After graduating from MU’s medical school, Dr. Barbe completed residency in family medicine at the University of Kansas’ affiliated program at St. Joseph Hospital in Wichita, Kan. Following residency, he returned to his hometown in southern Missouri and established a family medicine practice, which expanded to two sites with several physicians.
In 1999, Dr. Barbe merged his practice with Mercy Clinic in Springfield, Mo. He is now the regional division president of the integrated group, which consists of 650 physicians in 100 locations in southwest Missouri and northwest Arkansas. Dr. Barbe also serves on the executive council for Mercy health system, which was ranked No. 1 in the nation among Integrated Medical System’s Top Integrated Health Networks in 2007, 2009 and 2012.
Dr. Barbe has been a member of the American Medical Association (AMA), Missouri State Medical Association (MSMA) and American Academy of Family Physicians for more than 25 years. He was elected to the AMA Board of Trustees in 2009 and has served as a member of the MSMA board continuously for more than 20 years, serving as chair in 2003 and president in 2005. He was a delegate from Missouri to the AMA from 1997 to 2009 and is past chair of the delegation. Dr. Barbe served two terms on the AMA Council on Medical Service, serving as its chair from 2008 to 2009. During his tenure on the council, he participated in the development of much of the AMA policy on coverage of the uninsured, health care system reform, Medicare reform and health insurance market reform.
Dr. Barbe has been honored for his service in family medicine by receiving the Missouri Family Physician of the Year Award in 1993. He was also instrumental in expanding MU’s Rural Track Pipeline Program to southwest Missouri, and he serves as an important advocate for MU’s plan to increase medical student class size by creating a clinical campus in Springfield.