Skagit Valley Primary Care Providers
Call Us: (360) 336-5658
916 South 3rd Street
Mount Vernon, WA 98273

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Katya Melnik

Family Nurse Practitioner

Languages Spoken:

English, Russian, Ukrainian

Education: Master of Science, Family Nurse Practitioner, University of Cincinnati. Bachelor of Science, Nursing, University of Cincinnati. Bachelor of Arts, Psychology, Western Washington University.

Philosophy of Care:

I was born in Russia and immigrated with my family when I was young. I always knew I wanted a career where I could help people. Once I completed my Bachelor of Arts in psychology degree, I realized that I had a passion for medicine and how the human body works. I went on to become a registered nurse and spent most of my nursing career working in the Emergency Department setting before becoming a Nurse Practitioner.

My passion is working in partnership with patients to empower them to make better choices about their health. I believe that everyone should be equipped with the right information to be able to participate in shared decision-making.

At home I love to spend time with my four children and my husband. We love to travel places as a family, go camping, fishing and be involved in our local church.

Alina Ostapchuk

Family Nurse Practitioner

Languages Spoken:

English, Russian, Ukrainian

Education: Doctor of Nursing Practice, Family Nurse Practitioner from University of Washington; Bachelor of Science in Nursing from University of Washington. Board certified by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.

Philosophy of care: I was born prematurely in a small town in Ukraine. My mother became very ill and did not have access to proper healthcare.  Soon it was too late, she died three days after I was born. Because of this background my interest and passion for medicine began in early childhood. I immigrated to America as a child and my passion continued to grow through the years; in high school I took elective healthcare classes, then became a nursing assistant and then a nurse.

From the beginning I felt honored to work with patients one on one and to share the joys of their lives but also the difficult moments.  I decided to become a nurse practitioner because I feel that this role blends what I love most about nursing – the advocacy for people, patient teaching, patient-centeredness, and what I love about medicine-making the diagnosis, finding the root-cause of a problem, and providing evidence based treatment. I love being a family nurse practitioner because I get to care for people of all ages and develop relationships with their family.

I am passionate about preventing disease. I am very excited to think that deliberate and timely intervention during early years can prevent poor health in the future. What is special about my practice is that my goal is to understand what is important to the patient and be their mentor to help them reach the optimal health they want.  I want to be there for the patient and help in any way I can.

I have three children and a very supportive husband. On my downtime some of the things I enjoy are spending time outdoors, attending church, baking, and cooking with my toddlers, gardening, snowboarding, and camping.

Allison Berglin

Family Nurse Practitioner

Education: University of Michigan Master of Science (MS) Family Nurse Practitioner; University of Michigan Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). Board Certified as a Family Nurse Practitioner by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.

Philosophy of Care: First as a nurse and then as a nurse practitioner I have worked in a variety of settings with patients young to old from every walk of life. While in nursing school, I worked in an assisted living facility with geriatric patients as well as a personal care aide for a pediatric patient with severe medical and behavioral issues. As a new nursing school graduate, I first worked in nursing research and then at a large University Health System on a medical surgical unit. While there were parts of each of these roles that were special to me, I found that the most rewarding aspect was working with patients and families to educate and empower them in their own healthcare. With my heart set on primary care and family practice, I chose to return for graduate work to expand my scope of practice as a Family Nurse Practitioner.

In my practice, I love to get to know patients and their families and partner with them to provide holistic, person-centered care. I believe that everyone deserves a healthcare provider who will listen and work with them to achieve their best health. I enjoy educating patients and helping them choose an optimal treatment plan for their individual needs and health goals. On a personal level, I love the challenge of every day being different and continually learning new ways to care for my patients.

I moved to Skagit Valley in 2015 to be closer to family and being a Midwesterner, fell in love with the beauty of the PNW (Mountains!). I first came to know the staff at Skagit Family Health when my daughter was born in 2018 at the Birth Center and I am excited to join such a caring and dedicated team. When I’m not working, I enjoy spending time with my husband, daughter and two dogs. I like being outside, cooking, reading and travel.


Seth Cowan

Family Nurse Practitioner

Education: Bachelor of Arts, Zoology, University of Washington; MSN, Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Seattle University; Doctorate of Naturopathic Medicine, Bastyr University.

