About Us
  • About Us
  • Mission Statement
  • Why an Internist?
  • What is a DO?
  • Advanced Care Practitioners
As of January 1, 2018, Thunderbird Internal Medicine and six other Valley practices will partner with Summit Health Management (SHM) to form Summit Medical Group Arizona.

Summit Medical Group has been operating in New Jersey since 1929 and has recently expanded nationally to form new organizations in Arizona and Oregon. Summit Medical Group in New Jersey is the largest and oldest physician-owned multispecialty medical practice in the New York/New Jersey area and is among the largest in the country. It is under the management of Summit Health Management, a professional management firm that provides essential services to ensure seamless medical group management in a patient-centric model.
Thunderbird Internal Medicine Summit Medical Group Arizona is a group of physicians and allied health care professionals devoted to promoting life-long health by providing premier person-centric medical care, preventive health services, support services and easier access to vital information.

Internal medicine physicians diagnose, prevent and treat common, complex and chronic adult conditions. By choosing an internist as your primary care doctor, you can feel secure in the knowledge that you have a partner who will take the time to develop a long-term relationship with you and understand your unique history. This extensive understanding of you as an individual enables us to design a complete care plan which will enhance your ability to lead a long and healthy life.
What is a DO?

Of the more than 20 physicians at Thunderbird IM, some are Medical Doctors (MDs) while others are Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine (DOs).

Both DOs and MDs:
  • Are trained and licensed to care for patients and prescribe medication.
  • Utilize scientifically-accepted methods of diagnosis and treatment.
  • Have identical premedical pathways and complete four years of medical school and a residency program.
  • Are licensed to practice all phases of medicine.

The Osteopathic Approach
Osteopathic physicians aim to have the whole body working together instead of targeting an illness or physical complaint as a lone deficiency. Within their unique approach to patient care, osteopathic physicians are trained to:
  • Teach patients how to prevent illness and injury by maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
  • Look at the whole person to reach a diagnosis without focusing just on symptoms.
  • Help the body to heal itself.
  • Believe that all parts of the body work together and influence one another.
DOs are also specially trained in the nervous system and the musculoskeletal system (muscles and bones).

Patient Choice

Informed patients are better able to choose a physician based on the philosophical differences practiced by the two schools of medicine. However, the most important characteristic of any doctor is the care given to patients. All Thunderbird IM physicians share our patient-centered care philosophy…no matter which letters follow their names!
When you schedule an appointment at Thunderbird Internal Medicine Summit Medical Group Arizona you may be seen by an Advanced Care Practitioner: a Nurse Practitioner (NP) or a Physician’s Assistant (PA).

Both NPs and PAs:
  • Are trained and licensed to care for patients and prescribe medication.
  • Can assist in performing surgery.
  • Can conduct physical exams, diagnose and treat illness.
  • Can order and interpret tests and offer patient counseling.
Nurse Practitioner:

A nurse practitioner begins as a registered nurse and must earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing, take the NCLEX-RN exam, and also have a certain number of clinical hours before continuing on to become a nurse practitioner. They then move on to attain a higher level of education and are required to be certified. NPs typically have approximately 10 years of prior experience and follow a patient-centered model in which they focus on disease prevention and health education.

Physician’s Assistant:

A physician’s assistant usually begins in some area of healthcare such as an EMT, paramedic, lab tech, nurse, etc. They are also required to take specific courses and have a certain number of patient contact hours before entering a PA program. The Physician Assistant graduate programs have the same stringent requirements to prepare a person for the certification exam. PAs work with and are overseen by physicians.

At Thunderbird Internal Medicine Summit Medical Group Arizona, our Advanced Care Practitioners take pride in providing the best possible care with the same patient-centered care philosophy.