Olympic Medical Center agrees to recruit cardiologist

By Rob Ollikainen
Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES — Olympic Medical Center’s governing board has signed a recruitment agreement with Seattle-based Swedish Medical Center to bring another cardiologist to the North Olympic Peninsula.

The new doctor will be a Swedish employee who works full time at the Olympic Medical Physicians Specialty Clinic in Sequim.

He or she will join full-time cardiologists Drs. Jim Emery and Kara Urnes of Olympic Medical Physicians and the team of Swedish-affiliated visiting physicians who work part time in Sequim.

“The agreement is just like our successful neurology recruitment agreement, except in this case, Olympic Medical Center and Swedish Medical Center will share expenses,” said Dr. Rebecca Corley, OMC chief physician officer.

OMC affiliated with the Seattle-based health care giant in October 2011 to bring more health care services, including cardiology, to the Peninsula.

$295,000 salary

Swedish also is assisting OMC with the implementation of a electronic health records system.

The new cardiologist’s salary will be about $295,000 plus incentives and benefits, Corley said. The recruitment cost will not exceed $25,000.

“The board’s been very interested in this,” said Dr. John Miles, OMC board chairman.

Hospital officials said expanding cardiology will be an area of focus next year.

In another unanimous vote, the seven OMC commissioners approved the purchase of $97,190 in automated urinalysis equipment.

“This represents a real move forward in our technology, and we’re getting a good price for it, much less than we budgeted this year,” said Dr. Scott Kennedy, OMC chief medical officer.

Lab Director Steve Blackham said the upgrade to automated technology is like going from X-rays to CT scans.

“One of our biggest challenges in the laboratory is our turnaround time in our urinalyses,” Blackham said.

“It’s because looking at the urine sediment is extremely labor intensive.”

Earlier starting time

Hospital commissioners also voted to amend their bylaws to move the starting time of their first meeting of each month from 6 p.m. to 12:30 p.m.

The change will take effect in January.

OMC’s elected board meets the first and third Wednesday of each month in Linkletter Hall in the lower conference area of the hospital at 939 E. Caroline St., Port Angeles.

The second meeting of the month will continue to start at 6 p.m.

Commissioner John Beitzel, who introduced the resolution, said the reason for the change was convenience for staff and board members.

“I think it’s a worthwhile experiment, frankly,” Beitzel said.

“We can see if it works. If it doesn’t work, we can do just as we did and change it to something else.”

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Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5072, or at rollikainen@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: December 06. 2012 5:38PM
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