Behavioral Health Professionals at Wekiva Springs
The staff at Wekiva Springs Center provides comprehensive treatment which is the key to recovery. Our staff includes experienced physicians, therapists, nutritionists and other healthcare professionals from a wide range of disciplines. When you enter treatment at Wekiva Springs, you gain access to quality care provided by a dedicated team of professionals.
Our primary treatment team includes our Director of Clinical Services, our Director of Nursing, a psychiatrist, internist, primary therapist, referring professionals and other specialists who are involved on a consulting basis. Perhaps the most important member of the team is YOU—the patient. You will be actively involved in setting treatment goals receive first-hand recommendations from the other members of the treatment team.
Get to know some of our staff members by reading the biographies below.
Sheila Carr, LCSW, Chief Executive Officer
Sheila has 18 years of experience in direct clinical services and administration in a behavioral healthcare setting. Her wide range of experience includes family, individual and group counseling in schools, correctional facilities, medical facilities and behavioral health venues.
Sheila received her master’s degree in social work from Florida State University and is a licensed clinical social worker in the state of Florida. She is also certified by the state of Florida as a clinical supervisor for counseling and social work. Over the past four years, Sheila has developed both behavioral health and substance abuse programs for both inpatient and outpatient services.
Marcus De Carvalho, MD, Medical Director
Marcus is a medical doctor who specializes in addiction medicine and psychiatry. He is board certified and serves as a diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. His main interests include schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, anxiety, addiction, post-traumatic stress and ADHD. He has extensive training in substance-related disorders including substance-induced dependence and substance induced mental disorders.
Marcus received his undergraduate degree from the University of Florida and earned his Doctor of Medicine degree from St. George’s University. He completed the first three years of post-graduate his psychiatric residency at the State University of New York in Syracuse, where he was chief resident. He finished his training in Tampa at the University of South Florida.
In his spare time Dr. De Carvalho enjoys spending time with his family. He is an avid sports fan and enjoys watching his Florida Gators on Saturday afternoons during football season. Some of his hobbies are swimming, water polo, reading and traveling.
Sireesha Chimata, MD
Sireesha is a board-certified psychiatrist who received her medical degree from JSS Medical College in Mysore, India.She completed her residency at East Tennessee State University, James H. Quillen College of Medicine. Sireesha recently relocated to Jacksonville to join the medical staff at Wekiva Springs. Her main areas of interest are the treatment of substance abuse and behavioral health disorders in women.
Karina Patel, MD
Dr. Karina Patel is a Doctor of Medicine who is also Board Certified in Psychiatry. Dr. Patel completed her psychiatry residency at Charleston Area Medical Center in West Virginia. She recently relocated to Jacksonville to join the medical staff at Wekiva Springs Center. Dr. Patel’s areas of interest within the field include psychopharmacology and psychotic disorders. She enjoys caring for patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and depression. Her philosophy of patient care is that of a patient centered approach with individualized treatment plans. In her free time, Dr. Patel enjoys reading, traveling, playing racquetball, and cycling.
Mohammed Touheed, MD
Mohammad is a board-certified internist who has been active in hospital medicine for the past 12 years. He graduated from Deccan College of Medical Sciences and came to the United States to pursue further studies. He completed residency training at Jersey Shore University Medical Center. He has worked as a hospitalist for several hospitals and opened an Urgent Care on the northside of Jacksonville before he transitioned to a full-time position at Wekiva Springs in 2013.
Mohammad hails from Hyderabad, India. His treatment approach is focused on the entire person to provide comprehensive, thorough and evidence-based healthcare for his patients. He also volunteers his time at a free clinic in the community.
Sagar Vijapura, MD
Sagar is a board-certified psychiatrist who specializes in mood disorders, anxiety disorders, ADHD and substance abuse. His patients describe him as caring, and describe his treatment plans as thorough and goal-oriented. Sagar loves watching sports, spending time with family, learning about healthcare technologies and playing basketball.
During his medical training, he was awarded membership into the distinguished AOA Medical Honor Society. Sagar completed his psychiatry residency and research training at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital, affiliate hospitals of Harvard Medical School. He has presented psychiatric research at national meetings, published multiple scholarly articles in professional journals and received numerous teaching awards.