Philosophy of care: While studying zoology at UW I recognized that a career in health care would allow me to combine my interest in science with enjoyment of working closely with people.  I became interested in complementary and alternative medicine after my undergraduate studies and enrolled in the Doctorate of Naturopathic Medicine program at Bastyr University.  There, I met my wife and future practice partner Michelle Antonich.  We opened our practice in Mt. Vernon in 2001 and though I appreciated the role that natural medicine provided to our patients, I felt somewhat limited in my ability to meet the spectrum of patient health needs. Therefore, I returned to school and earned my masters as a Primary Care Nurse Practitioner.

The combination of being a family nurse practitioner with naturopathic training has allowed me to integrate the two approaches to better meet the unique health care needs of my patients.  I enjoy seeing patients of all ages and especially enjoy caring for, and establishing a long term relationship with the entire family.  I believe in working with patients to determine the underlying cause of illness and deciding what makes each person well.  I am a strong believer in preventative medicine and encourage patients to actively participate in their own health care.

When not working, I like working on home and yard projects, biking, running, hiking, camping, and fly fishing.  But I most enjoy spending time and having adventures with my wife and 3 wonderful children.

Lydia LaSalle

Naturopathic Doctor

Education: Doctorate of Naturopathic Medicine from Bastyr University and Bachelor of Science in Biology from Trinity Western University.

Philosophy of Care: As a naturopathic doctor, my passion is to blend a conventional and integrative approach for whole-person health. I believe that patients should be well informed of all of their options and empowered to choose what best aligns with their values and beliefs. I especially enjoy educating patients in regards to the “why” of their treatment and the “how” of their diagnosis. My special interests in primary care include cardiovascular disease, diabetes, women’s health, infertility and preventative medicine.

As a primary care provider, I believe that excellent, high quality and individualized family healthcare should be available to all. As a graduate from Bastyr University, I recently completed two additional years of post-doctoral residency in primary care. This included rotations through a community health center that focuses on serving immigrants and refugees in King County. I had the privilege and opportunity to get to know families and attend to their unique healthcare needs from birth to geriatrics.

I have recently moved to the Skagit area to be closer to mountains, ocean and my first home, Canada. I could not be more excited to serve this community for the years to come! In my time off, I enjoy mountain biking, trail running, back-country snowboarding and climbing in the North Cascades.


Michelle Antonich

Naturopathic Doctor
Licensed Midwife

Education: Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry from the University of Washington; Doctorate of Naturopathic Medicine and Certificate in Midwifery from Bastyr University.

Philosophy of care: In my final year of pre-med at the University of Washington in 1996 I was accepted into medical school for family practice when I heard about Bastyr University and their combo programs of Naturopathic Medicine and midwifery. Upon learning about the programs I changed tracts to specialize in integrative medicine primary care and midwifery at Bastyr.

I believe that people who are empowered to make decisions about their health care that are based on information and not fear can make the best choices for themselves and their families. I love teaching people about their bodies, their conditions, and their options—and I appreciate being able to use both alternative and conventional medicines. My practice specialties are women’s health (adolescent through post-menopause) and pediatrics.

At this time in my life, working part-time allows me to focus on my family that includes 3 busy school-aged children, my husband and practice partner, Seth Cowan, and chocolate labrador retriever (and running partner) Porter.

Dr. Antonich delivers babies at the Mount Vernon Birth Center and attends home births.

Carly Meiser

Licensed Midwife

“I always had a feeling that my life’s work would end up in the realm of womens’ health. I graduated from Western Washington University in 2010 with a B.S. in Community Health, and worked in the non-proft sector for a few years. It was a great work environment but I knew I wanted to work in  more of a personal capacity with women and families.

In 2011, I took a doula training course and soon after, attended the birth of a friend. In the moment that I witnessed the strength and fierce power of that woman birthing her child, everything in my being said “YES, this is IT. I will become a midwife. I need to learn all that I can so that I can be with women during this life event.” I have never felt such clarity. From then on, it was full steam ahead.

I graduated from the Midwifery Program at Maternidad La Luz in El Paso, TX, Spring of 2014. It was one of the most fulfilling and challenging times of my life. I then moved back to Washington and earned my license the Summer of 2015 while assisting a number of midwives around Seattle. I worked at Ground Floor Health as the primary midwife for two and a half years. I am so grateful for the community and support of Midwives in Washington!

Reflecting over the past 5 years, I feel overwhelmed and honored to have been present during one of the most raw and powerful moments in a family’s life. I love promoting birth as the natural and normal process that it is. Along with attending births I provide in-home childbirth education and placenta encapsulation services.

