PORT TOWNSEND — Dr. Joseph Mattern, Jefferson Healthcare chief medical officer and primary care physician, has been recognized for his work by the Washington Rural Health Association.
Mattern was awarded the 2019 Dr. John Anderson Memorial Award for Outstanding Rural Health Care Practitioner by the Washington Rural Health Association.
The award recognizes a direct service provider’s leadership in bringing health services to rural populations. Factors taken into consideration include involvement in the community and lasting contributions to the health care system.
“In a world that often focuses on the business of delivering care, Dr. Mattern is the voice of our providers — and represents the heart of medicine,” said Brandie Manual, chief patient safety and quality officer at Jefferson Healthcare hospital.
She nominated Mattern because he “did not enter the role for the title or the income, but because of his genuine compassion and advocacy for our physicians and providers. He has the unique ability to understand the importance of improving the experience for our providers delivering care.”
Mattern has been a driving force for several critical access hospitals to participate in an accountable care organization.
This work encourages rural hospitals to address value-based care, population health and the importance of addressing social determinants of health.
Mattern is a graduate of MCP Hahnemann School of Medicine at Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia, Pa.
He is a board-certified family medicine physician as well as a certified hospice medical director.
He joined Jefferson Healthcare in 2003 and has held multiple leadership roles there, including his current role of chief medical officer (2011) and hospice medical director (2003).
Mattern is also the medical director for Home Health and Hospice where he identified the need for palliative care.
As a rural community, funding was a barrier for implementing a palliative care service in Jefferson County, which has an aging population and high rates of chronic disease. Mattern began the Palliative Care Telemedicine project with the Department of Health and secured funding through the Jefferson Healthcare Hospice Foundation.
The program has been successful locally and across the state.
The award is given in the name of Dr. John Anderson, a leader in the development of a system to ensure that health care providers have an opportunity to work in rural communities of Washington state.
He practiced medicine in Cle Elum for 33 years. Since 2010, the Washington Rural Health Association has given the award to an individual or organization that has made a significant positive impact on rural health.
Jefferson County Reporter Jeannie McMacken can be reached at 360-385-2335 or at [email protected].