How One Family Supports Future Generations of Guthrie Patients

How One Family Supports Future Generations of Guthrie Patients

“I’m honored to speak on behalf of our community, and to support the health system in any way I can. Our goal is to help Guthrie continue to grow and train even more high-caliber doctors so that future generations will continue to receive extraordinary care.” – Doug Rich

Doug Rich and his family have a long history with Guthrie – as patients, as providers, and as advocates for the health system.

The story really starts with Rich’s mother, Kathleen. Both she and her husband, William, were in the Navy Medical Corps, and settled in the Twin Tiers region when they finished their service. Kathleen became Director of Nursing at Tioga Hospital. Soon after, that hospital joined the Guthrie Health System, where she worked for many years, helping to oversee its transformation into the nursing facility it is today. Doug remembers that his mother always spoke very highly of the doctors and other medical professionals and their sacrifices, and she was even asked to join Guthrie’s board of trustees after she retired.

Though Kathleen turned down the board seat to focus on her family, more recently, Doug joined the board, honoring his parents’ dedication to the health care profession, and helping Guthrie continue to provide the high-level care that he and many members of his family have benefited from.

“My mom received breast cancer treatment here,” says Doug, “and my dad was on dialysis. My wife, Luanne, recently underwent major surgery, and our kids, who were born prematurely while we were living in Maine, were still young when we moved back and have received ongoing care at Guthrie. My extended family has received care here as well. Joining the board was a way to give back to the health care providers and the community that has given so much to us, and to continue my parents’ legacy.”

A Small Town with Exceptional Health Services

Being able to get such a high level of care right in their community has been a real blessing for the Rich family. From cancer treatments and dialysis to his children’s health conditions and his wife’s surgery, they have needed care over the years that can sometimes be hard to find in rural communities.

“If we couldn’t get the care we needed at Guthrie, in many cases we would have to travel hours to Pittsburgh or Philadelphia,” says Doug. “We’re very lucky that a small town like Sayre is able to provide the level of service you’d ordinarily find at a much larger hospital. It has made getting the care we need much more convenient and less stressful. Plus, we get more personalized attention. Every one of our providers at Guthrie has been so personable, accessible, and thorough. They always take the time to explain our options and walk us through our care. And the coordination between our primary care doctor and all the surgeons and specialists who have been part of our care has been exceptional too.”