My boyfriend, Zach, and I moved out of Seattle to the Whidbey Island this past summer and now we are ready for an adventure in Mt. Vernon. We are excited to leave the big city and settle somewhere a bit more peaceful. When I am not working, we are quite active and love being outdoors. I look forward to meeting you!”

Carly delivers babies at the Mount Vernon Birth Center and attends home births.

Cyrena Gilpatrick

Licensed Midwife

I was born with a passion for women’s health, pregnancy, and birth. I started volunteering at my local hospital at the age of ten, and attended my first birth at the age of 16. I knew at that point, more than ever, that I needed to be a birth worker, in whatever form possible. I received my Bachelors of Science in Psychology from the University of New Hampshire while also taking prerequisite courses for nursing, and undergoing doula training at Birthwise School of Midwifery. After having my son in the hospital, I realized that midwifery was my passion, and out of hospital birth was truly the direction my heart was pulling me in.

I worked as the teaching assistant for a nursing course at the University of New Hampshire titled “Making Babies” for over three years where I met a legend in my midwifery world, Carol Leonard. Just listening to her describe the births she had attended, and the babies born into her hands lit the fire inside me to pursue what I had always known was my true purpose, aside from being a momma. I am now in my second year at Bastyr University, only one year away from attaining my Master of Science in Midwifery degree.

I know that women have the ability to listen to their own bodies and understand instinctively what to do during labor, because I have witnessed it time and time again. I believe that it is important to stand by women, to remind them that they are strong and capable of advocating for exactly what they need. I am constantly in awe of the strength, tenacity, and power laboring women possess. And I am honored to have a front row seat to that magical moment when a woman recognizes that she can harness that strength and power within herself to bring her baby earthside.

Cyrena delivers babies at the Mount Vernon Birth Center and attends home births.


Lisa Litton

Certified Nurse Midwife
ARNP- Womens Health

Education: Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Iowa, Master of Science in Midwifery from the University of Utah, Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Belmont University.

Philosophy of care: I had what turns out to have been a major epiphany when I was nineteen and searching for a reason to go back to college: I wanted to deliver babies! But not, I hastened to add, as a doctor. My mom, who had just finished a Master’s degree in Psychiatric Nursing at the University of Iowa, told me what a midwife was which led me to do extensive research in the college library about maternity care in the U.S. and specifically, how the midwifery approach could improve not only the outcomes but the entire experience of giving birth. I was a “believer” and thereby drawn into the profession as if it had been always been my dream to do this work.

This epiphany was the catalyst for a very long and somewhat circuitous journey (both physically and emotionally) searching for the right place to work in which I didn’t have to compromise my values and beliefs and could be valued for my gifts. I suspected from the beginning that attending births anywhere but the hospital (home, birth center, alternative book store) would suit me best since I find large institutions too cumbersome and unwieldy to do a good job of serving women who are going through so personal and intimate a transition as giving birth. Yet, I began my career in 1985 fighting for hospital privileges at a rural hospital in Moscow, ID where there had never before been a midwife on staff.

Fast forward to the present. I found Michelle, Seth and Mount Vernon Birth Center in the Fall of 2010 at the ripe old age of 54 and joined the team at Skagit Family Health Clinic in April of 2011. After years of attending births in hospitals, birth centers and an occasional home birth in the states of Idaho, Washington, Oregon and Arizona I finally feel I have found the ideal practice in which I can flourish . . . and then retire. I like the intimacy of a smaller practice in which I can form close bonds with the women and families I meet. I love having the luxury of caring for women who really want natural childbirth and for whom the experience of giving birth is as important as the outcome (a healthy mom and baby, of course). I am looking forward to incorporating more group care into our model and especially like to provide birth control counseling and services.

I have two children who are in their 20’s. A son who was born at a birth center in Spokane , WA and a daughter who was born at my sister’s house in Wenatchee, WA. Both were wonderful and transformative experiences and much better planned than my own wedding. My husband has not only been an amazing father to our children he has also become the ideal midwife’s partner who can cook, clean, do laundry, go shopping (basically keep the household running) as well as offer emotional support when I feel exhausted or discouraged and even offer advice on how to decide if someone is really in active labor or not (unasked for, of course).

In my spare time I like to knit, bead, spin, read, explore the outdoors and harvest food from our annual vegetable garden.  Just ask me for a knitting lesson and I will not be able to resist showing you all that you need to know to knit a scarf or a pair of socks.

Lisa delivers babies at the Mount Vernon Birth Center and attends home births.