PCH/FMC Remembers Dr. Phipps

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  • Written By: Horizon Health

Paris Community Hospital/Family Medical Center extends its deepest sympathy to the family, friends, and patients of Dr. Leland Phipps, who passed away May 22 at age 64.Dr. Phipps

Dr. Phipps was a highly respected family medicine physician who served Edgar County and surrounding communities for 36 years.

“Dr. Phipps was the cornerstone of our medical staff,” said Oliver Smith, PCH/FMC president and CEO. “His legacy defines the excellent patient care our communities deserve, and his memory will live on within our organization. He will be missed greatly.”

During his near four-decade tenure as a local physician, Dr. Phipps once explained why he chose to practice in Paris: “I grew up in a small town and I wanted that type of lifestyle,” he said. “And, I also had strong ties to this area because of my mother’s family.” Dr. Phipps’ mother was born in Kansas, Ill.

Patient surveys received over the years described Dr. Phipps as a “true asset” to the community. Patient comments included the following: “Love Dr. Phipps and his attention to our health!” …“I have the utmost respect for Dr. Phipps and his staff” …“Dr. Phipps provides great care and shows genuine concern.”

Earlier DaysDr. Phipps and 3 others

A native of Kankakee, Ill., Dr. Phipps earned a bachelor’s of science degree in engineering at Northwestern University in Evanston in 1974. Northwestern is also where he met his wife, Carol. He graduated from the University of Illinois, Abraham Lincoln School of Medicine, in Chicago in 1978. He completed his internship and residency in family practice at the University of Kansas in 1981.

Dr. Phipps relocated to Paris in 1981, joining the local medical clinic with Drs. Duane Haskell, James Acklin, Joseph Shackelford, and Glen Skinner.

“Dr. Phipps was a superb physician, well trained, and dedicated,” said Dr. Reid Sutton, a colleague and personal friend of Dr. Phipps for 30-plus years. “He was known for his overall expertise and work ethic.”

Obstetrics Care

When Dr. Phipps arrived in Paris, he joined Dr. Shackelford in providing obstetrics care at Paris Community Hospital. Dr. Sutton recalled how Dr. Phipps redeveloped obstetrics, adding a “top notch” specially trained nursing unit. He also introduced ultrasound to the service.

When Dr. Shackelford left his Paris practice in 1984, Dr. Phipps was on call 24/7 delivering about 200 babies a year until obstetrics ended at PCH in 1988.

“Dr. Phipps dealt with all age groups, including multiple generations of families,” Dr. Sutton added.

Professional Accomplishments

Dr. Phipps served on the Edgar County Health Department Board and was chair of the Dr. Phippscapital campaign to build the new Paris Family Medical Center. While at PCH/FMC, he spent many years as medical chief of staff, a hospital board member, and received repeated recognition as an American Diabetes Association recognized provider. He was also the collaborating physician for Debbie Griffin, family nurse practitioner.

Dr. Phipps was board certified by the American Academy of Family Practice and a Fellow in the American Academy of Family Practice. Throughout the years, he served as clinical instructor at the University of Illinois and Southern Illinois University. He belonged to numerous professional organizations, including the American Medical Association, Illinois State Medical Society, and World Organization of Family Doctors.