Facing big losses, two Lake County clinics to be closed

Sutter Lakeside Hospital announced recently it would close two clinics in Lake County.

The Upper Lake Community Health Clinic, which serves roughly 2,400 patients per year and was losing more than $200,000 a year,  and a chronic pain clinic will both be shuttered in the coming months.

The hospital intends to move the clinic’s services to its Family Medicine Center at the main campus outside of Lakeport by May 31, with expanded hours and more providers to additional patients.  The chronic pain clinic, which serves about 650 patients per year, is set to close by the end of June. That clinic was hemorrhaging about $1 million a year.  

Sutter Lakeside said it may make its mobile health unit available once a week at the sight of the Upper Lake clinic, located at Upper Lake High School, as a means of providing an alternative for residents.

Sutter Lakeside Chief Administration Officer Siri Nelson cited the overall Lake County economy as one of the pressures leading to the cuts. The unemployment rate in Lake County stood at 16.8 percent in March.***

The Northern California Center for Well Being, which focuses on employee wellness throughout Sonoma County, recently entered into a contract with Fairfield-based Partnership Health Plan, a non-profit managed Medi-Cal provider.

The nonprofit Center for Well Being in Santa Rosa will serve Partnership’s patients through its medical nutrition services for both group and individual members, which will provide one-on-one nutrition counseling with a registered dietician and group self-care classes for diabetes, adult weight management, childhood obesity and other areas, according to Alena Wall, the center executive director.

Partnership Health Plan administers benefits for some 200,000 total members across six counties, including Sonoma, Marin, Napa, Solano, Mendocino and Yolo counties. Last year, the health plan was designated by the state as the Community Provider Plan in Sonoma County, enabling it to offer some 7,000 enrollees in the program lower health care premiums.***

Dr. Bo Greaves of the Santa Rosa Community Health Centers was presented with the 2012 Family Physician of the Year award by the California Academy of Family Physicians, the health centers announced.  The academy, with more than 7,000 members, is the largest primary care medical society in California.

Dr. Greaves was commended for the following areas: providing patients with comprehensive and compassionate care; direct and effective involvement in community affairs that “enhance the quality of his community;” being a credible role model to his community and other health professionals, including professionals and residents and medical students; and effective representation for the specialty of family medicine.***

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