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Morning Sun
  • PATRICK'S PEOPLE: Dr. Jacqueline Orender begins year as chief of Via Christi medical staff

  • When it comes to practicing medicine, Jacqueline Orender, DO, wants to take care of everybody. That's why she decided be a family practitioner.
    “I want to take care of everybody from the grandparents to the grandbabies,” she said.
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  • When it comes to practicing medicine, Jacqueline Orender, DO, wants to take care of everybody. That's why she decided be a family practitioner.
    "I want to take care of everybody from the grandparents to the grandbabies," she said.
    Dr. Orender is the 2014 chief of the Via Christi Hospital medical staff.
    "I'm three days into the job," she said.
    Originally from Arma, she graduated from Northeast High School, then did her undergraduate work as a pre-med major at Pittsburg State University, graduating in 1994.
    "While I was at PSU I worked part-time on campus, and also in Dr. Sisk's office and at Small World Nursery," Dr. Orender said.
    She is also a 1999 graduate of the Oklahoma University College of Osteopathic Medicine and Surgery, Tulsa, and did her internship and residency at Freeman Hospital, Joplin.
    "I began practicing in Pittsburg in 2002," Dr. Orender said. "I chose to come back here because we wanted to be near our family and I wanted to practice rural medicine."
    Fewer and fewer medical students are making that choice these days.
    "A lot of students coming out can't fathom the model that we have here in Pittsburg of independent practitioners treating people both on an in-patient basis and out of the hospital," Dr. Orender said. "A lot of them just want to work at a hospital or clinic."
    She is married to Don Orender, also a local person, and they have three children, Luke, 13, Malia, 11, and Grace, 9. All of them attend St. Mary's Colgan schools.
    "Another one of the reasons we came back was because we wanted our children to attend parochial schools," Dr. Orender said. "My children are the fourth generation of my husband's family to attend Colgan. He, his mother and his grandmother all went there. Don tells the story that his grandmother helped sell bricks to build the school."
    Her sister-in-law, Charlotte Russell, is director of the Via Christi Cancer Center.
    Dr. Orender said she was honored to have been elected as chief of the medical staff, which is a one-year position.
    "Basically, you're the president of the staff," Dr. Orender said. "We serve on the Medical Executive Committee, preside at medical staff meetings, serve as liaison between the medical staff and the administration and represent the medical staff at events. I went to the topping out ceremony Friday for the new Via Christi Surgical Center."
    She and Dr. Holly Cranston will also attend a medical leadership conference this month in California.
    "A big difference in Pittsburg with our physicians is that we have such a camaraderie, we're not only colleagues but friends," Dr. Orender said. "You don't find that every place you go. It makes this a great place to practice."
    Page 2 of 2 - And, she said, Via Christi Hospital is a great facility.
    "There are a lot of good things happening at Via Christi," Dr. Orender said. "We're here to take care of patients and serve the community."
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