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2018 Men of the Year: Dr. Jay Baker

Ozarks Community Hospital

Posted online

Dr. Jay Baker put Ozarks Community Hospital on the map for pain management.

He founded and launched the health care system’s pain clinic in 2003. Since then, it has grown to serve roughly 70 patients on a daily basis.

“I am very proud to say that my pain clinic serves many who are underserved in the medical community,” says Baker, who works as OCH’s director of pain management out of its Evergreen Clinic. “I have great pride in giving birth to this very successful pain clinic, which now serves patients in a multistate area.”

Specifically, the Operation Desert Shield/Storm military veteran points to the clinic’s work with “wounded warriors,” soldiers who were injured in the line of duty, as well folks in poorer populations.

All who suffer chronic pain are welcome, he says.

“Chronic pain has no face, as it impacts the affluent as well as those who have nothing,” Baker says.

Baker acknowledges the opioid epidemic but indicates those drugs may be needed in legitimate pain management efforts. He’s grateful to his team for keeping up to date with the issue.

“I am very proud of my team for their adherence and awareness of potential abuse and our ability to provide quality care,” he says.

When it comes to managing those employees, Baker says he abides by the golden rule.

That extends into mentorship as he helps train the next generation of health care leaders.

“As a leader in the workplace and community, I continue to encourage others to face adversity head on with strength, confidence and humility,” he says. “I am willing to give of my time to make this happen.”

Baker also rises in the community for his civic contributions.

He and his wife, Cindy Baker, are involved with nonprofit Care to Learn’s Ozark and Nixa chapters to provide health, hunger and hygiene aid in the schools.

The couple are annual sponsors of the nonprofit’s backpack program, and they have sponsored the annual Penguins and Princesses fundraiser during the past six years.

“All proceeds from this gala go directly to Ozark Care to Learn,” Jay Baker says, adding through the Sertoma Duck Race, he supports an event where the “proceeds are shared between the Care to Learn programs in Ozark and Nixa.”

Baker also is involved in the veteran services organization Wounded Warrior Project, Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, the Horses Assisting Youth Foundation, Least of These food pantry, Special Olympics and other causes.

“I remember spending a Saturday morning cleaning up a mile of the highway for Ozark Rotary and not only finding roadkill, but many other unbelievable discarded items contaminating the beauty of our roadside,” Baker says.

Baker has certification from the American Osteopathic Board of Anesthesiology, and he’s served as a member of the American Society of Anesthesiology, the Greene County Medical Society, the American Osteopathic College of Anesthesiologists, the American Osteopathic Association and the International Spinal Injection Society.

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