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Intermountain Health Honors Doctor’s Day by Stressing Critical Role of Doctors in Rural Healthcare

Local doctors in rural communities provide access to the same best practices of healthcare, according to Intermountain Health leaders.

(PRUnderground) March 29th, 2024

In spring 1953, some 70 years ago, Dr. T.R. Gledhill was one of the few doctors practicing medicine in Richfield when a measles outbreak swept through the city. Dr. Gledhill was thrown right into the thick of it.

A History of Sevier County author Guy Bishop gave this account: “Local children who contracted the disease were required to secure permission from Dr. T.R. Gledhill, Richfield physician, before returning to school. During a ten-day period at the height of the epidemic, the city physician ‘made 40 visits to homes, made about 100 telephone calls and issued 76 permits to return to school.’ By 16 April the school principals of both the Richfield High School and the elementary school were reporting ‘a decrease in the number of absences because of the disease.’”

Dr. Gledhill’s response to a community in need was nothing short of admirable. His dedication to aiding his patients reminds us of the importance of our community doctors.

Doctors today still make heroic efforts to help individuals live better and healthier lives. Today, however, entire teams of medical personnel—including first responders, air transport, and emergency room and specialty physicians—would be placed on alert to respond to an epidemic like that of 1953.

“Healthcare today is a team sport,” said Brent Schmidt, Intermountain Sevier Valley Hospital administrator. “I admire our physicians, the starring roles they play, and their dedication and service. Our doctors create lasting impressions as they give comfort to patients and their families. I appreciate how our doctors honor the other members of our healthcare teams by likewise treating them with kindness and respect.”

Physicians collaborate to create “pathways,” or game plans, that generate the very best medical care for individual patients. These best practices help all physicians and hospital teams know their part in providing excellent care. For example, pathways may determine care for stroke, pre-term labor, total joint replacement, or open-heart surgery patients. This kind of evidence-based care ensures the best possible outcomes.

“I admire the collective knowledge of our doctors,” said Schmidt. “Some of them have gone to school an entire lifetime so that they can help others live better. The expansion and consolidation healthcare will help our doctors continue to network and refine care. It helps bring patients together with physicians who can help.”

While health services continue to grow, health technology and outreach also continues to grow. New telemedicine networks allow oncologists to visit with cancer patients in remote and rural areas. Telemedicine has even helped resuscitate newborns in distant areas. Technology has allowed for this key partnership between remote patients and specialty physicians.

Schmidt related that central Utah’s doctors continue to go above and beyond to help their patients every day. He specifically mentioned the hospitalist physicians who care for those in the hospital in tandem with the tele-hospitalist team. Following evidence-based care and using modern technology, they do their best to relieve suffering patients and to calm anxious loved ones all while providing the best care possible.

Take a moment to reflect on what a doctor has done for you or someone you love. Today’s doctors may not take on an epidemic alone, but they are ready and willing to help members of our communities live the heathiest lives possible. Please tell them how much they are appreciated this Doctors’ Day, March 30th, 2024, and all year long.

About Intermountain Health

Headquartered in Utah with locations in seven states and additional operations across the western U.S., Intermountain Health is a nonprofit system of 33 hospitals, 385 clinics, medical groups with some 3,900 employed physicians and advanced care providers, a health plans division called Select Health with more than one million members, and other health services. Helping people live the healthiest lives possible, Intermountain is committed to improving community health and is widely recognized as a leader in transforming healthcare by using evidence-based best practices to consistently deliver high-quality outcomes at sustainable costs. For more information or updates, see

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