Among the School of Osteopathic Medicine’s (UIWSOM) historic red brick buildings, one in particular stands out. Just to the west of the grand main building is the Eduardo Caballero M.D. Building, the UIWSOM campus’ only named building. Housing the anatomy lab and large interactive classroom, it’s a hub of innovative thinking, where some of the day’s pressing health care needs are examined and bright minds consider whole-person care. That’s an exciting prospect for Dr. Caballero.
“When physicians from UIWSOM begin practicing in South Texas, we will see further positive change in the health of people who need it the most,” said the benefactor.
A physician from Mercedes, Texas, a small city in the Rio Grande Valley, Caballero understands first-hand the impact caring and well-trained doctors have on a community. Until 2013, Caballero practiced in a clinic where his father, a physician and surgeon, had also practiced since 1962. His brothers are also doctors. Now, he makes occasional house calls. It’s likely that the area can hardly remember a time when there wasn’t a Dr. Caballero.
He’s seen generations of patients within the same family, cared for injuries resulting from hard, physical work, and found time to treat people with limited economic resources.
“There are excellent physicians now practicing all over South Texas, of course, but we need more since the population is increasing,” said Caballero. Having more primary care physicians available to people in South Texas would provide more essential resources and help bridge the gap between urgent and preventative care.
When Caballero and his wife, Irene, discovered that the University of the Incarnate Word was starting a medical school, they saw an opportunity to help develop future physicians and address that need. When they learned more about the UIW Mission and that the faith-based medical school would emphasize compassion, they were moved to take part.
“The purpose of the Mission is a noble one emphasizing charity whenever possible,” he said. “My reward is going to be that Irene and I helped, in a small way, to bring medical care to our state and perhaps other parts of the country.”
In smaller communities, the doctor is held in high esteem primarily because he is very well known and has assisted his friends and neighbors with medical problems within a closely knit community. People remember sincere care and acts of kindness.
Helping to foster future doctors and participate in the future of health care is a rewarding experience that the Caballeros hope others take part in.
“I invite members of the medical community, the business community, educators and all citizens of South Texas in general, if they are able to, to assist the Mission, because an investment in medicine is an investment for us all.”