One month in King City had physician ready to commit
By Sean Roney
The King City Rustler, Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Mee Memorial’s newest physician to join has only been in King City for two months, but he said he’s been wanting to work here after a one-month study program a few years back. He is part of a continually-growing team.
Dr. Khuong Phui has joined the team at Mee Memorial Hospital as a family practitioner. Working in both the King City Clinic and the Greenfield Clinic, he also brings with him colonoscopy and osteopathic services.
“I just started here as a family practice doctor in King City on the first of April,” Phui said. “I’ve always liked the rural setting. I’m not a big city person.”
“We’re very excited to have Dr. Phui here,” said Mee Memorial CEO Lex Smith. “He’s a very exciting young man. Very energetic and enthusiastic to be here in town. He’s a great addition to the hospital.”
When asked how he came to choose King City as his choice of rural hospitals, Phui said it was previous experience. “After my first year of medical school, I did a rural preceptorship here with Dr. Greenberg. I really liked the place. The people were nice and friendly, and so I came back for an interview during my residency. I chose to come back here.”
When asked about his time in King City as a full-time doctor and not as a medical student, Phui said, “I like it a lot. I like the rural setting. The people here are all really friendly, all the doctors are nice. I’ve enjoyed myself and had a really great time here.”
Phui, married and father to an eight-year-old son, a six-year-old son and a three-month-old daughter, said his family is still in West Covina. He said his children are finishing up their school year, at which time his wife and children will join him in relocating to King City.
With family practice and colonoscopies being somewhat self-explanatory, Phui’s specialization in osteopathic manipulative therapy took some explaining.
“If you get the body to align itself, then it’ll facilitate the healing process,” Phui said. “We employ techniques to realign the body’s system when it gets out of place from injury.”
Phui said it was been about ten years since there was another osteopathic specialist at the hospital.
When asked about his prior time in King City, Phui explained, “Through the California Academy of Family Physicians, there’s a program that they offer every summer for medical students to do a preceptorship. It basically means job shadowing a family physician in a certain area. I chose to do it in a rural area and came here to work with Dr. Greenberg. Basically I spent a month here watching what he does and Learning from him.”
Phui is the latest physician to join the Mee Memorial team, with the latest recruitments being part of new management’s effort to restructure the hospital.
“The management is great. Lex has done a wonderful job as CEO. Instead of losing money, we’re at a plus right now. I’ve seen a good change in management,” said Phui. “They really cater toward the physicians as well. I recommend to anybody who wants to practice rural medicine, to come here.”
Not only are the number of physicians and offerings expanding at Mee Memorial, but the facility is beginning to get upgrades.
“They’re planning on building a new building because it’s expanding so fast,” said Phui. “They’ll put the specialists in the new portion of the building, and this existing area will be more for the family physicians and family care practice,” he said of the upcoming changes to the King City Clinic.
“The Greenfield Clinic is nice, too. There’s a lot of friendly staff over there,” said Phui of his time in the northern clinic. “I work there two half-days a week.”
When asked about his experience with Bruce Greenberg, Phui said, “Dr. Greenberg has been a great mentor to me and he has been really helpful and instrumental in helping me to come here. He’s been very supportive.” Overall, he added, “Everybody’s a team player, which has been very nice.”
More family physicians are on the way. Smith announced Dr. Antonio Viscarra will be joining the physician staff sometime in July or August as a family practitioner with obstetrics and end of life skills.
Smith described Viscarra’s skill set as being, “From the womb to the tomb.”
Smith talked of future recruitment, as well, saying, “We currently do have a contract that we’re discussing with another physician to join us in September or October. That’s not finalized at this point in time. Overall we’ve been very successful in recruiting.”
When asked about the new expansion to the King City Clinic, Smith said the plans still need to go under review, then go out to bid. He noted the expansion of the clinic will allow the hospital to add three additional physicians to the clinic.
“It will open up room for procedure rooms,” Smith said. “It’s moving forward and like anything it takes a while. We’re hoping to bring forward a plan to the board for final approval for sometime in June of July. We would like to have it up and going sometime in late Fall or early Winter.”