From the pages of
Sublette Examiner
Volume 6, Number 27 - September 28, 2006
brought to you online by Pinedale Online

Central emergency facility proposed

by Cat Urbigkit

Family nurse practitioner Leslie Rozier of Pinedale gave the Sublette County Rural Health Care District Board a summary of the recently held primary-care provider meeting. The result of the meeting, which involved health care professionals from throughout the county, was a set of recommendations designed to strengthen health care services in the county.

Immediate action items include:

• The need for the RHCD to clarify whether it intends to return to a private practice model with subcontracting for services at each clinic; or continue to transition to county-administered services as recent board action has initiated; or some combination of the two. The providers noted that the board needs to resolve private practice competition issues in the Big Piney area.

• The RHCD should hire three doctors as soon as possible to fill the positions needed in Pinedale to provide round-the-clock coverage.

Items of intermediate attention, according to the provider group, include the need to provide for three primary needs:

• primary care services for patients with scheduled appointments;

• urgent care for walk-in patients during the day; and

• emergency room services provided by certified emergency medical providers 24-hours a day, seven days a week.

The group recommended that providing emergency care at both ends of the county around the clock is extremely difficult to achieve and expensive. The group recommended that the board move toward having one central facility that will provide 24-hour emergency services.

The provider group asked the board to consider that the duplication of expensive medical support services may be unrealistic, and that one centralized county emergency facility with expanded outpatient support services would meet the needs of the county.

Rozier noted that the providers in the group enjoyed meeting to discuss the needs of the county and would like to remain involved, an item the RHCD encouraged.

Physicians assistant Kris Roork told the board that progress is being made in finding doctors to come to Pinedale. Roork is part of the group of providers who are interviewing candidates and making recommendations to the RHCD board on hiring. She said that two new physicians would soon be coming to Pinedale. The board requested that the group also approach Dr. Douglas LaSuer to learn his interest in the possibility of a full-time position in Pinedale, since he’s leaving the Marbleton clinic.

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