the decision-maker. I view my role as “health security advisor” with the patient being the “president.” As long as the patient has the capacity to make medical decisions, they retain ultimate and final veto power. I render an opinion and make a recommendation based on my training, experience, and interpretation of the data. I provide the patient with the tools that will enable them to make an informed decision. I respect whatever decision the patient makes; and if against my advice, it is merely recorded in the medical record as such.
Very few things about our lives are still private. I believe one of these is our personal medical information. Government, employers, and others in our “village” do not have the right and should not be given the right to have access to your personal medical information without your permission. Confidentiality and discretion are hallmarks of my practice.
What type of quality assurance does your staff undergo?
All Victory medical assistants (MAs) must pass a 100-question exam covering conduct of medical assistants in medical practice and their fund of knowledge. Tests are then reviewed personally with the MA. They must also pass a test of calculations for drawing up medications. MAs are not allowed to touch any medications until they pass with a 100 percent score. They must retake this test and get a perfect score to be signed off by the M.D. every six months. All MAs must be signed off on 10 cases before they are allowed to take pediatric vital signs autonomously. MAs receive continual feedback on their knowledge of equipment, emergency procedures, vital sign technique, privacy laws, patient flow, autoclave technique and other medical matters. All MAs must be CPR certified.
All staff must adhere to strict daily, weekly, and monthly protocols for equipment maintenance, controls, and cleaning of our facility and equipment. All of Victory’s staff trains together on simulated emergencies in our office using an Advanced Cardiac Life Support Dummy.
Victory Physicians is a one-of-a-kind doctor’s office run by a one-of-a-kind doctor, who along with his carefully handpicked staff, can best be described as discrete, caring, and competent.
Frank B. Arian, M.D.
Diplomate, American Board of Family Medicine
1199 N. Indian Canyon Drive
Palm Springs, CA 92262
Office (760) 327-8755
Fax (760) 327-1477
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