In his career as a heart surgeon and in his role as husband and father, Richard MacArthur has viewed the human heart, as well as the fragile nature of love and life, from a distinct vantage point. Now, his candid collection of poetry, More Connections, gathers the poems he created along the way, which span his decades as a man of science and family.
With raw honesty and deep reflection, his poems are certain to reverberate with anyone who savors a look at one man’s distinct experience, and its universal connections. Whether responding to an emergency call in the middle of the night or marking the occasion of his own new beginnings, MacArthur’s exacting eye and level hand work together to craft vivid glimpses from the operating table, or from within.
About Richard MacArthur (Kansas City, Missouri & Kansas Author)
Dr. Richard (Rick) MacArthur has always had a voracious quest for information and a desire to see the world from a variety of vantage points. The study of medicine and the practice of surgery met those goals. As an undergraduate Anthropology major at the University of Kansas, the development of man and the universe set a different stage for medical school. Each course and clinical experience stimulated curiosity, a desire to contribute to a broader understanding of the human and of the nature of the physician, and a commitment to impact the potential for healing. Thus, surgery became his specialty.
Following a general surgery residency at KU Medical Center, he served four years on the staff and faculty, with broadening leadership roles at the KU Hospital and at the Kansas City VA Hospital. Seeking more depth in the specialty of surgery, he then did a residency in cardiothoracic surgery at a time of significant changes in the field. New approaches were rapidly evolving. Pediatric heart surgery, endoscopic approaches for thoracic surgery, and heart transplant provided challenges which Dr. MacArthur embraced. The American Association of Thoracic Surgery (AATS) and the Society of Thoracic Surgery (STS) recognized him as an early leader in the field of thoracoscopic surgery and he served as a primary preceptor for two years.
Knowing that the practice of surgery would always require more than technical expertise, Rick was ahead of the times in exploring the systems of care and teamwork that would contribute to positive patient outcomes and a sense of satisfaction for the professionals. He studied improvement processes, ethics, and leadership. His peers recognized his commitment and knowledge and he was elected to medical staff leadership positions. He completed a Master’s degree in Medical Management from the University of Texas.
As Dr. MacArthur’s clinical practice was shortened due to multiple sclerosis, he never lost his passion for the art and science of surgery. He serves as a faculty member in the University of Kansas School of Medicine, Department of Surgery. He delivers a seminar lecture to medical students before their first surgery rotation, using coronary artery bypass surgery as an historical example of the care of thousands of patients which is based on good education, progressive technology and multidisciplinary teamwork. His contributions to medicine span forty years. His love of surgery is timeless.