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“He was a Brilliant Physician”

“He was a Brilliant Physician”
September 30
08:58 2022

By John Christian Hopkins

The suicide of Dr. Zachary P. Stamile caught his family, friends, and colleagues at the Tuba City Regional Health Care Corporation by surprise. He gave no indication of the pain he was in, family members said.

Stamile worked at the Tuba City hospital from 2014 to 2019 and then later worked shifts in the emergency room.

His wife, Jennifer, said the tragedy underscores the inner turmoil doctors face when they fear that reaching out for help would lead to professional repercussions.

His friend, Dr. Tom Grosheider, called Stamile a “brilliant physician” and said that he lit up every room he was in.

His mother, Rosa Stamile, of Flagstaff, is a retired nurse. She said dealing with Covid-19 and watching patents die was hard on her son.

Still, he hid his depression from the family, she added.

Dr. Kathleen Harner, an OBGYN physician at TCRHCC, said sometimes doctors take better care of their patients than they do of themselves.

Data suggests that one million patients in the U.S. lose their doctor to suicide every year, Harner said.

Experts say that physicians have one of the highest suicide rates of any profession. It is believed that half of all physicians have known another doctor who has talked of, attempted to, or committed suicide.

It’s an issue that isn’t spoken about very much, Rosa Stamile said. She hopes her son’s death will change that.

“We don’t want Zach to be forgotten.”

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