Picking the right doctor is an important decision. For 25 years, Walt Combs, M.D., a board certified physician at Rancho Family Medical Group, has dedicated his medical career to keeping families healthy. His patient approach is professional and caring, and he enjoys guiding individuals towards making healthier lifestyle decisions.
Choosing family medicine was the best decision Combs ever made, he said. In family medicine, he cares for patients ranging from newborns all the way to geriatrics, allowing him to meet many interesting people. Some conversations, Combs said, have taken fascinating turns when his senior patients recount their World War II tales and other historical accounts.
“My oldest patient is 106- years-old and I see him at his home,” he said. Not many know that Combs played basketball at UC San Francisco and baseball at UC Santa Barbara. He was a full-fledged athlete whose passion for sports also spurred an interest in the area of orthopedics.
At one point in his career, Combs had delivered 1,000 babies.
Currently, he has affiliations with Fallbrook Hospital, Rancho Springs and Inland Valley Hospital.
“I love my job and I love my patients,” Combs said. “I don’t know how anyone could not love medicine because it’s always interesting and challenging.”
In 25 years, Combs has witnessed amazing advancements in the medical field. The most awe-inspiring are arthroscopic surgeries.
“Gallbladder surgery is a perfect example of this,” Combs said. “Before arthroscopic surgery, patients would have a seven-day hospital stay, take eight weeks to heal, and have more than a foot-long scar. Now, they don’t even need to stay in the hospital – the advance has been tremendous.”
Another area that has advanced is pharmaceuticals. Combs said pharmaceuticals have prevented people from being admitted to the hospital and have saved millions of lives. It has addressed a montage of ailments including infections, migraines, cancer, diabetes, heart disease and more.
“I remember when every woman who had a kidney infection had to be admitted into the hospital,” Combs said. “I have not admitted a kidney infection patient in years because of the great antibiotics <available now>.”
Established in 1942, Combs said he feels privileged to be part of Rancho Family Medical Group.
“At Rancho Family Medical Group, patients will find great medicine, great doctors and people who love their jobs,” he said, noting how many of their associates volunteer for medical missions for the Haiti Endowment Fund.
Combs became involved in Haiti in the 1990s. The Haiti Endowment Fund, he said, has helped both adults and children. Focused particularly in Hinche, a desolate area, Haitians have benefited from feeding programs, water wells, schools, churches and medicine. Its mobile medical clinics have provided dental, eye, medical and surgical care that has help thousands of Haitians.
However, its efforts have accelerated since the catastrophic Jan. 12 earthquake. A week and a half after the quake, Combs flew to Hinche and stayed for a week.
“It was just terrible – there were kids with fractures that had bones sticking out – some of these fractures had not been looked at for days,” Combs said, noting how there was no blood available for transfusions. “It was devastating, but at the same time, we were able to help so many people in the middle of nowhere.”
Thankfully, some children were able to get their legs mended so they could walk again. “We had a lot of great doctors down there,” Combs said, adding how some medical professionals outside of the Rancho Family Medical Group team were there to pitch in.
Although the majority of the news stations no longer run current footage of Haiti’s recovery, Combs encourages people to reach out and help since there is still so much need. For more information on the Haiti Endowment Fund, visit
For more information on Combs and Rancho Family Medical Group, call (951) 676-4193 or visit
http://www.RanchoFamilyMed.com. The Temecula office is located at 28780 Single Oak Dr. Suite 160.
Rancho Family Medical Group also has an office in Fallbrook, at 521 E. Elder Street, Suite 103, which can be reached at (760) 728-8344.
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