Settling into rural family medicine care

The two resident physicians who joined Bothwell Regional Health Center last July are entering the second year of their three-year training through the Bothwell-University of Missouri Rural Family Medicine Residency. In the past year, Dr. Brittany Pendergraft and Dr. Levi Harris have had the opportunity to expand their education in a rural medicine setting while also providing care for patients alongside mentoring physicians in the Bothwell health system.

“The first year of residency was challenging but fulfilling and I’m looking forward to year two,” Harris said. “It was an awesome learning experience, and I’ve really enjoyed working in clinic and developing relationships with the staff, attendings and the community.”

Both physicians have a passion for rural medicine, and Bothwell has provided them with unique experiences in caring for a variety of patients and conditions.

“I have had many experiences throughout the year treating complex medical conditions and seeing a wide variety of pathology,” Pendergraft said. “Not all of the top resources are available in a rural setting so you really have to think on your feet and be aware of all possible diagnoses.”

In the second year of their residency, Harris and Pendergraft are in Sedalia full-time and accepting patients of their own at Bothwell Family Medicine Associates.

“On top of seeing patients in the clinics, we will also care for established patients who are in the hospital and have time for other rotations including emergency medicine, cardiology, pediatrics, OB/GYN and elective rotations,” Harris said. “This allows us to be well-rounded physicians, which is even more important when practicing in a rural community. We will see patients mostly on our own, but still have oversight for procedures and always have an experienced physician available for each visit.”

Residency faculty at various Bothwell clinics have greatly impacted the education and success of Drs. Harris and Pendergraft and both feel grateful to learn from and practice medicine alongside them.

Brittany Pendergraft, MD
Dr. Brittany Pendergraft
Levi Harris DO
Dr. Levi Harris