After 13 years at Loring Hospital, Dr. Ronald Cheney will soon begin focusing more of his time on volunteer and missionary work.
Cheney, who joined Loring Hospital in 2006, says he will genuinely miss seeing the friendly faces he’s gotten to know so well over the years.
“Being able to work with such a great group of people is certainly a highlight of my time at Loring,” said Cheney. “On top of that, the patient population has been wonderful. I’ve genuinely enjoyed getting to know them as well as their families. From day one, I felt welcomed and embraced by the Sac and surrounding communities.”
Sally Mason, surgery manager at Loring Hospital, has worked with Cheney since day one. “Not only will I miss Dr. Cheney’s skill as a surgeon, I will miss his kindness, sense of humor, and friendship,” said Mason. “He is just a really good person and working with him has made me want to become a better person also.”
Cheney’s deep passion for missionary work and volunteerism stems from his childhood growing up as a missionary kid in Swaziland, Africa, where he lived for a period of ten years.
Since 1996, he has been actively involved with the Pan-African Academy of Christian Surgeons, which is an organization based in the United States that is devoted to training African physicians to become surgeons. As part of his involvement with the organization, Cheney has performed missionary work in Egypt, Malawi, Kenya, Chad, and Nigeria.
“There is a very high need for surgeons in Africa,” said Cheney. “Currently, there is approximately one surgeon for every two million people in many areas. I wanted to give back and make a difference by training local surgeons, and though I’m saddened to leave Loring, I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to act on my dream of continuing to help people on a broader scale through mission work.”
Though patients, families, and Loring staff will sorely miss Cheney, the hospital is happy to announce Dr. Jason Dierking and Dr. John Armstrong of Buena Vista Regional Medical Center in Storm Lake will begin providing long term general surgery coverage in January 2020. Both are well respected and experienced surgeons who pride themselves with providing the highest level of patient care.
“Dr. Cheney is hands down a wonderful surgeon that puts patients’ needs first and will be missed,” added Stacy Johnson, chief executive officer and chief financial officer at Loring Hospital. “We wish him all the best in his missionary endeavors and there is no doubt that the student interaction will reciprocate his patient interaction here at Loring which is invaluable. Along the same note, Loring is ecstatic about our new partnership with Drs. Dierking and Armstrong which will be addressed in more detail in a future article.”