Dr. Walker has a special interest in informatics – the collection and interpretation of data to improve health outcomes and delivery of care. This integrates well with the practice of teledermatology and her efforts to increase efficiency for patients with skin-care concerns.
“I’m always interested in identifying which patients do better, which medications work for them, and why,” she says. “In addition to providing treatment for individual patients, I want to know how we can make our entire population healthier – and how can we do it in a cost-effective way.”
Although teledermatology has existed for years, Dr. Walker says recent advances in technology have made it much more practical as a way to improve patient care.
“Teledermatology increases access to specialized care for patients in remote regions or underserved urban areas – anywhere there are long wait times or few doctors. When care teams from specialty centers and regional facilities work together, service can be of exceptional quality,” she comments, adding that DirectDerm enables physicians and patients to “see” each other with convenience because they don’t have to be online at the same time.
“The skin offers a window to what’s going on in the rest of the body, and I like the challenge of trying to determine the source of a skin disease,” says Dr. Walker, adding that she finds special satisfaction in detecting potentially deadly diseases, such as melanoma, at an early, treatable stage.
She also likes to help patients prevent problems by teaching them how to care for their skin.
“Good skin care requires daily effort – cleaning with a gentle cleanser, protecting from the sun, wind and elements, and moisturizing for hydration,” she says.
When Dr. Walker isn’t seeing patients in her San Francisco practice or teleconsulting with DirectDerm patients, she enjoys swimming, reading, cooking and quilting.
Medical Degree – University of Missouri, Columbia Medical School.
Residency (Dermatology and Pediatrics) – University of California at San Francisco.
Certified – The American Board of Dermatology.
Fellow – American Academy of Dermatology.
Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society
Doris Duke Clinical Research Fellowship
Personalized medicine and outcomes measurement.