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Abebe

Nurelign Abebe, MD, Joins PCRMC Medical Group

Nurelign Abebe, MD, is a new addition to the Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) Physicians Group. He comes to PCRMC this August as a nephrologist, but this is not his first time in Rolla. Dr. Abebe originally was a hospitalist at PCRMC from 2011 to 2015.

A nephrologist, also known as a renal physician, is a specialist in internal medicine who has received additional training in the medical treatment of patients with kidney diseases. Nephrologists treat patients with conditions related to kidney problems, including kidney failure, as well as acute and chronic kidney diseases that are due to multiple causes, such as diabetes and high blood pressure.

Dr. Abebe is originally from Ethiopia, a country in eastern Africa. As a child, his youngest brother became sick and had to stay at a hospital in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia. “I remember seeing the doctors and nurses making rounds, and I made the decision then that being a doctor is what I’d like to do,” Dr. Abebe says.

Dr. Abebe earned his medical degree from Gondar College of Medical Sciences in Ethiopia. He received his residency training in internal medicine through Addis Ababa University at Black Lion Hospital in Ethiopia.

In addition, he completed a residency program in internal medicine at St. Luke’s Hospital in Chesterfield, Missouri. In his second and third years, Dr. Abebe was named Resident of the Year at St. Luke’s.

He completed a nephrology fellowship at Barnes-Jewish Hospital through Washington University in St. Louis.

Dr. Abebe says what he likes about PCRMC is that this healthcare organization “has many different specialties, so the doc­tors can take care of multiple patients and they don’t have to refer them to other facilities.”

Nephrology is a thought-provoking specialty, Dr. Abebe says. “There can be many types of problems with kidneys,” he says. And if a nephrologist like Dr. Abebe can catch issues earlier, patients can avoid more serious kidney problems down the road.

Dr. Abebe has been practicing medicine for over 20 years. He is married to Meskeram Asfaw. The couple has three children, two daughters, Lydia and Rebecca, and one son, David.

joel leon becerril

Joel Leon-Becerril, MD, Joins PCRMC Physicians Group

The Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) Physicians Group welcomes Joel Leon-Becerril, MD, as a new urologist. He joins fellow urologist Geoff Lloyd-Smith, MD.

Urologists specialize in treating conditions or diseases in the male and female urinary tract and male reproductive organs.

Dr. Leon-Becerril was born and raised in Mexico. While his father was a general practitioner, Dr. Leon-Becerril credits a fascination in science and the chance to help others as to what gave him the spark to become a doctor. “It was the perfect combination,” he says.

Dr. Leon-Becerril graduated from medical school at the Panamerican University in Mexico. He then studied general surgery for two years as an intern and a resident at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, Texas. He recently completed a four-year urology residency program at the University of Texas.

Dr. Leon-Becerril can treat patients with various urological conditions from kidney stones to benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), which occurs when the prostate enlarges, as well as erectile dysfunction, kidney cancer, bladder cancer, testicular cancer and penile cancer. He brings 5 years of experience to the PCRMC team.

Dr. Leon-Becerril has always liked using and learning about technology, and in this area of medicine, technology plays a big part in many of the procedures he performs.

Dr. Leon-Becerril is trained in laparoscopic surgery, which is a minimally invasive form of surgery. In fact, during his residency, Dr. Leon-Becerril was awarded an achievement naming him the best resident of the laparoscopic surgery program at the University of Texas Health Science Center by the Society of Laparoendoscopic Surgeons.

He also has been trained in adrenalectomies, in which one or both of the adrenal glands are surgically removed, and partial nephrectomies, in which part of the kidney is removed.

To keep patients’ urinary systems healthy, Dr. Leon-Becerril recommends people stay hydrated. “This can prevent the formation of kidney stones,” he says. Additionally, if patients feel there is any tension in their urinary tracts or notice blood in their urine, they need to seek the help of a urologist.

Dr. Leon-Becerril has been married to his wife, Alicia, for six years, and they have three children, Antonio, Sarah and Joel.

For more information or to make an appointment with one of PCRMC’s urologists, visit pcrmc.org or call 573-364-9000.

Hugh Schuetz, DO, family medicine physician, (right) received the first Preceptor of the Year Award from Phelps County Regional Medical Center on June 1, 2017. Chadwell Vail, DO, internist, (left) is shown presenting the award, which recognizes Dr. Schuetz for his outstanding contributions to medical education.

