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Serving Our Community Since 1986.
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Medical Staff:

Surprise Valley Hospital is staffed by a physician 24 hours a day. The clinic is open for outpatient visits - Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, excluding holidays. At all other times, there is a physician on call for emergency services.

Our knowledgeable medical staff is committed to providing the best possible medical care available. If a sudden medical condition arises, the clinic staff can usually work you in to the schedule on the same day.

Meet the Medical Staff:

Dr. Gary Haffner, MD
Medical Director

Dr. Gary Haffner, MD

Dr. Haffner attended medical school at Loma Linda University. He graduated in 1978 and did a rotating internship through the University of Arkansas. He did work in the refugee camps along the Thailand Cambodia border in 1980. He studied biophysics at UC Berkeley from 1981-1983. From 1986-1988 he worked with the Sacramento county HIV program.

He did a residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Nevada Reno from 1988-1992.  He took a Fellowship in Infectious Diseases at UC San Francisco, Mt Zion campus, 1993-1995. From 1997-2005 he worked in the California Corrections system where he had the opportunity of treating hundreds of patients with Hepatitis C. In 2004 he took training in Tropical Medicine in Peru and received a certificate in Tropical Medicine. In 2005 he moved to Saipan where he practiced medicine in the tropics for a year as chairman of the department of Medicine at the Commonwealth Hospital for the Marianas Islands.

In 2006 he returned to California where he worked as a hospitalist and Infectious Diseases Consultant.  In 2009 he moved to Cedarville. He is currently the Medical Director for the hospital. He is also involved in bringing telemedicine to Surprise Valley and is hoping soon to offer his Infectious Diseases services in this format.

Dr. Valerie Dickerson, MD

Dr. Valerie Dickerson, MD

Dr. Valerie Dickerson is a Board Certified Family Practice Physician who starting working at Surprise Valley Health Care District last fall. She went to medical school at the University of Nevada Reno and completed her residency at the University of Wisconsin in Eau Claire. After that, Dr. Dickerson worked for the next 17 years in Indian Health Services and Tribal Health in Nevada. She also worked in private and group practice in both Gardnerville and Minden, Nevada. She now lives in Lake City with her husband Tom Ward. They are the parents of 3 adult sons. They also have 8 goats and 2 dogs. Dr. Dickerson sees patients from newborn to old age on Tuesdays. Please call the clinic to make an appointment with Dr. Dickerson or any of our fantastic providers.


Stephen Johnson, FNP

Stephen Johnson, FNP

Steven Johnson went to Lassen College before going to UC Davis where he majored in Biology, graduating in 1974. He then worked as an EMT in Redding for a year before taking a teaching position where he taught high school biology and math for 1 year. Steven returned to college at Chico State where he majored in Nursing working with his preceptor, Dr. Kenneth Korver of Susanville, graduating in 1980. Steven then moved to Haiti where he spent 2 years working at Hopital Lumiere (Hospital of Light) as an RN. He returned to UC Davis in 1983 to earn his PA FNP, graduating in 1985; and then returned to Haiti where he worked as the Clinical Director for Dispensaire Luminere for 7 years.

During his time in Haiti, Steven says he had enough excitement for many lifetimes having survived 7 coups and numerous floodings. In 1992, Steven moved back to California where he worked at Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital in cardiac surgery with Dr. Korver’s son who had become a cardiac surgeon. In 1993, Steven began working at Surprise Valley Health Care District in both the hospital and clinic for 10 years. In 2003, Steven’s wife, Margarette was accepted to Dental Hygienist school in Fresno, so they moved again and Steven worked at Madera Community Hospital for the next 3 years. Starting in 2006, Steven worked at Plumas District Hospital for 8 years before returning to Cedarville in 2014.

Steven states he likes the caring people here in Surprise Valley; enjoys the beauty of the area by hiking, fishing and being outdoors as much as possible; and finds this to be a great place to raise kids and eventually retire in serenity. On the weekends, Steven travels to Redding see his wife who works in Hoopa.




In Memory of:

Dr. Lois Roberts, MD
1922 - 2007
Dr. Lois Roberts

Dr. Lois Roberts, M.D. was an extraordinary person as well as physician. Before coming to Surprise Valley, she worked as a physician in Angola and Ethiopia for many years. She delivered nearly 4,000 babies during her career and saved many lives. She was often the driving force that kept the Surprise Valley Hospital open. Now a fund created in her name seeks to take up where she left off. To learn more about her extraordinary life and the fund, please visit

Dr. D. T. Matthews, MD
Radiologist - 1930 - 2013
Dr. Dewey T. Matthews, M.D.

Dr. Dewey T. Matthews, M.D. attended Baylor Medical School in Houston, Texas. He completed his residency and opened a Family Practice in Tacoma, Washington. After 9 years, he went back and completed a residency in Radiology through the University of Oregon Medical School.

Upon completion, he started working for Klamath Radiology Associates which provided services to Merle West Hospital. In 1972, Dr. Matthews started to cover the radiology needs of Lakeview, OR, Alturas, CA, and Cedarville, CA. He has been making the drive to Surprise Valley ever since. In 1987, he and his wife moved to Fall River Mills, CA. He currently provides services to Mayers Memorial Hospital, Modoc Medical Center, and Surprise Valley Health Care District.

Dr. Matthews was a friend, advocate, and strong supporter of the Surprise Valley Health Care District. His kindness, intelligence, generosity, and sense of humor will be greatly missed.


 Thank you to our contributors.


How can I give?

Dr. Lois Roberts

Dr. Roberts Fund

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