Palm Coast, FL – Interviewing Erika Equizi for a position in a chiropractor’s office in the Daytona area years ago, Marijo St. Laurent Dean, better known as “MJ” knew there was something about Equizi that made her an excellent candidate for taking care of people.
Fast-forward to 2021.
The friends and longtime business colleagues welcomed guests to Dr. Equizi’s new practice, Premier Chiropractic, a boutique chiropractic clinic in Palm Coast, last week.
As a woman-owned business, Equizi says it’s been a warm reception from local businesses in the area and networking groups have been welcoming, attending her grand opening ribbon cutting on Thursday and family-friendly brunch and open house on Saturday.
“It’s amazing to be able to do it and with such a great community behind us. We’re a new business here and we’ve already met so many people. It’s been so great. People care here,” said Equizi.
You Do What?
It’s not your typical doctor’s office when you walk in. When they say family-friendly atmosphere it’s not just a catchphrase.
Equizi and Dean’s own children had a hand in painting the office located in Palm Coast’s City Marketplace and helped design the children’s area where even the youngest patients or visitors can remain entertained while adults visit the doctor.
Yes, you read that right. Even the youngest patients.
“I stared in the field after I was pregnant with my first son eight years ago. I needed a chiropractor. I went and saw one, realized what it is and what it can do for you, and it’s not just back pain adjustments. I looked into it a little further, I was a vet tech at the time, and I always knew I wanted to be a bit more in life so I applied to chiropractic school. I started as a single mom with an eight month old baby,” shared Equizi.
“I went through my doctorate program and that’s where I found pediatric chiropractic. I fell in love with how much it can do for children, how it can change their lives – no colic, no ear infections, no constant antibiotics when they’re being adjusted and letting the body do what it’s supposed to do, so I said this is what I need to do. I specialize in prenatal and pediatric chiropractic because of it,” she said.
Extensively trained through the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association, Equizi beams when talking about helping the youngest of patients feel their best.
“That’s why you see all of the children here and how welcoming we are to the children here,” she said. “It’s all about bring your family here and don’t stress.”
But Wait, There’s More
In addition to prenatal and pediatric chiropractic services, Premier Chiropractic provides an array of services that include assessment and recovery support after a motor vehicle accident, which comes with it’s own set of challenges.
“When you get in a car accident you have 14 days to be seen by either a chiropractor or a medical doctor in order for your auto insurance to cover you for any medical treatments,” explains Dean, a licensed massage therapist, who also serves as the clinic’s director of operations.
“As long as you get seen within 14 days, you can wait after that, even if you’re saying you’re not hurt right now, and then you end up feeling the pain in a couple of weeks, then you’ll be covered. Otherwise it will have to go under your health insurance or self-pay,” she said.
“Most of the time, whiplash it will take three or four weeks before you even feel it because your body kind of goes into shock and your fascia armors up, and then you ‘thaw’, if I can call it that way. Then you go ‘oh my gosh I need treatment’ and then it’s too late according to the law, unfortunately.”
Equizi says they have treated countless patients involved in auto accidents over the years.
“(We) have for five years, solely done car accident care and we’re very knowledgeable and experienced in that field,” she said, during a tour of the rehabilitation therapy room.
“We do a lot of physical therapy work with patients to get you back to where you were before the accident happened. Heal and rehabilitate after injuries. We do sports injuries as well.”
A Match Made At Work
For Equizi, it’s been years of hard work that are paying off in more ways than one. Setting an example for not only other women who dream of owning a business, she’s showing her own children that with hard work and a good circle of friends, anything is possible.
“I set myself to it. This whole time I said I want my own office, and here I am,” said Equizi, who began her career in Gainesville.
“I’ve been all around and I’m like it was meant to be. You always end up where you’re supposed to and meet the people you’re supposed to. (MJ) interviewed me for my first job in Daytona, and here we are. We met for a reason.”
It’s a team effort to run the business with Dean overseeing operations and continuing to provide massage therapy while Equizi serves patients in need of chiropractic services.
Dean too worked her way up in the medical field, starting as a massage therapist before transitioning to office manager, and learning the skills to oversee daily operations.
“I did the billing and wanted to better myself so I went back to school for medical billing and coding, then grew, helping open more clinics in Florida, becoming the VP of Operations,” she said.
“This year we got together, went for a walk and decided to follow our heart and open this together,” said Dean.
“Erika is an amazing chiropractor. I’ve worked with a dozen of them and she’s hands on, she’s human, she’s really good.”
As they grow the business by offering chiropractic services, medical massages, auto accident and sports injury care and rehabilitation, their mission is clear.
“Let’s make you feel better and get you to a better state of health and wellness for yourself, your family and the kids.”
160 Cypress Point Parkway, Suite A113
Palm Coast, FL 32164
Featured Photo: HT Production Co.