Dr. Hugh Schuetz named PCRMC Preceptor of the Year

Hugh Schuetz, DO, a family medicine physician with Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) has been named the Preceptor of the Year for 2016-17.

Dr. Schuetz was presented this first-time award on June 1, 2017, during a PCRMC Medical Group meeting. The award recognizes his outstanding contributions to medical education.

“I am very humbled to receive this award,” said Dr. Schuetz, former director of student medical education at PCRMC for more than 20 years. “Being associated with PCRMC’s medical education program has been the highlight of my career, and this honor is just the cherry on top of the sundae.”

Students in the Mid-Missouri AHEC (Area Health Education Center) program at PCRMC chose Dr. Schuetz to receive the honor. Their decision was unanimous, according to Chadwell Vail, DO, an internal medicine physician and current director of student medical education at PCRMC.

“They chose Dr. Schuetz because he is an amazing mentor,” Dr. Vail said. “One student even noted that had it not been for Dr. Schuetz, he would not have done as well as he did during his third- and fourth-year clinical clerkships.”

Most of these students from A.T. Still University – Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine and Kansas City University of Medicine and Bioscience are in their third and fourth years of medical school and complete many of their clinical clerkships at PCRMC, including some with Dr. Schuetz.

While studying at PCRMC, the medical students participate in a didactic program, where they attend lectures and workshops led by various physicians and specialists, such as Dr. Schuetz. “The medical, nursing and Allied Health family are all to be commended for their participation in providing an exceptional, inclusive educational experience,” Dr. Schuetz says.

Dr. Schuetz continues to work with medical students at PCRMC, educating them about physical exams and coaching them as they receive practical experience in a hospital setting.

“It is a pleasant reward to see the vast majority of medical students who receive training and education at PCRMC grow up to become more independent, self-sufficient and knowledgeable,” Dr. Schuetz said.

rackham

Forrest Rackham, PsyD, Joins PCRMC Medical Group

Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) is pleased to announce the addition of psychologist Forrest Rackham, Psy.D, to the PCRMC Medical Group.

Dr. Rackham is a licensed clinical psychologist and has been practicing since 2012.

He earned his Doctor of Psychology in clinical psychology and his Master of Science from Georgia Southern University in Statesboro, Georgia. He received a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio.

His special interests include acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), hypnosis, rural psychology, primary care psychology and the integration of psychotherapy and spirituality.

As a psychologist, Dr. Rackham said he enjoys connecting with individuals.

“I get to see people become more self-reliant,” he said. “Also, patients allow me to be part of their journey toward behavioral changes and becoming more fulfilled with their lives.”

Before coming to PCRMC, Dr. Rackham worked at community health centers in Virginia and Iowa.

As for the best advice Dr. Rackham gives his patients, it’s quite simple: just breathe. “Stressors can make our bodies tense, and breathing helps us slow down and focus,” he said.

To learn more about Dr. Rackham, or to make an appointment, please visit pcrmc.com or call 573-364-9000.

pfac

PCRMC Patient and Family Advisory Council Seeking Community Members

Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) is seeking community members to serve on a new Patient and Family Advisory Council.

As a patient and community member, you have valuable insights, suggestions and experiences that will be beneficial to the council. Your advice could potentially influence future hospital initiatives, which will focus on the healthcare experience for patients, families and visitors.

“At PCRMC, we are constantly working to improve the patient experience,” says PCRMC Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Jason Shenefield. “By serving on this council, you have the opportunity to really make a difference to our patients and guests.”

PCRMC is seeking up to 8 individuals from the community who have been a patient or a family member of a patient at PCRMC to serve on the council. PCRMC staff members also will be part of the council to help facilitate the discussions.

Members must be willing to serve on the council for at least one year and be available to meet once a month, starting with an orientation on July 27, 2017. Applicants are being sought throughout PCRMC’s service area to get a wide variety of perspectives and input.

The deadline to apply is June 21, 2017.

If you are interested in joining the Patient and Family Advisory Council at PCRMC, or for more information, please contact Carla Clayton at cclayton@pcrmc.com or visit https://www.pcrmc.com/Patients-Visitors/PFAC-Membership-Application to complete an application online.