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Marin Community Clinics will purchase its existing building in the Canal neighborhood of San Rafael from Marin County for $1 million.

The building, at 3110 Kerner Blvd., is one of five clinics operated by the federally qualified health center and has been operated as a clinic since 2007, when it replaced trailers in the parking lot of Marin General Hospital that had long reached capacity, according to Interim Executive Director Linda Tavasvis.

The county had purchased the approximately 10,000-square-foot building for $3 million, and gave the clinics a $2 million purchase option along with its lease. The site was previously rented to the non-profit clinics for $355,000 annually.

The clinics successfully raised the additional $1 million, according to Ms. Tavasvis.

“We never figured we’d have the money to purchase it,” Mr. Tavasvis said. But a successful capital campaign made the purchase possible, and it should provide long-term savings of about $3 million in saved interest, Ms. Tavasvis said.

“It’s a huge savings over the course of the lease,” she said. “We’re very lucky and very grateful.”

Echoing a national trend, Marin Community Clinics, part of the  Redwood Community Health Coalition, has experienced rapid growth — in the last three years, the five clinics went from seeing some 14,000 patients a year to just shy of 95,000, Ms. Tavasvis said.

Marin Community Clinics provides a range services, mostly primary care, to the uninsured and underinsured throughout Marin. It has two clinics in San Rafael, two in Novato and one in Greenbrae.

In related news, Marin Community Clinics former Executive Director John Shen was appointed chief of the Long Term Care Division at the Department of Health Care Services by Gov. Jerry Brown.

Mr. Shen retired from the clinics in April after having overseen operations since 2007. Previously, he worked as a consultant from 2003 to 2007, working with Marin County Health and Human Services, Southwest Community Health Center in Santa Rosa (part of the Santa Rosa Community Health Centers) and the Contra Costa County Health Plan.

Mr. Shen's successor, Ms. Tavasvis, stepped in as interim executive director in April. Most recently, Ms. Tavasvis was senior vice president and executive director of physician services at Marin General Hospital. A search is ongoing for a permanent ED, which Ms. Tavasvis said she would happily fill if asked to do so by the board of directors.

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The Bay Area Inpatient Group, a physician’s group associated with NorthBay Healthcare, has been acquired by Sound Physicians, a Tacoma, Wash.-based practice with more than 500 physicians across the country.

The Bay Area Inpatient Group will continue to serve NorthBay Healthcare’s two Solano County hospitals, NorthBay Medical Center in Fairfield and VacaValley Hospital in Vacaville. The combined organization will be able to double its patient visits at the two hospitals, according to an announcement by Sound Physicians CEO Robert Bessler.

The doctors serving NorthBay’s two hospitals will be able to utilize Sound Physician’s performance management engine and will benefit from the group’s experience in hospital management, in areas such as informatics, billing, compliance and HR, the Washington group said.

With the acquisition, four Bay Area Inpatient Group hospitalists — a term used for physicians who practice inpatient care — are now added to Sound Physicians’ existing team of 12 hospitalists and one hospitalist RN.

Sound Physicians says it provides inpatient services to more than 50 hospitals and post-acute care centers around the U.S.

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The North Bay Psychiatric Associates relocated its Santa Rosa practice from 3410 Mendocino Ave. to an approximately 2,800-square-foot office at 1335 North Dutton. The new office opened on Aug. 8. The group, which also has a San Rafael location, was represented by PCS-7 Real Estate; the landlord was represented by Keegan & Coppin.

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Petaluma-based Oculus Innovative Sciences announced a multi-year licensing agreement with Michigan-based Eloquest Healthcare, a subsidiary of Ferndale Pharma Group, to market multiple Microcyn based products in the United States under the Eloquest Healthcare brand. The agreement includes Oculus’ negative-pressure wound therapy solution and prescription wound care line.

According to the agreement, Eloquest Healthcare has been granted an exclusive U.S. license for Microcyn-based negative-pressure wound therapy solution, and will promote Microcyn-based wound care products under Eloquest Healthcare Brand to U.S. hospitals, ambulatory surgical and acute care centers.  Eloquest Healthcare plans to begin marketing both product lines beginning in January 2012.

