Submitted by the University of Washington Medicine and Catherine Washburn Medical Association
UW Medicine and Catherine Washburn Medical Association (CWMA) announced today that they reached a partnership agreement in which the University of Washington Medicine will assume management of Lopez Island Medical Clinic.
This past April, UW Medicine announced a similar agreement with Orcas Medical Center. While UW Medicine will manage both clinics, the two entities will continue to operate independently. UW Medicine will employ telemedicine and other new technologies while drawing on the strengths of both communities to provide the best care possible. UW Medicine has historically played a key role in the San Juan Islands through Airlift Northwest, which provides access to emergency care not otherwise available.
To ensure a successful transition, Island Hospital will continue to manage Lopez Clinic through September. UW Medicine is working with Lopez Clinic staff this week to begin the transition process.
On Tuesday, April 25, Lopez voters passed a measure creating a public hospital district that will support the clinic through property taxes. The initiative received overwhelming support with 86 percent voting in favor. The public hospital district figures prominently in the new partnership by helping to create fiscal sustainability intended to cover expected financial losses.
“The CWMA board believes the partnership with UW Medicine will be excellent for Lopez Island,” said Marty Clark, president of the CWMA. “UW Medicine is one of the premier medical providers in the United States. We are very fortunate to have their outstanding expertise and support.”
“We are very pleased to announce our partnership with the Lopez Island community,” said Dr. Brian Goldstein, chief health system officer for UW Medicine. “UW Medicine has always provided medical care in rural communities and the expanded management role with both the Lopez Island Medical Clinic and Orcas Medical Center is a natural extension of our commitment to improving public health.”