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Riverwood welcomes new RPAP medical student

Dan Dutcher

Dan Dutcher

Riverwood Healthcare Center is pleased to welcome Dan Dutcher, a third-year medical student at the University of Minnesota Medical School – Duluth who is participating in the Rural Physician Associate Program (RPAP).

Through the RPAP program, a third-year medical student lives in a rural community for nine months and participates in rotations of hospital and clinic care of patients under the supervision of local physicians. In October, Dutcher began seeing patients with Dr. Don Hughes, Riverwood Family Practice physician who acts as the primary mentor and trainer for resident physicians and medical students at Riverwood.

In the months ahead, Dutcher will also learn about obstetrics and gynecology care and spend time observing surgical care from local surgeons. He will see patients in clinic, hospital, emergency room, nursing homes, hospice and within the community.

A native of White Bear Lake, Minn., Dutcher completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Minnesota, Morris, earning a BS degree in biology. Before starting medical school at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, he completed a two-year stint in the Peace Corps from 2009 to 2011 in Morocco.

“Growing up in a large metropolitan area, I look forward to getting acquainted with rural community living and the local residents here,” Dutcher says. “My passion for practicing medicine stems from the time I spent in Morocco, seeing how medical care could transform the lives of those in need.”

Dutcher will be living in the Aitkin area and working at Riverwood through the end of June 2015. For hobbies, he enjoys musical theater and running and is looking forward to taking up cross-country skiing.