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    Fathers and Sons Help Bolster Health Care in Rural Region

    Mark Fegley, MD, is following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather providing vital health services to the northern reaches of the St. Luke’s University Health Network.


    “It’s pretty remarkable that I work at the two hospitals where my dad and grandfather were passionate about expanding rural healthcare access,” said Dr. Fegley, a St. Luke’s critical care and anesthesiology physician at its St. Luke’s Carbon and Miners campuses, among other locations.


    Dr. Fegley was a member of the first class of the Temple/St. Luke’s School of Medicine, which graduated in 2015. The medical school, at St. Luke’s University Hospital in Fountain Hill, is the Lehigh Valley’s first and only four-year medical school. He returned to St. Luke’s after completing a four-year residency in critical care and anesthesiology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.


    The 37-year-old resident of Center Valley shares his elders’ passion for improving health services access in those areas that historically suffered from a dearth of advanced medical services. These are being remedied since St. Luke’s rescued the struggling Blue Mountain Health System, in 2018, and Coaldale Hospital (renamed St. Luke’s Miners Campus), in 2000.


    William Fegley, Jr., Dr. Fegley’s father, who was born nearby and lived in Tamaqua for many of his pre-college years, has long been a supporter of the Carbon County community, as a businessman and 13-year board member of Gnaden Huetten Memorial Hospital. He’s now a trustee of the new St. Luke’s Carbon Campus, which he calls “a godsend,” for the health of the community.


    Dr. Fegley’s grandfather, William Fegley, Sr. was born and spent most of his life in Tamaqua. As a longtime member of the Lions Club there, he was instrumental in bringing advanced medical services to Coaldale Hospital after it was turned over to the community by the state. He spent five years as its board chairman following its merger with St. Luke’s University Health Network in 2000.


    He passed away in St. Luke’s Miners Campus in 2015, where a room was named for him in honor of his service there.