Meet Dr. Rachel Guild, Obstetrician and Gynecologist (OB/GYN), the newest
member of the Columbia River Women’s Center
Dr. Rachel Guild knows a good thing when she sees it, and she saw it in
her high school sweetheart, now husband, Dan Coughlin.
Born and raised in McHenry, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, Dr. Guild is
the newest member of the Columbia River Women’s Center. An OB/GYN,
she married her high school boyfriend five years ago, during her fourth
year of medical school.
The two met through friends the summer before her junior year of high school.
She remembers their first date clearly. He showed up to the movie theater
wearing cargo shorts and a Hawaiian shirt.
“I thought, ‘Who is this kid?’” she said. “But
he was charming. Over time, we fell in love with each other, with our
The two have been together ever since. After attending different colleges
for two years, he transferred to the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign,
where Dr. Guild completed her undergraduate training with a major in biology
and minor in Spanish.
Dan, a software engineer, followed her to Chicago, where she received her
medical degree and completed an internship in obstetrics and gynecology
and then to Portland, where she completed her residency at Oregon Health
& Science University (OHSU).
“He’s been very flexible,” she said. “I couldn’t
ask for a better partner or more support.”
Falling in Love with The Gorge
Just as Dr. Guild knew her husband was special when they first met, she
knew the Columbia River Gorge was something extraordinary from the moment
she saw it. She has family ties in Oregon and fell in love with the Gorge
during childhood road trips to the coast to visit her grandparents.
“My favorite part of the trip was when we crossed into Oregon on
I-84,” she said. “I thought, ‘This is the prettiest
place in the world.’”
When Dr. Guild moved to Portland to complete her residency, she wanted
to share the Gorge with her husband. It became their refuge from the city,
filled with fun hikes, great restaurants and fantastic scenery.
“I didn’t expect to be living here, but when the opportunity
arose, I was really excited about it,” she said. “The Dalles
is a really welcoming place with a close community that reminds me of
where I grew up. I feel very lucky to settle here.”
Patient-Centered Medicine at MCMC
Dr. Guild enjoys getting to know her patients. During her training in Chicago
and Portland, there was not a lot of continuity which made it difficult
to connect with patients. She is excited to develop long-term relationships
with providers and patients at Columbia River Women’s Center.
“One of my favorite things about OB/GYN is the opportunity to care
for women over the long-term, through many significant life events,”
she said. “The privilege to participate in these moments with patients
is what makes my job so rewarding. Just yesterday I got to deliver a patient
who I had taken care of since her early pregnancy. It was a really special
Early in medical school, Dr. Guild planned to pursue a career in primary
care as a family medicine physician with a focus in women’s health
and obstetrics. She loved working with her hands and was drawn to surgery,
which could help her achieve noticeable and lasting change for her patients.
This led her to choose the field of obstetrics and gynecology. Though she
chose a more specialized field, her education and interests were based
in preventative care and a global view of the whole patient. This has
shaped Dr. Guild’s philosophy of patient-centered care, based in
excellent communication and the development of a partnership with her patients.
In alignment with her desire to communicate with all her patients, Dr.
Guild has learned Spanish and can communicate well with those who are
She is nearly fluent, although when an interpreter is needed, there is
almost always a female staff member available to translate in person,
which is a great asset to Columbia River Women’s Center.
Dr. Guild’s philosophy of patient-centered care and collaboration
with her colleagues is a good fit at MCMC.
“Dr. Guild is a fantastic addition to the Columbia River Women’s
Center, “said Dr. Analene Pentopoulos, an OB/GYN at the Columbia
River Women’s Center. “She is kind, knowledgeable, compassionate
and brings a great energy to the clinic.”
Having Fun in Oregon
Dr. Guild hopes to have children of her own one day, although after years
of training to be an OB/GYN, she is enjoying her free time. She spends
most weekends visiting friends and family or entertaining house guests.
Her family is used to being spread out around the country, so they make
togetherness a priority.
“Thanks to living in such a fun and interesting place, everybody
wants to come visits us here,” she said.
When Dr. Guild is not visiting with family, she likes being in nature by
camping and hiking. She also spends time working on the house that she
and Dan purchased in The Dalles. She is looking forward to planting a
vegetable garden this spring.
“Everything grows well in Oregon, “she said.
Dr. Guild is also passionate about long-distance running. During residency,
she did two half marathons every year, but did not have much time to train.
This year, she is signing up fora half marathon in May and will enjoy
long training runs along the riverfront path near her house in The Dalles.