Thursday, July 29 marks the day that Richard Valuck, MD, will have been practicing invasive cardiology in Hannibal, Missouri for 30 years. There were two things that led him and his wife Jenny back to the community in July of 1991. Dr. Valuck grew up in Kirksville and Jenny is a native of Hannibal, so they knew they wanted to be close to family and friends. Dr. Valuck was also excited about the opportunity to partner with Hannibal Regional Hospital and launch the first cardiology service line in the area. This new service line included a cardiac catheterization lab which would provide Hannibal and surrounding areas with the most advanced technology in the diagnosis and treatment of heart disease. In the fall of 1991 Dr. Valuck became the first Invasive Cardiologist to perform a cardiac catheterization in Northeast Missouri.
Over the years there have been many changes in the healthcare system. When Dr. Valuck started his practice in 1991 he was self-employed in affiliation with Hannibal Regional Hospital. Around the mid-2000s, there were more physicians deciding to close their private practice and go to work for the hospital. In 2007, Dr. Valuck decided to be at the forefront of this changing trend in medicine and became one of the first physicians to be employed by Hannibal Regional Medical Group (HRMG), an affiliate of Hannibal Regional Hospital. “It wasn’t a hard decision to make, to go to work for HRMG. I have always had tremendous respect for the leadership team and the advancements they’ve made to provide quality care in our community.”
Dr. Valuck attributes his success to three key components: love, community, and leadership. “It’s much easier to be successful when you love what you do for a living.” After 30 years, he still has a profound passion and love for helping his patients. “The most rewarding part of my job is seeing improvement in my patients’ health.” The second key to success is embracing the community. “I can’t stress how important it is to be active in your community and to give back to your community.” The third and final component to success is leadership. In 1991 Dr. Valuck’s leadership helped transform cardiac care in this area, and his continued advocacy for healthcare has paved the way for the future.
Having been a pillar of the community in more than one way over the last 30 years, he has impacted the lives of many throughout northeast Missouri. From the thousands of patients he has treated during his career, the fellow parishioners of Immanuel Baptist Church where he serves as a deacon and have celebrated in worship with him, or other civic leaders who have served on numerous boards with him – Richard Valuck’s influence is far-reaching. One thing is for certain, Dr. Valuck is “The Heart of Hannibal.”
With 30 years of experience doing what he loves, Dr. Valuck is still just as passionate about his work as he was on that first day. He is grateful for the opportunity to help so many and says, “Thank you, to all of my patients for trusting me with your care and the care provided by Hannibal Regional. I love how the community has supported me and my family and we love serving our community. I encourage everyone to live a healthy lifestyle.”
To schedule an appointment with Dr. Valuck or one of his colleagues in the Cardiology Department at HRMG, call (573) 629-3500.