NVH plans Town Hall meetings

Submitted by Karen Schimpf

Long Range Focus Committee

Town Hall Meetings on the physician shortage and obstetrics care: North Valley Hospital District is hosting two Town Hall meetings to discuss the physician shortage and recent developments. The first will be held at the Tonasket Seniors Center on Thursday July 18 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. The second event will be held in Oroville Seniors Center on Tuesday, July 23 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.

No OB, what now?

Confluence Health announced they will no longer be supporting obstetrics at North Valley Hospital and the lack of providers was made more severe when a second family practice physician with obstetrics privileges announced they were leaving the Tonasket Confluence clinic.

After recruiting for OB Providers unsuccessfully for several months, and in light of the additional physician departure, the NVHD Board of Commissioners, at their June 20 meeting, approved shifting recruitment from OB providers to Family Practice Providers to practice in a soon to be reestablished hospital clinic and to suspend the OB Program at NVHD.

As of Aug. 1 there will no longer be providers at North Valley Hospital with privileges to deliver babies or perform C-Sections. As women seek prenatal care their providers will inform them of their options for deliveries at Mid Valley Hospital, Three Rivers Hospital, or elsewhere.

Many of the hospital based prenatal services are still available at North Valley including ultrasounds and lab work.

Patients that present to the NVH Emergency Room after Aug. 1 will be evaluated and cared for. If the Care Team determines the expecting mother can safely be transported, they will be transferred to Mid-Valley Hospital for labor and delivery.

If the Care Team determines that it is unsafe to transport the mother, the patient will be cared for in the Emergency Department.

In all cases, except for emergencies, expecting mothers should travel to a hospital that has an OB Program. This will ensure the most comfortable and safest environment for the mother and baby.

Please consider coming to the Town Hall Meetings to discuss these topics further, or reach out to Aaron Kester at col@nvhospital.org with any questions.

Submitted by Karen Schimpf

Long Range Focus Committee