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Hometown Advantage

May 24, 2017 02:21PM ● By Digital Media Director

Melody Eide, MD

Ever since she completed her residency program at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, Dermatologist Melody Eide, MD, MPH, has been gradually moving back toward her hometown in South Dakota’s Black Hills.

During medical school at Dartmouth, Dr. Eide did an eight-week Family Medicine clerkship at Queen City Medical Clinic in Spearfish. “That experience showed me how rewarding it could be to practice in South Dakota,” says Eide, who was born and raised on her family homestead between Belle Fourche and Newell. “Even though people sometimes have to travel very far to see a doctor, everyone is connected in some way.”

Although she and her Michigan-native husband first settled in Michigan, they got married in South Dakota and returned to the region as often as possible. Ultimately, it was the birth of their first child, now 4-years old, which brought her back to the state to practice at Rapid City Medical Center.

“There is nothing like having children to make you reevaluate your priorities and think about how you want to raise them,” she says. “I missed the trees and the hills and all the great state parks. The time had come to put down roots.”

Recently, Dr. Eide, who is boarded in both dermatology and clinical informatics, began providing outreach care at The Medical Center of Spearfish four times a week, putting her even closer to home.

“Every day I’m seeing someone who is connected to me in some way, either through family or friends,” observes Dr. Eide. “It makes me feel more fulfilled as a physician to have these more complex personal relationships.”

Her experience growing up in a rural area has also translated into an interest in telemedicine and a deep sensitivity to the unique needs to patients who must travel for care. “In general, it makes me more conscious of the care plans I put forward and how I map them out for my patients,” she says.