Provider Feature: John D. McCarter M.D.

Provider Feature

John D. McCarter M.D., a new addition to the Valley team at the Provo Grandview Office, is a board-certified physician with extensive experience. He completed his Bachelor’s Degree in Exercise Physiology/Medicine from Brigham Young University before earning his medical degree from Ohio State University College of Medicine. He then completed his residency at Akron General Medical Center in Akron, Ohio. He has been a practicing physician in Utah County since 2011. We loved getting to know more about the Dr. McCarter that so many of our patients love!

Why did you choose to become an OB/GYN?

I always knew I was going to be a doctor, but didn’t know what kind until Medical School. In fact, one of the specialties that I thought there would be NO WAY I’m doing was Obstetrics, until rotations my third year. I love surgery, I love operating, I love using my hands and you get to do a lot of that in the Gynecology part of our job. When you add delivering babies on top of that, it’s just fun, happy medicine! On one hand in Obstetrics, our patients are healthy and it’s a good time for them. On the other hand with Gynecology, when we do surgeries, it’s not to prolong life for just 6 months or something like that, we are going to cure problems and give women a brand new life. For example, if we do a hysterectomy for someone who has been bleeding for years and years and years, suddenly they don’t have the problem anymore and it completely changes their life! We get to fix things. I love that!

 What has been a memorable delivery for you?

When I was a third year medical student, we had a lady who had twins. The twins shared a placenta and the mother had to go to Denver (from Ohio) for a laser procedure to separate the placenta’s. However, within a few weeks, she went into labor. I went in with the high risk team and did that c-section and got to see where the placenta’s had been separated. The amazing part of that work is that it saved both babies—one or both of them would have died if they hadn’t done that. Even though the mother didn’t go all the way to term, she was able to carry her babies so they could be born alive. They both lived and did great! To see that miracle, not only all the hands-on procedures to save those babies, but to see them actually be born and do well, was remarkable! This is miracle work!

What do you love about Valley Women’s Health?

The freedom to practice the way I feel is best for my patients. I joined Valley Women’s Health about 1 year ago. Before joining Valley I was with another company that allowed no freedom whatsoever—I did what they said, when they said. I’ve wanted to be a doctor my whole life and that’s not what I had signed up for. If there were things I thought would be beneficial for my patients, I wasn’t allowed to do them. Joining Valley gave me freedom to help my patient the way I feel is best for them. Every patient is different, so to tailor care to each patient is exhilarating! Our job is not a cookie cutter thing. Instead of just following protocol to fix a bleeding issue, I can work with the patient to figure out the problem and fix it according to what’s really going on.

I also work with spectacular colleagues that I would trust with my own wife! In fact, my oldest daughter was delivered by one of the physician’s down in Provo. She was born at Utah Valley Hospital 16 years ago. I remember when she was born thinking, “That’s what an OB does? Maybe I’ll look into this!” He was great. To join Valley Women’s Health and say that I joined the premiere group in the area, where we have almost every specialty is rewarding. If I have a patient with pelvic floor problems, there’s a Urogynecologist I can send them to. If we diagnosed a cancer, we have someone we can send them to. Having a group you can trust is huge!

What is your favorite thing about being an OBGYN?

The diversity. Every day is different. I wake up in the morning having no idea what’s going to happen that day. It’s awesome! I’m way to ADD to do the same thing every day. I mean, here it is at 9 a.m. and I had no idea the morning would start like this. I woke up knowing we had a scheduled c-section, but there had been a patient that had been pushing for 3 hours. I didn’t know how I was going to get that baby out. I was hoping she would be delivered long before. When I arrived at the hospital, I realized she was going to need some help. We went back to do the c-section and it went fairly routine. Then I go out and we have use the vacuum to deliver the other one. She delivered the baby after pushing 3 ½ hours and is crying because she didn’t need a c-section, her baby is here and everyone is healthy. It’s already been a good day!

It can be difficult when multiple patients need you at the same time. Dr. Harward and I run our practice a little different than the others—we see our own patients, we deliver our own patients. We don’t have enough physicians to have one doctor stay at the hospital. It can be hard. Yesterday I had 4 deliveries. I ended up being really behind in my afternoon clinic. My patients understand that I may be late, but when it’s their turn to have their baby, I’m going to be there for them. Yes, it’s challenging, but we make it work and we drive fast.

What do you wish all women could know?

Women need to be vigilant about their own health. They are selfless and are always thinking of their husbands, kids or neighbors. However, they need to think about and take care of themselves. We’re here to ensure they have the best health. When women are healthy, it makes it easier to take care of other. If they get sick, then how can they do that? That’s what we’re here for. If a woman is bleeding all the time, it makes it difficult for her to perform the tasks she needs to because she has to take care of the bleeding. We can fix that so she doesn’t have to worry about it anymore. I think I wish women would more vigilant in their own health and call us because that’s what we’re here for.

What is considered your specialty?

Infertility. I actually run a fairly large infertility population here and it’s because I do almost everything for free. It’s hard for me when people say, “I want another child, but I can’t pay $10,000 to see a Reproductive Endocrinologist.” I agree! That stinks! I’m here to help you. We do multiple ultrasounds and even artificial inseminations here in office. There are minimal costs involved with medication and some of the prep we have to do, but it’s minimal compared to fertility specialists. People ask me how I can do this for such minimal cost, but seeing them on the schedule as a new OB visit makes me happy! A lot of insurance don’t cover fertility costs and that’s really unfortunate because there are many women who struggle with infertility. That’s why I’m here, whether insurance pays for it or not.

What else would you like people to know?

We love pregnant women! I walk around and say, “She’s not my patient. She should be!” We really take our patients and their pregnancy personally—their pregnancy and building their family is personal to us! When things go well and they have a great delivery, we are as excited as they are. When things go bad, and unfortunately they do sometimes, that hurts us as much as it hurts them. We want women to have the best experience as possible. That’s why when we see women that aren’t coming here, they should be coming here. I’m married and have 4 daughters, so I’m ingrained in this women’s world. When I see patients, I see my wife and my daughters and say, “If this situation was this was my daughter, how would I want her taken care of?” They are going to get married and move away and someone better take care of my girls as well as I take care of my patients. That’s why I want women to come here, because that’s how we treat them. We’ll give them the best care possible!

Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest?

Past- George Washington, I am fascinated with the divinity in the creation of the United States.  Now- President Russell Nelson, a doctor that is now the prophet. I’d ask him- How?

What is something most people don’t know about you?

I was 3 years old when I told my parents that I was going to be a doctor.  Although it varied what kind of doctor-at 1 point I wanted to be a flight surgeon in the Navy so that I could also fly a jet fighter-I always knew that I was going to do this.  I was the only 8-year-old that I knew that got medical encyclopedias as a gift.

Do you have a favorite sweet treat?

Snickerdoodle cookies

Tell us about where you grew up and a little about your family

I was born and raised in Boise, Idaho.  My wife and I were even delivered by the same obstetrician 10 months apart.  I am married to an amazing woman for the last 17+ years. I have all daughters, age 15, 13, 11, 7.  My family helped my oldest daughter fight and beat cancer during the summer/fall of 2017.

What song can always put you in a good mood?

Pretty much anything from Def Leppard and the other awesome 80’s Hair Bands

If you had 30 minutes of free time, what would you do?

Probably sneak in a nap!

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