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Dr. Kelly Gaughen

Visit the only female pediatrician of I.F.

Published online: Jun 15, 2020 Articles, Family Fun Guide
Viewed 4711 time(s)

With today’s events, it is more vital than ever to have experienced medical professionals working to advance modern medicine. Because of this, thousands of people apply to medical schools every year with the hopes of taking part in this great cause in improving the lives of others, many of these people being prospective pediatricians.

There are more pediatricians applying for medical school today than ever before. In fact, over 50% of these applicants are female. Because of this, it is much more common to see female pediatricians working today than in the past. While it is common to see this in many places throughout the world, it isn’t common in eastern Idaho. As of March 2020, Idaho Falls received Dr. Kelly Gaughen, its first female pediatrician.

About Dr. Gaughen

From an early age, Gaughen knew that she wanted to work with kids. After spending time pursuing elementary education, she decided that she would rather pursue her love for science and biology. She still loved working with children but felt compelled to go down another path with the hopes of implementing both passions into her career.

Dr. Gaughen moved to Idaho Falls after finishing her residency in Chicago. It was here where she met Antonio Gaugen, an engineer who found his first job at the Idaho National Laboratory site in Idaho Falls. With the added benefit of being closer to her family in Montana, she and Antonio moved to Idaho Falls.

The Pediatric Center

Dr. Gaughen took a position at The Pediatric Center in Idaho Falls. The pediatrician’s office  has been serving eastern Idaho residents for over 55 years. Providing pediatric care from birth to the age of 19, their goal has been to provide quality and comprehensive care to infants, children and adolescents. They are well known for their professional and knowledgeable approach to children’s health care and are a reliable source to residents around the region.

“We have an awesome team here, and a lot of us see the same patience,” said Gaughen. “Because of that, we work very closely as a team and share opinions. Patients will be able to get the best experience and care possible because of this.”

Current Health Trends

Dr. Gaughen has come into direct contact with many of the  trends that are having a profound effect on the world today.

“Chronic conditions like ADHD, depression and anxiety are much more common,” said Gaughen. “When I went to medical school, we didn’t have a strong education in this. Now much more pediatricians are having to step up to take care of these kids because of the lack of child psychologists. We now prescribe antidepressants, and 30 years ago that was a lot less common. I think there are more opportunities now for pediatricians to accommodate those with mental health issues.”

What is it that causes mental health issues in our children and adults? Many believe that it is the heavy exposure we have to electronics like cellphones, iPads and video games. However, Dr. Gaugen suggests that we shouldn’t blame it all on electronics. 

“Sometimes it is the struggle they experience, especially within the family. Although, I do think the internet is a part of it”, said Gaughen.

Regardless of what is happening in the world today, Gaughen and the rest of the experienced doctors at The Pediatric Center are going to do all they can to look out for the wellbeing of Idaho Falls residents.


Click here to continue reading the June issue of Idaho Falls Magazine.


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