After completing his training, Sagar returned to his hometown of Jacksonville to establish Vijapura Behavioral Health, a comprehensive treatment and research center for psychiatric and addiction medicine.
Sara Saqib, MD
Sara is a psychiatrist whose practice includes working with disorders such as depression, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress, anxiety, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorders and substance abuse. She is certified to prescribe Suboxone.
After graduating from medical school, Sara trained at East Carolina University. She has been practicing psychiatry since 2005 and has extensive experience treating children, adolescents and adults in a variety of settings. Sara has served as medical director with FACT and other intensive in-home services including substance abuse and medication management. She has also worked at Duval County Jail with the forensic population, state facilities and private hospitals. She is a member of the APA and FPS.
Sara works with patients who have co-occurring medical and psychiatric diagnosis. She also focuses on chronic illnesses like cancer and other debilitating diseases that lead to significant depression and anxiety.
Felix R. Toro, MD
Felix is a psychiatrist who specializes in neurology and the diverse presentation of behavioral, cognitive and emotional disorders in medicine. He graduated from the University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine in 1982 and has been in practice for over 35 years. He completed his residency at Washington University School of Medicine. Felix is a is fluent in Spanish speaker.
He has helped develop multiple programs that integrate different disciplines to address behavioral healthcare issues, pioneering what he calls “the common sense approach” to psychiatry and mental health.
Barb Estes, RN-BC, Director of Nursing
Barb brings over 30 years of behavioral health nursing. Her diverse career includes working almost 20 years for a local psychiatrist, being part of the startup team which initiated TRICARE® and developing TOP (TRICARE® Overseas Program). She also contributed to opening substance abuse partial hospitalization program at St. Vincent’s Hospital and Daniel Memorial.
She opened the electroconvulsive therapy department at River Point Behavioral Health Hospital and served as the director of nursing at that time. Most recently, Barb was delivering care to senior adults through home health and gained a vast understanding of patients with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. She is passionate about the care our patients receive and is vested in her coworkers. Barb attended Florida State University and is proud to fly the colors of garnet and gold.
Nicole Brinson, LCSW, Director of Clinical Operations
Nicole has over 15 years of experience working with children, adults and families in the behavioral health field. She has worked with at-risk children and their families in the community and the foster care system. She has developed independent living and mentoring programs for young adults aging out of the -certified as a clinical supervisor for social work interns preparing for licensure.
She has been in charge of a day treatment program for adults with chronically mental illness and has thorough case management experience. NIcole has worked with TRICARE® to advocate for the behavioral healthcare needs of active duty service members and their families. Nicole received her undergraduate degree in psychology and sociology from State University of New York at Stony Brook. She earned her master’s degree in clinical social work from Florida State University
Katie Parker, RN, Director of Admissions
Katie is a registered nurse who recently relocated to Jacksonville from Virginia Beach, Virginia. She received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Her interest in medical and emotional treatment brought her back to school at the Beazley School of Nursing where she graduated Summa Cum Laude.
Katie started her career as a psychiatric nurse and acquired a special interest in treating patients with various psychotic disorders. Her time in the Wekiva Springs admissions department gave her a passion for helping patients access the proper level of care based on individual needs. She has over five years of experience providing exceptional care and leads a team of phenomenal staff members. With the admissions department serving as the first impression of the facility, Katie is dedicated to greeting patients with the utmost compassion and understanding during their most challenging times.
Julie Cole, MSW, Director of Social Services
Julie has over 12 years of experience working with various patient populations including children, families and senior adults. Her career began in Pittsburgh where she worked as a behavioral health consultant for children with Autism and other medical diagnoses. She moved to northeast Pennsylvania where she gained experience as the director of admissions and social services in two skilled nursing hospitals.
Julie has developed and facilitated community support groups and programs focused on loss and grief. She brings with her years of clinical experience as well as extensive leadership skills. She is passionate about helping those in need and helping patients reach their full potential.Julie received her undergraduate degree from Slippery Rock University and earned her master’s degree in social work from the University of Pittsburgh. She recently relocated to the Jacksonville area to join the team at Wekiva Springs.