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Health Care People

[caption id="attachment_38882" align="alignleft" width="158" caption="Brad Restel"][/caption]

Bradley Restel, a diagnostic radiologist, has joined Redwood Regional Medical Group at its Santa Rosa imaging center at 121 Sotoyome St.

Dr. Restel obtained his medical degree from the University of Texas and completed an internship at UC San Diego. He completed his residency in diagnostic radiology at Duke University, where he also completed a fellowship in musculoskeletal radiology.

Dr. Restel has an undergraduate degree in biochemistry and cell biology from UC San Diego. He worked as a research technician at The Burnham Institute Cancer Research Center in La Jolla. From there, he became a senior research assistant at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center at the University of Texas at Houston.

During his research years he designed a novel gene delivery system that was eventually published in Cell, a premier journal for basic science.

Palm Drive Hospital in Sebastopol  has hired Paula Shatkin to develop and direct a case management program to ensure systematic follow-up for patients with chronic illnesses and other long-term needs. Most recently, she worked for the Jewish Family and Children’s Services in San Francisco, The Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma counties, where she provided consultation and care management for Sonoma County seniors. She obtained her undergraduate degree from UC Berkeley and a master’s in social work from the University of Southern California.

Delroy McFarlane, a specialist in internal medicine, recently joined Queen of the Valley Medical Associates, a locally owned physician group. He was the eighth physician to join the group that contracts with Queen of the Valley Medical Center in Napa since its formation in May 2010.

Dr. McFarlane is board certified and focuses on adult primary care. He maintained a private practice in Gardenville, Nev., before moving his practice to Napa.

From 1988 to 2000, he was a staff member at Beaver Medical Group, department of internal medicine, in Redlands. He was also chairman of internal medicine and a member or the executive committee at Redlands Community Hospital.

[caption id="attachment_38885" align="alignright" width="176" caption="Mitesh Patel"][/caption]

NorthBay Healthcare has brought on Mitesh Patel as vice president of medical affairs. It also added three new physicians.

Dr. Patel has a background in emergency medicine and completed his undergraduate degree at UC Berkeley. The Sacramento native earned his medical degree from the University of Health Sciences at Chicago Medical School. He completed an emergency medicine residency at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio.

He began practicing emergency medicine in 1995 in Bakersfield until he chose to return to academics to obtain a master’s degree in business administration. He was appointed vice president and chief medical officer at Mercy Hospitals of Bakersfield in 2004. In 2008 he became chief operating officer for the Truxtun campus, a position he held until his departure from Mercy in February 2011.

[caption id="attachment_38887" align="alignleft" width="158" caption="Maqbool Ahmed"][/caption]

Maqbool Ahmed, a specialist in pulmonary-critical care medicine, has joined Delphi Health-care Partners. Dr. Ahmed earned his medical degree from Dow Medical College — University of Karachi, in Karachi, Pakistan. He completed an internship and residency in internal medicine at Wayne State University—School of Medicine, Detroit Medical Center in Michigan. He completed a pulmonary and critical care medicine fellowship at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center in Ohio.

[caption id="attachment_38889" align="alignright" width="154" caption="Edward Wang"][/caption]

Edward Wang is a urologist with the NorthBay Specialty Practices in Fairfield. Dr. Wang earned his medical degree from the Chicago Medical School. He completed a general surgery internship and surgery and urology residencies at the University of Illinois. He is board-certified in urology and has been in private practice in Fairfield and Vacaville for more than 25 years.

[caption id="attachment_38895" align="alignleft" width="176" caption="Jim Wu"][/caption]

Jim Wu has joined the NorthBay Center for Primary Care at VacaValley in Vacaville. Dr. Wu earned his medical degree at Beijing Medical University in China.  He completed an internship and residency in internal medicine at Brown University School Program at Memorial Hospital of Rhode Island, and was a research fellow in endocrinology at Harvard Medical School’s Joslin Diabetes Center. He is board-certified in internal medicine. In addition to English, Dr. Wu is fluent in Mandarin Chinese.

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Submit items for this column to Dan Verel at dverel@busjrnl.com, 707-521-4257 or fax 707-521-5292.