Mercy Clinic lands new surgeon, and Mercy Fort Smith adds acute care nurse

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 284 views 

Dr. Timothy Trotter has joined Mercy Clinic Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery in Fort Smith, and Cherrie Phouthavong has moved up to a new role as an acute care nurse practitioner in Mercy’s intensive care unit.

Trotter’s father, an obstetrician-gynecologist, delivered nearly 15,000 babies during his career in Stillwater, Okla. His great-uncle began practicing primary care medicine in Stillwater in the late-1920s.

“I started working in the operating room when I was 14 and have been involved in medicine for essentially all of my life,” said Trotter, a board-certified thoracic surgeon. “It was really all that I ever knew.”

Trotter brings nearly 30 years of experience to his new role at Mercy. He received his medical degree from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center in Oklahoma City. He completed his general surgery residency at Maricopa Medical Center in Phoenix, Ariz., and his fellowship in thoracic and cardiovascular surgery at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.

He spent 26 years in the U.S. Navy as an officer and reservist serving first as an undersea medical officer on a submarine then as the surgeon on an aircraft carrier. While serving in the U.S. Naval Reserves, he completed his thoracic surgery fellowship.

Trotter recently moved to Fort Smith from Vicksburg, Miss. In his spare time, he is an avid bicyclist and an amateur cellist. He previously played in the Vicksburg Community Orchestra and has a goal to play all of the Bach Cello Suites during his lifetime.

Phouthavong is not new to Mercy or the field of nursing, but is in a new role at the hospital after completing advanced training to become a nurse practitioner. She brings more than 20 years of experience as a registered nurse – 16 of those at Mercy Hospital Fort Smith – to her new role as an acute care nurse practitioner in Mercy’s intensive care unit. This new role means she can evaluate, diagnose and treat acute illnesses and chronic conditions.

“I keep a close relationship with my patients and their families, and I serve as their advocate,” she said. “I believe that providing holistic care to every patient can make a big difference in the clinical setting.”

Phouthavong is originally from the Philippines and received her bachelor’s degree in nursing from Velez College of Nursing in Cebu City, Philippines, in 1993. She moved to the United States two years later. Last December, she earned her master’s degree in nursing from the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Ala.