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Oyate Health Center hires Rapid City surgeon as chief medical officer
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Oyate Health Center hires Rapid City surgeon as chief medical officer


The new Oyate Health Center has hired an experienced Rapid City surgeon to serve as its chief medical officer. 

Mark Harlow will "ensure the highest standards of medical care are achieved," the Oyate Health Center and Great Plains Tribal Chairmen’s Health Board said in a news release earlier this month. 

As a chief medical officer, Harlow will oversee the management of the center's clinical operations and work as a liaison between administration and staff. He previously worked at Regional Health.

The Oyate Health Center, located at the Sioux San Hospital Campus in Rapid City, is operated by Great Plains on behalf of the Oglala and Cheyenne River Sioux tribes. Since July, Great Plains has managed about 80 percent of the hospital's $23 million operating budget (with funding from the Indian Health Service) and provided 80 percent of services, including behavioral health and the urgent care clinic. The IHS manages the remainder of the budget and medical services. Enrolled tribal members have access to both Great Plains and the IHS. 

Harlow received his medical degree from the Medical College of Wisconsin, moved to Rapid City in 1991, and has worked as an orthopedic surgeon for more than 20 years, diagnosing and treating ailments affecting muscles, bones and joints. He also treats sports injuries, degenerative diseases, tumors, infections and birth defects. 

He's received a “very positive” rating from U.S. News which publishes patient experience ratings from Fountain Analytics, which aggregates patient reviews from more than 100 websites.

Harlow is a faculty member at his alma mater and the Sanford School of Medicine, and serves as president of the board of directors for the Cornerstone Rescue Mission, medical director for the Special Olympics of South Dakota, and on the board of directors for the South Dakota State Medical Association. 

Before becoming a doctor, Harlow was "a star high school football who served as a back-up for legendary strongman Bill Kazmaier during his youth in Racine County, Wisconsin," the news release says. He then played football at Northwestern University where he competed against Joe Montana and other legends. 

— Contact Arielle Zionts at

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