Emergency Medicine physicians Autumn Loomis and Jennie Hooper help those in need at St. Luke’s Wood River

Drs Autumn Loomis and Jennie Hooper joined St. Luke’s Wood River (SLWR) Emergency Department (ED) in 2022 and are thrilled to call the Wood River Valley home while helping residents and visitors alike in their time of need. Loomis was born and raised in Hailey and graduated from Wood River High School in 1998. She attended the University of Michigan for her undergraduate degree before going to medical school in San Antonio, Texas and completing her residency training in Louisville, Kentucky. Since then, she’s worked in numerous locations across the US and abroad. Most recently, after moving back from New Zealand, Loomis and her husband James lived in Boston for a few years before she came back home to Idaho. Hooper is originally from Los Angeles but has lived all over the country including San Diego, Washington DC, Charleston, SC, and Fort Collins, CO. She has two sisters, one of whom lives in Hailey. Hooper adds, “I come from a family of all lawyers and am the first on either side to go into medicine.” Hooper received her Bachelor of Science in Cognitive Science with a concentration in Neuroscience from University of California, San Diego. She earned her medical degree at George Washington University in Washington, DC and completed her internship and residency at Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston.  Hooper came to SLWR from Oregon and was previously in Wyoming and Colorado for numerous years. She is particularly interested in Wilderness Medicine, Pre-Hospital/Emergency Services as well as Teaching and Academics.

After studying microbiology at the University of Michigan, Loomis became interested in medicine after traveling overseas and seeing the impact of untreated diseases. She explains, “I wanted to be able to continue the science aspect while having a direct, personal impact on peoples’ lives. While I loved all my rotations in medical school, I quickly realized that in emergency medicine, we have the opportunity to take care of everyone and everything.” Hooper explained, “I love being able to take care of patients of all ages and I love the variety of what I see and do every day.”

Both Hooper and Loomis expressed that they feel fortunate to be a part of the SLWR Emergency Department, especially since openings in the ED do not arise very often. Hooper commented, “St. Luke’s is a great organization and Wood River feels like a big family.” Loomis added, “I am enjoying working with such an amazing ED group and there’s terrific collaboration amongst the entire medical staff as well.  After being at a very busy and large community hospital outside of Boston, SLWR is a nice change of pace. While our shifts can be just as busy, being able to sit down with patients and dedicate more time to each visit is very rewarding. I also appreciate the fantastic resources SLWR has as a critical access hospital, as well as the amazing community support.”

Family is important to both Hooper and Loomis and it’s clear the Valley is a great fit for them.  Hooper explains, “I have been coming to the Sun Valley area for over 40 years and one of my life goals was to become a permanent resident. I love the outdoors, the culture, the people! My sister and father moved here a few years ago and it is great to be close to family again after so long.” Loomis said, “Even after living in multiple places, I have always considered the Wood River Valley home and knew I wanted to move back one day. Most of my family is still in Idaho so being closer to them is wonderful.” She adds, “The valley has definitely grown a lot but has still kept the small-town feel. I love encountering people I know (or even patients I treated in the ED) at the post office, grocery store, or out on the trails.  This closeness is something I greatly missed after moving away. It’s just such a nice community feel here.”  Hooper loves traveling, spending time outdoors, and live music. She adds, “I just adopted a rescue dog and we have been having a great time exploring.”