Dr. Ricardo Velasquez receives the Exceptional Clinical Leadership Award 

VALLEY — Ricardo Velasquez, MD of Valley-Wide Health Systems, Inc. was recently invited to the CHAMPS (Community Health Association of Mountain/Plains States) Board of Directors meeting on Sunday October 22, in Seattle, Washington. There he received the “Exceptional Clinical Leadership Award For Demonstrating Clinical Excellence and Commitment to Providing Quality Health Care for All!”

For 25 years, Dr. Ricardo Velasquez has served as a dedicated and farsighted clinical leader at Valley-Wide Health Systems. In all of his numerous leadership roles he has displayed a tenacious enthusiasm for developing innovative programs and services that meet the diverse needs of Valley-Wide’s patients.

As a strong advocate for holistic healthcare and continuity of care, Dr. Velasquez played a key role in integrating pharmacy and physical therapy into Valley-Wide’s care teams, and has worked hard to strengthen care plan oversight processes. He also spearheaded some of the earliest attempts to incorporate quality care outcome metrics into Valley-Wide’s medical practice, particularly for patients with complex conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, and asthma.

Perhaps most notably, Dr. Velasquez worked for more than 10 years to bring a rural residency training track to Valley-Wide. In collaboration with the Southern Colorado Family Medicine program and St. Mary Corwin Medical Center, Dr. Velasquez envisioned and then built a family practice teaching program designed to prepare physicians to live and work in rural communities. Due in large part to Dr. Velasquez’s remarkable passion for this project, the first cohort of family medicine residents are now in training at Valley-Wide’s Alamosa Family Medical Center clinic.

Throughout his long career, Dr. Velasquez has shown an unrelenting commitment to improving care for health center patients, and to educating the rural family medicine physicians who will treat future health center patients. The innovations that he has brought to Valley-Wide will undoubtedly leave a lasting legacy that will be felt by his community for years to come. 

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Caption: Dr. Ricardo Velasquez is shown with Gigi Darricades, President/Chief Executive Officer of Valley-Wide Health Systems, Inc. Courtesy photo