Before there was Pinehurst Surgical Clinic, before FirstHealth, and before Moore Regional Hospital, there was one doctor: Dr. Clement R. Monroe. He would not only play an instrumental role in the creation of what was then Moore County Hospital (MCH), but he was also the driving force behind the creation of Pinehurst Surgical Clinic, which first started within the confines of the hospital before growing into what it is today.
In honor of the rapidly approaching 75th anniversary of Pinehurst Surgical Clinic, they invite you to take a journey through history and start where it all began; with one doctor and one vision for healthcare in Moore County.
While he would later become who most would consider the pioneer of medicine in the area, Dr. Monroe’s roots in the Carolinas go back further than when MCH was founded. Dr. Monroe grew up just outside of West End, North Carolina, until leaving to pursue an education in medicine in Baltimore, Maryland.
In 1929, after Dr. Monroe completed his medical training he was invited by North Carolina Congressman, and good friend, Bob Page to leave his Baltimore home behind and come back to the area to play an instrumental role in what would become MCH.
That same year, MCH officially opened their doors on Thanksgiving Day with the help of the Duke Endowment, which provided one-third of the $225,000 cost of building the original MCH. Inside were 33 beds, a staff of 27 people, and a vision spearheaded by Dr. Monroe. This vision included healthcare for the masses in rural areas.
A hospital expansion followed shortly after opening, and the bed count was increased to 80, which meant Dr. Monroe’s responsibilities grew. It was his job to add surgeons to continue to support the growing hospital.
One, in particular, Dr. Michael Pishko, shared his dream to start a private practice, although the team was kept busy with the multidisciplinary work they performed at the hospital.
Things would change in 1946. After being relieved of his administrative duties, Dr. Monroe, in coordination with Dr. Pishko and Dr. William Hollister, presented a plan for what would become Pinehurst Surgical Clinic.
The plan utilized the basement office as the clinic, and the hospital operating rooms for surgeries. It truly was a win-win, as the hospital could keep their surgeons on grounds and the surgeons could open the private practice they had envisioned. As you may imagine, the plan passed with a resounding yes and Pinehurst Surgical Clinic was formed.
Pinehurst Surgical Clinic was founded on the concept of teamwork, and true dedication to delivering quality patient care. For nearly 75 years, these principles have shaped every aspect of their business — from customer service to outpatient care, to medical training, and everything in between. Dr. Monroe provided an exceptional institution with an exceptional beginning.
Courtesy photo of Dr. Monroe.