Two Longtime GVHC Medical Providers Retire
Two longtime medical providers, Dr. Salvador Sandoval and physician assistant Jerry Lewis, made the decision to retire after putting it off for years in order to care for their patients. They gave more than 35 years of service to the area of Merced. The shortage of Medical Providers in Merced County kept them working longer than they had anticipated.
I saw the need and that’s why I wanted to stay. It became a real mission. It wasn’t just a job.
Merced County has a health-professional shortage with only 45.4 doctors to every 100,000 residents. The Calfornia statewide ratio is 77.3 doctors to every 100,000 residents.
Dr. Sandoval (67) spent a lot of his four-decade career serving the homeless, elderly and migrant field worker populations of Merced County.
Not many primary care providers offered house calls, but Dr. Sandoval used Golden Valley’s Medical Outreach Mobile, known as MOM, to care for patients who were hard to reach. In 2015, Sandoval was named as one of the “physicians making a difference” by the Migrant Clinicians Network.
Dr. Sandoval stated that he will continue to serve at the D Street Homeless Shelter every week until another health care provider is found to take his place.
Sandoval and Lewis both worked at the Golden Valley clinic in Planada. Lewis had worked there full-time since its opening in 1986. Sandoval joined Golden Valley Health Centers in 1980 and spent the last seven years in Planada.
Lewis stated that he’ll help out where he’s needed and continue working part-time in medicine, possibly with some type of missionary work.