Access Family Care Announces Kansas City University’s John Paulson, DO, as Interim Chief Medical Officer

Image Credit: Drew Kimble, 12 Eighty-One Photography

(Joplin, MO)Access Family Care has announced John Paulson, DO, PhD, as interim chief medical officer. In this role, Paulson serves as Access Family Care’s lead expert on medical and public health topics, guiding staff through health policies and organizational management.

Paulson graduated from Oklahoma State University Center for Health Science with a doctor of osteopathic medicine degree as well as a PhD in Biomedical Science with emphasis in pharmacology and physiology. Prior to medical school, he worked as a forensic scientist for the Federal Bureau of Investigation, New Mexico State Police, and Tulsa Police Department. Paulson appeared on A&E’s Cold Case Files to explain the impact trace evidence had one of his high-profile cases. Following medical school, he completed residency at Cox Family Medicine in Springfield, Missouri.

He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP). Currently, he serves as the chair of Primary Care at Kansas City University’s (KCU) Farber-McIntire Campus in Joplin. He is a core faculty member of the Freeman/KCU Family Medicine Residency. He is a past-president of the Missouri Academy of Family Physicians, and the Community Clinic of Southwest Missouri’s board of directors in Joplin. Dr. Paulson has completed the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine (AACOM) Osteopathic Health Policy Fellowship and the AAFP Leading Physician Wellness certificate program.

“I am honored to serve the community in this capacity. I believe strongly in the mission that defines Access Family Care — a commitment to improve the health of the medically underserved of greater southwest Missouri through direct services and collaborative efforts,” said Paulson. “It aligns well with KCU’s mission of improving the well-being of the communities we serve. This partnership will allow for enhanced cooperation and planning so that both organizations can successfully fulfill our missions. I look forward to working with the Access team to provide care for our neighbors in Joplin and the surrounding areas.”

“Dr. Paulson has proven himself as an effective leader as chair of Primary Care at KCU-Joplin. Additionally, his years providing care for families in the Joplin area as a practicing physician position him well for this role. KCU is pleased to collaborate with Access Family Care in this way,” said Kenneth Heiles, campus dean for KCU-Joplin College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Don McBride, Chief Executive Officer of Access Family Care, said, “Having a physician of Dr. Paulson’s caliber is a testament to the quality care we strive to provide every day. Dr. Paulson has demonstrated himself to be an advocate for those in need of better healthcare policy. The strengthening of the relationship between Access, Dr. Paulson, and KCU is a win for all people in southwest Missouri. We recognize our fortune in having KCU College of Medicine and Dentistry in Joplin. As Dr. Paulson mentioned, service to the underserved is key to our mission. We believe our partnership will improve health for the entire region.”

About Access Family Care: 

Access Family Care is a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) serving the people of southwest Missouri with Clinics in Lamar, Carthage, Joplin, Neosho, Anderson, Cassville, and Aurora. Last year, Access Family Care provided health services to more than 26,000 people across our area. With more than 270 employees, Access Family Care has grown to become one of the larger FQHC’s in the State of Missouri.

About Kansas City University

Kansas City University, founded in 1916, is a fully accredited, private not-for-profit health sciences university with Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine, Biosciences and a developing College of Dental Medicine. The College of Osteopathic Medicine is the eighth largest medical school in the U.S., the ninth most impactful medical school for primary care for the nation, the tenth most affordable of private medical colleges, and the leading producer of physicians for the State of Missouri. The College of Osteopathic Medicine has two sites strategically located on the University’s campuses in Kansas City and Joplin, Missouri, to address the growing needs of both urban and rural populations. The University offers multiple graduate degrees; a doctor of osteopathic medicine; a doctor of psychology in clinical psychology; a master of arts in bioethics; a master of science in the biomedical sciences; a master of business administration in partnership with Rockhurst University; a new master of public health in partnership with the University of Nebraska Medical Center; and plans to seat the first doctor of dental medicine students in 2023.


Haley Reardon, Manager of Marketing and Communications
Kansas City University

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