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The leadership teams at Ringgold County Hospital and CHI Health Mercy Corning have created a partnership to bring a pediatrician to Southwest Iowa. Working together, they have hired Tabitha Wilson, M.D. Dr. Wilson will work in clinics operated by the two hospitals in Mt. Ayr, Corning, Lenox, and Bedford. She’ll also have admitting privileges at both Ringgold County Hospital and CHI Health Mercy Corning.
Dr. Wilson is a native of Bedford and had expressed an interest in returning to Southwest Iowa to establish a practice in the area. When Lisa Wolfe, president of CHI Health Mercy Corning, was made aware of Dr. Wilson’s interest, she reached out to Gordon Winkler, CEO of Ringgold County Hospital.
“Gordon and I agreed that this was a great opportunity to bring pediatric services to our area in an affordable manner,” she said.
“Working together, we’re able to recruit the best specialists,” said Winkler. “Through collaboration, we’re able to provide high-quality medical care in our rural communities. As an example, several years ago we began partnering with Decatur County Hospital in Leon. Ed Wehling, D.O. is a board-certified surgeon. He performs surgeries in both hospitals, and it’s working really well. There has been a demand for a pediatrician. We couldn’t be happier that we have the opportunity to share Dr. Wilson.”
Both leaders agree that this may be the first instance of collaborating, but it may not be the last. As other needs are identified, they’re interested in pursuing additional shared medical professionals. “The model is one that other facilities are using as well in an ability to provide cost-effective, high-quality services,” said Wolfe.
“It just makes sense,” agreed Winkler. “I think the collaborative method is the way to keep rural healthcare viable for the future. And, it’s important for our region’s economic development. Excellent healthcare is critical when attracting employers and maintaining a workforce. One thing builds on another. We’ll continue to partner if it means we can provide the best care for our patients and their families.”
Dr. Wilson will begin seeing patients in late August 2019. Parents wishing to pre-schedule August appointments with Dr. Wilson can call the Mount Ayr Medical Clinic at 641-464-4470, or CHI Health Clinics at 641-322-5245.