Arthur Newkirk, MD, will be retiring from Blue Hill Memorial Hospital (BHMH) and Blue Hill Family Medicine on October 1, 2012. Over the years Dr. Newkirk has cared for thousands of patients of all ages, treating a wide range of illnesses. As one of the most veteran physicians on staff, he will be greatly missed by the Blue Hill community.
Currently serving as the hospital’s Chief of Staff, Dr. Newkirk also sits on the BHMH Board of Trustees and Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems Clinical Coordinating Committee. He is board certified in family medicine, a member of the Maine Academy of Family Physicians, a fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians, and recently became a member of the Maine Medical Association. Throughout his entire career, Dr. Newkirk placed great importance on helping young medical students and residents. He takes profound pride in the time he has dedicated to EMMC residents and in his work with Brown University, coordinating rural medical rotations for students.
Newkirk attended Haverford College outside of Philadelphia, and served in the Peace Corps in Korea prior to attending Medical School at The State University of New York Health Science Center at Syracuse. He completed his family practice residency in Bangor at Eastern Maine Medical Center. In September of 1979, Dr. Newkirk first visited Blue Hill for a month-long rural family practice rotation. On August 3, 1981 he began practicing at Blue Hill Memorial Hospital.
Early in his Blue Hill career, Dr. Newkirk’s practice involved 24 hour Emergency Room coverage and inpatient hospital care, in addition to the office care of his patients. He delivered babies, assisted at surgery, made house calls and cared for patients in four different nursing homes. Over time, changes in the practice of medicine dictated change in the scope of his practice. He stopped delivering babies and his emergency room coverage ended. However, he continued making house calls, seeing nursing home patients, and until a few months ago continued to attend his hospitalized patients.
During an externship with Beal College in 2003, Debbie Snow first met Dr. Newkirk. Serving as his medical assistant of nine years, she feels privileged to have worked with one of the best doctors she knows. “I admire his genuine interest and great ability to care for all of his patients,” describes Snow. “He stops at nothing to figure out what’s wrong and has always been exceptionally good at making both staff and his patients feel comfortable with his honesty and integrity. The calming and comforting effect that he has on all of us will be missed – we are losing someone great.”
Dr. Newkirk moved to Blue Hill, and stayed, because of the high quality of healthcare consistently delivered by the many outstanding practitioners. He remains proud that he and his colleagues are continuously committed to providing excellent care in a sensible way. “I feel so very privileged for the confidence that my patients have placed in me” explains Dr. Newkirk. “My philosophy has always been to make it a priority to offer exceptional, comprehensive care to all my patients and I feel good about the work I have accomplished here at BHMH.” He grew close to many of his patients, some who he describes as more like family. He and his wife, Joyce, raised two children in this community and plan to stay in Blue Hill. He hopes to see his patients and colleagues around town for years to come.