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Healthcare at the Regional Level John Hennelly, CAO, St. Louise Regional Hospital Saint Louise Makes Community Connections • Annual health clinics in partnership with Rotocare and Gardner Health Center. Community outreach events to promote stroke awareness, diabetes care, and other community health priorities. • Two breast care centers, at Saint Louise and at the De Paul Urgent Care Center, offer free digital mammograms to uninsured patients. • An annual community event to honor First Responders; local fire, police and EMS personnel who work together to keep us safe and who save lives in emergency and disaster situations. • First aid booths at annual community events like the Mushroom Mardi Gras, Gilroy Garlic Festival, and Taste of Morgan Hill. • A 2018 health and wellness fair with the Gilroy Downtown Association. 28 If we define the South County market- place to include Morgan Hill, San Martin and Gilroy, census figures show it’s less than 120,000 people. The challenge, Knopf explained, is to build a market. “Many people who live here are employed at companies to the north so they get healthcare services close to work,” Knopf said. “This might include Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, Regional Medical Center, Sutter Health, or Stanford Health.” “When it comes to healthcare, we expect to have choices,” Knopf added. “It’s not unusual for people in South County who need anything from a knee replacement to cancer therapy to say if they have a choice, they’re going to Good Samaritan Hospital or Stanford Hospital. In truth, we need to be able to afford our choices.” Modern medicine is breeding increased specialization. And specialists gravitate to urban areas where they can work in healthcare centers of excellence. In our region, Kaiser Permanente San Jose Medical Center has a 242-bed hospital, just north of Coyote Valley, with centers of excellence in genetics, spine surgery and other areas. Its Gilroy Medical Offices employ physicians trained in family medicine, internal medicine, obstetrics, pediatrics and other specialties. A significant proportion of South County residents happen to be members of Kaiser Permanente, the nation’s largest integrated health system. Kaiser has a GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2017 large member base, an efficient health- care delivery model, and it employs its doctors, who sign up to follow the Kaiser model of care and follow well- defined protocols. Best practices are implemented systemwide. “ Kaiser Permanente understands preventive medicine,” Knopf said. “They want patients to be healthy and to stay on their health plans. Their doctors combine good people skills and clinical skills. They listen carefully to patients and take the time to gather meaningful patient histories. And they encourage healthy habits.” Saint Louise Regional Hospital is our community hospital and part of the six-hospital Verity Health system. The 93-bed facility is a certified stroke center, with ER services including helicopter transport. Saint Louise provides general acute care for medical, surgical, and pediatric needs. Among its other services are diagnostic imaging, maternal child health services, nuclear medicine, orthopedic/sports medicine, and minimally-invasive surgery. The De Paul Health Center fulfills an important need as the only acute care walk-in facility in Morgan Hill. Also part of the Verity Health System, De Paul provides primary care services at a reasonable cost, with the ability to refer and transport patients to other facilities when needed. People invariably find