Due to several factors, Amish and Mennonites suffer disproportionately from rare genetic ailments.


Dr. Holmes Morton. Photo: The Clinic for Special Children

Dr. Holmes Morton founded the Clinic For Special Children in Lancaster County in the 1980s to help the community with these diseases.

Now after 27 years, Dr. Morton is moving on:

In a letter to the Strasburg clinic’s mostly Amish and Mennonite patients, the clinic’s board of directors explains Morton’s departure.

“Over the last several years, Dr. Morton’s involvement in the Clinic has lessened as he has focused on establishing the Central Pennsylvania Clinic in Belleville, PA. Most patient care, day to day activities and research at the Clinic for Special Children has been conducted by our medical director, Kevin Strauss, MD, and a growing staff.”

Morton is held in high regard in the Amish community:

Morton was revered by the Amish he served, some of whom remember when he was the entire clinic staff: A one-man show working tirelessly to explain the onset of genetic diseases made more prevalent by generations of Amish intermarriage.

Today, the Clinic has a staff of 15 dedicated doctors, nurses, scientists and administrators who care for thousands of children in Lancaster’s Plain Communities and beyond, the letter reads.

Other patients remembered the ease of Morton’s bedside manner and his interest in their traditionally underserved community.

The Central Pennsylvania Clinic is in the “Big Valley” Amish community, about two hours from Lancaster County.

In the video below, clinic staff answer questions about serving the Amish:

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