Holistic Health

Thompson is bringing vital services to a community in need.


Illustration by Peter James Field

On East Henry Avenue in Tampa, Florida, there sits a pale green house, a seemingly breezy residence, which is actually a health services nonprofit called Dr. Traci’s House. In 2020, Traci Thompson ’00 founded this space — which offers medical services and holistic offerings like yoga — after changes in her job forced her to take a sabbatical from her executive role in medical management. 

“During that time, I was able to figure out what is it that I wanted to do with the next phase of my life,” says Thompson. “Dr. Traci’s House is focusing on providing a space for those with and without insurance to be able to address their medical, behavioral health and social conditions in a more comprehensive and collaborative manner.” The nonprofit is funded by community contributions and several grants, and has served more than 600 families on site.

For years, Thompson — who today balances her role as CEO of Dr. Traci’s House with her full-time position at Humana Healthy Horizons, where she is regional vice president of health services and chief medical officer — dreamed of opening a holistic medical nonprofit that serves a community similar to the one in Poolesville, Maryland, her hometown. In this area of Tampa, the median household income is about $14,000 less than the state average. Research shows that people who live in impoverished neighborhoods experience more health complications. For her business plan, Thompson, who has an M.B.A. from Howard University, gathered data like this, including statistics from local hospitals, to understand the community’s needs.

She also drew on personal experience. In 2013, Thompson’s younger brother, Billy, then 35, died from complications related to diabetes. “He didn’t have health insurance and couldn’t afford to get his insulin,” says Thompson, who established an endowed scholarship at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in her and Billy’s names. “Dr. Traci’s House provides an avenue for those who may be outside of their ability to afford medication and educates them on their condition and how to best manage it.”

Thompson has also created a culture in which staff members treat their patients like extended family. “People see health care providers who look like them and come from their neighborhood, and they are able to have their thoughts and feelings be heard,” she says. “That’s my biggest