Do you know a physician working hard to keep a rural community healthy? If so, we want to hear about it! Nominate him or her for Staff Care’s Country Doctor of the Year Award!
But if you do have a doctor to nominate, we urge you to hurry — only one month remains in the nomination process. On October 31, 2017, we'll cease accepting nominations for this year's award, and begin the selection process. (Read about the Country Doctor of the Year nomination process here.)
The winner of the Country Doctor of the Year Award receives two weeks of vacation, compliments of Staff Care — we’ll provide a fill-in locum tenens physician during that time to give our latest country doctor a much-deserved rest.
Perhaps more importantly, though, the Country Doctor of the Year Award often brings with it abundant abundant press coverage. The selfless nature of the rural physician’s work means they may not be interested in such attention, but their communities, and those similar to them — often struggling to maintain care or obtain federal funds — can benefit from such attention.
Acknowledging that the idea is to give the Country Doctor of the Year a few weeks vacation, Staff Care President Jeff Decker told Waxahachie, Texas' Daily Light that the “real intent” is to shine a light on the great work that rural physicians do each and every day.
“Nominations for the Country Doctor of the Year Award will be accepted for physicians who practice in rural communities and who are engaged in such primary care areas as general practice, family practice, internal medicine, and pediatrics,” Decker added. “Anyone can nominate a physician, including friends, patients, co-workers or family members, and all stories or anecdotes about the doctor are welcomed.”
Recent Country Doctor of the Year Award Winners
That media attention was certainly not lacking in 2017, when Kentucky’s Van Breeding, MD, was named Country Doctor of the Year. Given Dr. Breeding’s stature as a nationally renowned medical expert who writes blog articles on colon cancer screening for the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the media attention began immediately, and ultimately included such high-profile outlets as NPR, CNN and The New York Times.
Using the platform to speak out on the nation’s rural care crisis, as well as to express his views on the Affordable Care Act, Dr. Breeding told USA Today that, while “a patient with colon cancer may not mean much to a politician in Washington … I'm from here and if we fail that person because we not able to get them screened at an early enough stage, it's a friend, it's a relative, it's an old classmate. We are all kinfolks here." Read more of Dr. Breeding’s press coverage here.
Before that, our 2016 Country Doctor, Jasmine Sulaiman, MD, also drew widespread media attention to her work delivering care in rural Eastern Texas.
"On an individual level, Dr Sulaiman is unquestionably a highly committed and compassionate physician who is on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week,” Staff Care leaders told Medscape in 2016. “Her practice style also illustrates what we believe to be the future of rural medicine."
A few years earlier, USA Today profiled 2013 Country Doctor of the Year Robert Bösl. "I'm still baffled and tearful about it," Dr. Bösl told the publication. "I'm sure there are many others who are deserving as well. It's kind of humbling to even be considered for it."
Submit your nomination for the 2018 Staff Care Country Doctor of the Year at this link, or by hitting the button below. And don’t forget to follow us for important updates! You can find us on Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Facebook and YouTube.
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