Chad Petersen has worked for Waterloo Fire Rescue since 1997. He began as a firefighter, then an EMT, and is now a paramedic. As a paramedic, Chad is usually the one taking care of others. This past February, he found himself on the receiving end.
During a ski trip with friends, Chad fell and broke his left collarbone. His doctor referred him to Dr. Robert Bartelt, orthopedic visiting specialist at Waverly Health Center.
“Dr. Bartelt was very professional. He said I could either let the break heal itself or he could do surgery. I decided to do the surgery,” said Chad. Dr. Bartelt added, “We discussed surgical and nonsurgical treatment. Based on his high activity level and need to get back to work quickly, we chose surgery as the best option for Chad.” Before the surgery, Chad was impressed with the care he received from the surgery staff. “They were attentive and had positive attitudes. I could tell they cared about their jobs and their coworkers because everyone helped each other out. After meeting them all, I was confident that they were all able to perform their jobs.” Dr. Bartelt removed the shattered collarbone pieces and used a metal plate and 7 screws to reconnect the bone.
“It was the first time I’ve ever been to Waverly Health Center. It’s a gem!” said Chad. Chad lives on an acreage outside of Waterloo with his wife Lori. They have two sons – Colton, who is serving in the Marine Corps overseas and Brandon, who just graduated high school. They are an active family that enjoys traveling. When each son graduated from high school, they took a bigger family vacation to celebrate the achievement. One trip was to Germany, and the other was a 12-day hiking trip at Kings Canyon National Park in California.
Being so actively-inclined, Chad wasn’t too keen on the amount of down-time he had during recovery, but understood it was what it took to get him back to his lifestyle. Chad returned to work on June 1. He’s looking forward to an upcoming vacation to Jordan with his family.
Photo: Chad, Lori and Brandon at Kings Canyon National Park