Central Oregon Daily▶️ ‘Patients are friends’: Sunriver’s only clinician set to retire after 40...

▶️ ‘Patients are friends’: Sunriver’s only clinician set to retire after 40 yrs

▶️ ‘Patients are friends’: Sunriver’s only clinician set to retire after 40 yrs

After 40 years of serving the Sunriver community, Dr. Daniel Skotte with High Desert Family Medicine is retiring. But the clinic itself — the only one in Sunriver — will continue to operate.

High Desert Family Medicine will be taken over by Summit Medical Group. That means Dr. Skotte can finally have some R-and-R after four decades. 

“Patients are friends in this practice, so it’s very difficult to leave,” Skotte said.

The age range of his patients ranged at 1.5-to-105 years old. His oldest patient has since passed.

“We do pediatrics, we do geriatrics and everything in between,” Skotte said. “We do women’s health care, so it’s been a fun journey.”

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A fun journey with a lot of the more common Sunriver injuries like “people with fish hooks in their ears and getting hit by golf balls and a lot of bike accidents,” according to Skotte.

One extreme case Skotte recalled was a hunting accident.

“A duck hunter on the other side of the Deschutes inadvertently shot himself point blank range with a shot gun in his thigh, and he came here because there was nowhere else to go,” Skotte said. The man survived.

After starting work as a doctor in Sunriver, Skotte took on the role of a flight surgeon for the U.S. Air Force, saying the positions were complimentary.

“I think they both helped each other because here we see everything,” Skotte said. “I mean people walk in with all kinds of lacerations and fractures and it’s the same thing you see when you’re deployed in the military.”

Now he’s off to retirement, thankful for the Sunriver community. 

“It has been an unbelievable pleasure. It’s been amazing to have your trust,” Skotte said.

Summit Health will expand open hours at the clinic during the weekend and will continue to accept same-day walk-in appointments and schedules primary care visits. 

The clinic is expected to be open and in operation by Summit Health by June.

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