Experienced Vermont Family Physician Joins Gifford Hospitalist Team

Dr. Sandy Craig

Dr. Sandy Craig

RANDOLPH – Dr. Sandy Craig brings his 17 years of family, inpatient and emergency medicine experience to Gifford Medical Center as the newest member of the hospitalist team.

Dr. Craig, who grew up in Ripton and Johnson, most recently was a family physician at The Health Center in Plainfield.

He took an indirect road to becoming a Vermont physician, however.

A 1982 graduate of the University of California at Santa Cruz, Dr. Craig studied biology and psychology but put medical school on hold while he traveled to Indonesia and Africa.

He spent two-and-a-half years teaching English at a medical school and a university, the Universitas Islam Nusantara, both in Bandung, and then doing wildlife research in Kenya.

Back in the United States, he worked for a Santa Cruz, Calif., animal hospital as a research assistant in genetics at his alma mater.

He returned to Vermont to attend medical school at the University of Vermont College of Medicine, graduating in 1992. Along the way, he worked as a firefighter in his hometown of Ripton, an emergency medical technician in Middlebury and as a nurse’s aide at Porter Medical Center. He also did a clinical elective at San Jose Pediatrics Hospital in Costa Rica and later at the Zimbabwe National Family Planning Council in Harare, Zimbabwe.

He completed his internship and residency in family medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the Department of Family Medicine. He went on to become a clinical instructor for the UNC-Chapel Hill medical school and an emergency department doctor at UNC’s Chatham Hospital for two years.

He returned to Vermont in 1998, where he has worked since as a family physician and later clinical director at Plainfield’s health center with admitting privileges at Central Vermont Medical School.

The work, says Dr. Craig, included considerable care of inpatients, or hospitalized patients.

While saddened to leave his outpatient practice in Plainfield, Dr. Craig is looking forward to delving into more inpatient work at Gifford as a member of the hospitalist team. Hospitalists are physicians and mid-level providers who care for hospitalized patients. Gifford was among the first small hospitals in Vermont to have a hospitalist practice.

“I like community medicine and I’m very interested in hospital work,” says Dr. Craig. “I’m excited to be working for a community-oriented hospital offering patients a personal touch.”

Dr. Craig is board certified by The American Academy of Family Physicians. He’s also a member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, the Vermont Medical Association, and The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. He’s returned to Asia and Africa for international relief work, including to Indonesia in 2005 following the Indian Ocean tsunami.

He diagnosed New England’s first case of Hantavirus in 2000. His clinical interests include infectious disease, sports medicine, and hospitalist medicine.

Dr. Craig lives in East Montpelier with his 10-year-old son, Riley, and in his free time enjoys skiing, hiking, paddling, and climbing.