Mayor Dr. Floyd Woolcott - 1982

(Extension of Remarks - February 26, 1992) [Page: E450]
HON. DUNCAN HUNTER in the House of Representatives
  • Mr. HUNTER. Mr. Speaker, I wish to recognize Dr. Floyd Woolcott of Borrego Springs, CA, on the occasion of his 20th consecutive year of practice in that community and the 54th year in his medical career.

  • At age 82, Dr. Woolcott still makes house calls. This is particularly significant since residents in Borrego Valley, centered in the 600,000 acre Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, are isolated in a radius of 50 miles from trauma care facilities.

  • The Borrego Springs population fluctuates between 3,000 during peak summer months to 8,500 in the winter months, a condition that makes it extremely difficult to encourage qualified medical practitioners to move their practices to this community.

  • Dr. Woolcott arrived in Borrego Springs in November 1971 after 3 1/2 years as a general practitioner in Fairbanks, AK. His time in Alaska was preceded by a 22-year practice in Lake Oswego, OR.

  • Dr. Woolcott, in a newspaper interview, noted that he came to Borrego Springs as a transition into semiretirement, but it has never materialized.

  • The only period when the physician can take time off is during the summer months when winter visitors return home and the population shrinks. `This is the only time I can risk taking some time off,' he observes.

  • Three years ago, even the summer months brought no respite. When the community's medical clinic was forced to close due to a loss of its parent organization, Dr. Woolcott, in conjunction with qualified personnel from the fire department, assumed the responsibility of providing emergency medical care throughout the summer.

  • While he has since been joined by a medical center staff of two doctors, two nurses, and an administrative support staff, Dr. Woolcott was the only medical representative in Borrego Springs for most of the 20 years he has served the community.

  • Among his many tasks as a doctor during that period of time, he has given injections to race horses and intravenous solutions to injured coyotes. He even recalls a time when he had to pull a sea captain's wisdom tooth in the absence of a dentist.

  • On April 10, 1992, residents in Borrego Springs are expected to rally for the fourth consecutive year, contributing to and participating in the Woolcott Invitational Golf Tournament, a fund-raising effort that helps offset overhead operating costs of the medical center.

  • Naming the annual benefit in honor of Dr. Woolcott serves as a continuing tribute by the community to their country doctor. For the past 3 years and today as well, Dr. Woolcott has continued to play a large role in helping organize the fund-raising activities. At a time when increasing numbers of Americans are forced to go without health insurance and health care costs continue to go through the roof, Dr. Floyd L. Woolcott demonstrates what selfless devotion to professional-medical ethics can accomplish.

  • Dr. Woolcott's example should provide health professionals everywhere with the inspiration to rise above the current professional-economic-political problems that plague them at every turn and return to the business of caring for people.

  • The occasion of Dr. Woolcott's 20th anniversary as the country doctor still making house calls in Borrego Springs at age 82, commands my deepest respect and admiration. I am pleased to endorse the interest and efforts of Borrego Springs residents as they engage in self-help programs such as the fourth annual Woolcott Invitational Gold Tournament in response to the growing health care problems in America.