Western Montana Clinic and Providence St. Patrick Hospital Announce Forming of New Obstetrics Unit

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Missoula, MT—Providence St. Patrick Hospital today announced a new collaboration with the Western Montana Clinic (WMC) Obstetrics and Gynecology physicians. The newly formed program is the culmination of months of planning and preparation for the expanded Women’s Health Program at St. Patrick Hospital.

The WMC is a long-standing and leading provider of healthcare in Missoula, with over 90 years of proven excellence. The WMC OB/GYN physician group has a combined 51 years of experience delivering specialized care to the women of Western Montana. The group, comprised of Mark Garnaas, MD; Janice Givler, MD; and Jennie Mayo, MD, will welcome a fourth partner, Robert Humble, MD, in August 2015. The physician group also includes the midwifery services of certified nurse midwife, Nancy Everett, CNM, and family nurse practitioner, Candace Hoppe, NP.

WMC President Pam Cutler, MD, welcomes this exciting new venture, “In the changing healthcare landscape, expanding collaborations and partnerships improves access for the residents of Western Montana. Providing excellent healthcare is a priority for both of our organizations, and the offer to partner with SPH in creating a new quality-focused program has been a natural fit and an incredible opportunity.”

WMC has been integral to the development of St. Pat’s Women’s Health Program. The program—which continues to grow and evolve—will feature a newly constructed 7-bed labor, delivery, recovery and postpartum suite with a dedicated cesarean section operating room. The knowledge base and expertise of the WMC physicians, in addition to the nationally renowned Providence Health & Services and Swedish Medical Center resources, will enable St. Pat’s to create a beautiful, comfortable unit using a best practice model.

Acting Medical Director, Dr. Garnaas states, “We look forward to partnering with SPH to provide the highest quality women’s healthcare in Western Montana, and look forward to delivering babies in the new labor and delivery unit.” Not only will the physician group be delivering babies in the new unit of the hospital, but they will also be relocating their outpatient practice to the downtown campus in summer of 2015. As the first surgeons to bring daVinci robotic surgery to Montana, the WMC gynecologists will continue to expand on their region, leading experience and high quality women’s surgical services at SPH as well.

Leading the Providence Women’s Health Program is new regional director, Kathy Schaefer, BSN, MSN, MMA. Kathy’s experience running two hospital campuses averaging over 400 deliveries a month, along with her 14 years of progressive leadership, will be essential in continuing the overall management and oversight of the program.

Jeff Fee, Chief Executive of Providence Health & Services Western Montana, says, “The leadership and physicians of Western Montana Clinic have been the ideal and integral piece to our larger program structure. They are Missoula community members who, with the changing marketplace dynamic, considered, as St. Pat’s did, this move necessary to maintain OB/GYN excellence in the future.”

“We’ve been serving our community for 142 years, but we haven’t delivered a baby since 1975,” said Fee. “We knew this opportunity—40 years later—allowed us to rebuild the program to our existing high-quality and award-winning standards. We had the chance to recruit the finest experts and physicians to establish the infrastructure around the landmark return of babies to St. Pat’s. We can’t wait!”

Joyce Dombrouski, Chief Acute Services Officer of Providence Health & Services Western Montana, says, “I am excited to announce that our services will include inpatient obstetrical and newborn care, an expanded inpatient and outpatient pediatric program, and outpatient obstetrical/gynecological care. But, the specifics are still forthcoming.

“In this current, competitive marketplace, we remain committed to providing excellent care and making Missoula a statewide medical destination. We have pledged an ongoing investment to keep and attract the best talent and engage the community to promote better health.”

St. Patrick Hospital and Western Montana Clinic will continue to work closely and strengthen relationships with other healthcare organizations, providers, clinics and strategic partners to ensure patients can receive a full range of services from one, coordinated healthcare system.

Construction of the unit is scheduled to be completed in June 2015, with the first babies to be delivered in the unit by August.