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News & Events

CCMSD Wilma Phillips Spotlight

Name: Wilma Phillips

Title: LPN (Licensed Practical Nurse) 

Tenure: 35 Years

Bio: 

For years, Crook County Medical District has been a beacon for those who need help with their healthcare. It’s been a place of comfort, of safety, of healing. It’s also been a place for people who care about others to ply their craft, and help take care of their neighbors. Some of these doctors and nurses have been there for years. Some have been there for weeks, months, even days. 

Wilma Phillips has been there for 35 years. 

Phillips, an LPN with CCMSD, credits her longevity at the Hulett Clinic to a genuine love for not only the people she takes care of, but the people with whom she works alongside.  

She began her career in medicine years ago and has seen the industry go through many changes. But one thing that hasn’t changed has been her desire to help others, in any way that she can. 

 “I went to school and got my LPN in 1973,” Phillips laughed. “I was pregnant with my daughter at the time, and I finished after she was born. She was actually born while I was in school, which left me with three little ones at home.” 

Phillips was, in a word, busy. But, in another word, she was passionate. And that passion fueled her school career and led to her working for CCMSD – before it was even called CCMSD! 

“I’ve been here 35 years,” Phillips stated. “I started with the clinic when I moved back down here to Wyoming. I was originally from here, so when I moved back with my kids, I started working with the clinic. It wasn’t Crook County at that time, and I worked with them for several years before the county took it over.” 

Phillips said the Hulett Hometown Clinic had other managers before the county re-claimed it, which resulted in various changes. But the one thing that never changed was the clinic’s mission to put patients first by offering care that was close to home. 

Phillips, alongside the rest of the doctors, nurses, and staff of CCMSD, has been doing that for a very long time. 

“My favorite part of this job is the people,” she said. “I enjoy working with our people and getting to know the patients because, in the clinic, you get to know them really well. So I enjoy learning about them and helping them however I can.” 

One of the best, and most unique, aspects of Crook County Medical District is how tight-knit the clinic is within the community. It’s a small town atmosphere and most of the people that live in Crook County have lived there all their lives. Or, at the very least, they moved away and then came back. That’s what Phillips did but, she says, she’s seen a lot of people grow up before her eyes, never straying too far from home. 

“I grew up around here, and I’ve worked here for so long that I’m seeing kids that we saw in high school who are married now and starting their own families,” she said. “It reminds you how old you are, but it’s fun to see how they’ve all changed and what keeps them around here. I just really enjoy it.” 

Which is, presumably, why she has stuck around for more than three decades. Another reason why is because of the people with whom she works; most notably, one of the CCMSD providers, Dr. Bob Cummings. 

“I love the job, and the provider I work with is wonderful,” Phillips shared. “We’ve worked together for 30 years, so it’s just a very family-like feeling. We joke that it’s almost like we’re married because we’ve worked with each other for so long. He grew up around here as well, so he knows everybody too.” 

And it’s that familiarity, that closeness, that permeates the halls of CCMSD. It’s a familiarity that allows patients to have a certain amount of trust, even before the first stitch, splint, or surgery. 

“I think, in all the clinics, what separates us from others is just that personal connection with the patients,” Phillips offered. “The other communities, of course, are larger than Hulett, population-wise. But they’re still small towns. So you get to know your patients and see them in other areas, besides just here. If you go to school functions or other events, or fundraisers, you get to see them outside as well. They’re not just patients; they’re friends, too.” 

Friends, too. That’s a good description for the relationship between patient and provider at CCMSD. Friends. Family. Neighbors. That is what CCMSD is to their community, across the board. 

“That’s true in all three communities because even the bigger towns, even though they’re larger than we are, it’s still not like a city where you’re just a name with a number behind you when they call you in,” she said. “We can actually call them by their first name, because we know who they are.” 

Phillips has learned many lessons in her nearly four decades in healthcare. But the biggest lesson is, predictably, the oldest lesson in the book. 

“Our mantra is to always just treat your patients like you want people to treat you,” she stated. “Try and make them feel welcome and comfortable and let them know that you aren’t too busy to listen to them. If they come in and they want to tell you something, or show you pictures of their new grandchild or something, let them. I mean, we’re just as excited to see our patients here than if we saw them somewhere besides the clinic. So we take those extra little couple minutes and visit with them.” 

That is what separates Crook County Medical Services District from any other medical facility in the region…and maybe even the country. It’s that personal touch that tells patients when they come in that they will be treated like friends, like family, like neighbors. Because that’s what they are. 

“We really try to go out of our way to give personal, competent care to our patients, and make them feel like they aren’t just a number, but that they’re appreciated as a patient and that we do care about them,” Phillips said. “We’re small enough that we should be able to give them that extra care, whether it be in the hospital, or the clinics, or wherever. And I think everybody that I work with feels the same way; that because we’re smaller, we can give our patients that personal touch.”