Is there a doctor in the hills?-attachment0

Is there a doctor in the hills?

The sometimes challenging road to health care in rural Western North Carolina extends beyond the curves of country back roads. Whether it’s dealing with the current physician shortage that affects all but Madison in the 16-county region or wrestling with social and economic barriers, local providers and patients share their challenges and plans to address rural health-care needs. (Cover by Emily Busey. Photo by Max Cooper.)

“The challenges I face are still the same as somebody that owns any other business down the street.” photo by Jonathan Welch

Is there a doctor in the house? Economics driving local physicians into large group practices

When Dr. Robert Fields and Dr. Andy Runkle opened Vista Family Health in 2003, Mission Medical Associates wasn’t even a blip on the radar. For Fields, Vista represented the culmination of a long-held dream. Growing up in a Puerto Rican family in the U.S., Fields longed to open a practice that could serve both Latinos […]