Get to Know General Surgeon Dr. Jeffrey Johnson M.D. - Brookings Health System

A little bit about myself. I grew up in Denver, Colorado. So I am a mountain boy, mountain guy. I miss the mountains a lots. But after high school I moved to North Dakota, where I went to the University of Dakota, which is where my ties to this region stem from. That's where I met my wife and her family actually relocated to Sioux Falls. In my free time, most of the time I like to cook because I can do it at home and I can kind of judge how much time I have to do it. Because with two small children and my current job, I don't have a lot of free time. But spending time with my family, trying to get down to Denver as much as I can, those are the things I like to do.


Where Did You Receive Your Education And Perform Your Residency?

Well that's somewhat complicated. Again, I went to the University of North Dakota for a little while. I did under-graduate work in aviation and I decided I was going to be a doctor. Moved back to Colorado, went to University of Colorado, that's where I got my undergraduate biology degree. And I was little older at that point and I knew I wanted to go to medical school but I kind of wanted to do something different. So I sent an application off to a Caribbean medical school. It was the only place I applied to. I got in and started within three months. I spent 20 months on a little island, kind of on the northeastern part of Caribbean Island called Seba, which is where the school was, and it was absolutely fantastic. It's like a mountain coming out of the ocean, it was a volcano. The island itself had the villages all around, kind of the shoulders and the medical school was brand new, had beautiful facilities, and it was really one of the best decisions I ever made.

But the way that works is, so medical school is two parts. First part is books, lectures, tests, didactics. The second part is where you actually are in a hospital rotating through the different specialties. That portion I did in Kansas City, Missouri which is where the school was affiliated with University of Missouri, Kansas City, a medical school there in Kansas City. So I did my second two years there and then I ended up staying there for residency on the Missouri side of Kansas City.

What Is Your Specialty Here At Brookings Health System?

My specialty at Avera, here in Brookings is I'm a general surgeon. What that means is I did a five year training program after residency where I learned how to perform a variety of operations on all different parts of the body. Mainly the abdomen and the abdominal wall, but also the skin, some of the endocrine glands. And I also have a lot, I have quite a bit of training on how to take care of trauma patients, and I have training in how to take care of patients in the ICU.


Why Did You Choose General Surgery As Your Area Of Practice?

I chose general surgery because I think it has the broadest scope of practice. You have to know a lot of medicine, that is how to treat patients with medicine but then you also add in treating patients with surgery. Which is one of my, one of the things I hold most dear. Partially because it's simple right? Somebody's appendix needs to come out, I take their appendix out. As opposed to blood pressure, which is do we go this way? Do we go this way with medicines? It's much more complicated.


Would You Recommend Brookings Health System?

I would recommend Brookings Health System as a place to have any kind of medical care. Because it's... people who want to come to Brookings health system live in Brookings. And I would just tell them that there is absolutely no reason for you to go anywhere else. This hospital has top-notch facilities, the nursing care is fantastic. The physicians are talented and well educated and well trained. There is really no reason to go anywhere else.