Travis Mettenbrink is the new CCMH Medical Clinic Director. Originally from Grand Island, Nebraska, Mettenbrink says he wasn’t always oriented to a career in healthcare.
“After graduating from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a degree in business and marketing, I went on to have a career in various aspects of the business world. There was nothing real specific about it. I was successful. On the other hand, I didn’t necessarily love who I was doing it. I felt I had a lot to give and I wanted to do that.”
From there, Mettenbrink says he decided to take a closer look at healthcare and how he might become involved.
“I wanted to be a better person and make other people better people. I started looking at the people around me. My wife is a speech pathologist and my best friend is a respiratory therapist. I thought to myself, ‘This healthcare gig is probably pretty cool.’ So I started taking some nursing courses, still unsure of what I was going to do. What ended up happening is I married my business background with my passion for healthcare.”
His growing up years had an influence on Mettenbrink he was unaware of until later.
“If you know anything about Grand Island, it is much like Denison in that it has a very diverse population. Because of that, I learned a lot growing up. Every community has very specific needs. Grand Island, because of their diverse population, had very specific needs and I see the same thing in Denison. Some of that is culturally driven and some of it comes from the jobs that are prominent in the community. I’m very comfortable with that.”
Managing physician-owned clinics is at the heart of Mettenbrink’s professional background.
“I have spent the past 12 years managing physician-owned clinics and a good chunk of that time has been spent on behavioral mental health. What led me away from that is the opportunity to expand my knowledge and be part of something bigger. I’m very passionate about mental health, but I believe that I can bring that learning experience and apply it to what we have going on at Crawford County Memorial Hospital.”
Mettenbrink says his impressions during his first 30 days of managing the CCMH Medical Clinic have been very positive.
“Coming from much smaller medical offices, I’m now part of a bigger hospital system and I take a lot of pride in that. I take a lot of pride in seeing what we’re doing for our community. I had the opportunity to visit a lot of hospital systems, a lot of medical systems. Medicine has become big business for better or for worse. But I will say that there’s something special about being at CCMH. I still get that physician-owned clinic feel and yet, on the other side, I know that I’m part of something that is growing for the better, something that is very engaged in the community and has its mission and values in line with serving the community the best way we can.”
While politics is a ticklish subject for many people, Mettenbrink says it has an outsized impact on healthcare and how it is delivered.
“Politics and politicians of all sorts have gotten involved in health care. We need to be aware of what they’re doing in Washington and how that affects what we do right here in the middle of Iowa. I’m also seeing a trend of physician-owned clinics going away. While that is unfortunate, it makes the CCMH Medical Clinic and Crawford County Memorial Hospital more important to our community and county. Customers can access much of their healthcare needs all under one roof. I think that gives us a great opportunity. I look forward to the future of growing our clinic and our offerings.”
Mettenbrink says, no matter what, customer service is key.
“Taking care of people is our number one priority. When you walk in the door, we want to make sure you feel like you’re the only patient that we are taking care of today. My philosophy is ‘you take care of people first’ and that’s on both sides of the counters and on both sides of the door. Taking care of patients first and, by the same token, taking care of our team and our employees around us. Making sure our staff are equipped with the tools they need. It all trickles down into a great patient experience. My guarantee – every patient at the CCMH Medical Clinic is going to get treated with respect by excellent medical providers and excellent support staff.”