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  • sblomeley9

Abby Peerce, APRN, is an amazing example of CHC dedication and caring to patients all over Arkansas

Updated: Oct 11, 2023

When her boss asked her to transfer to the clinic in Green Forrest, Abby Peerce didn’t hesitate. She didn’t even worry about an hour commute from her home in Lead Hill.

“I just really thought it would be a good fit,” said Peerce, an advanced practice registered nurse. “We’re a small little group at the clinic, but we’re a well-oiled machine. Being in these isolated areas really helps us give back to the community.”

Abby Peerce

Peerce, 38, works for Boston Mountain Rural Health Center, a Community Health Center with a main office in Marshall but with more than a dozen clinics in north central Arkansas, from Conway up to Mountain Home and west to Eureka Springs. She serves as the main medical provider in the Green Forrest clinic located in a sparsely populated area in eastern Carroll County.

Transportation can be a challenge for patients. Peerce recognizes those struggles and wants to do something about it. She recently volunteered to offer home health care services to a quadriplegic patient who lives more than a half-hour from the clinic. She previously worked for a hospital and for an urgent care clinic but didn’t get the same satisfaction she now receives at a Community Health Center.

“I just want to take care of patients,” Peerce said. “You always want quality of care over production numbers. People want to come to somebody who will listen and not feel like they are being run like a herd of cattle. Joe goes to the coffee shop and chit chats. He also wants to chit chat at the doctor’s office. They want someone they are comfortable talking to.”

Peerce, like a lot of people, went through a tough time during the COVID-19 pandemic. When a patient died, she seriously thought about quitting. She wasn’t sure if she could take it anymore. Then, her father and stepmother in Florida got COVID. Her stepmother died. Her dad survived. Neither had been vaccinated.

“I have never pushed people to do something they don’t want to do,” Peerce said. “But I always wonder if they had gotten the vaccine whether it would have changed the outcome.”

A good percentage of patients at the Green Forrest clinic are Latino. Many don’t speak English, so the clinic staff includes Spanish speakers. Peerce spends much effort educating Latino patients about the importance of proper diet because many suffer from diabetes.

“They come to America for the freedom to live and work, and we give them access to health care,” Peerce says. “I wouldn’t take back my experience here for anything.”


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