Vineyard Medical Care announced this week that three familiar physicians have joined the Vineyard Haven clinic, as laboratory and research work continue to expand, especially in the area of Lyme disease.

Dr. Kathleen Koehler and Dr. Timothy Tsai are both members of the staff at the medical clinic. Dr. Koehler, an internist and gastroenterologist who formerly had a private practice on the Island, will be taking patients as a primary care physician. Dr. Tsai, who formerly headed the emergency department at the Vineyard hospital, will be working in the busy walk-in clinic. And Dr. James Butterick, former chief medical officer at the Cape Cod and Falmouth hospitals, has been named chief medical officer for the clinic. Dr. Gerald Yukevich, who had been serving as medical director as well as a primary care provider, will return to full time primary care work with his many patients at the clinic, the announcement said.

“It’s difficult to run a health care delivery program in a sustainable way, so when you have a chance to get someone like Dr. Butterick to join your team, you jump at it,” said Michael Loberg, a Vineyard Haven resident and principle owner of the clinic.

Dr. Koehler was briefly in the news on the Cape for two incidents involving alcohol. She was arrested for operating under the influence in Dec. 13, 2012, and later admitted to performing a colonoscopy on March 4. 2013 while she was impaired by alcohol. Her license to practice medicine was suspended by the state Board of Registration in Medicine. She entered into treatment and after 18 consecutive months of sobriety, the board stayed her suspension last November. She remains on probation, which requires among other things that her work be supervised.

Mr. Loberg said this week that Dr. Koehler will work under the supervision of Dr. Butterick. “I think the Island will be unequivocal in its acceptance of Kathleen,” he said, adding: “I’m pleased to be able to own a clinic where we can put together a situation where someone like Kathleen can return and obviously continue to do good work.”

The clinic also continues to expand its work as a research and laboratory facility. In-house clinical laboratory testing services offered include a full range of routine tests, including the Western Blot test for Lyme disease. Fast-track testing for tick-borne diseases is also available at the clinic with same-day testing and diagnosis.

The center has also recently launched Lively, a telemetric medicine product designed to help seniors live longer independently in their homes. More information about Lively can be found at, by email at, on the medical center’s Facebook page, or by calling 508-687-9520.

The medical center also includes the Vineyard Center for Clinical Research, which is working on new laboratory tests and new clinical procedures for diseases prevalent on the Island. Three clinical trials focused on Lyme disease are now underway.

“It’s real science and work that no one else is doing on the Island. Period,” Mr. Loberg said.