Health Care Provider Impact Statement for Cowlitz County
Number of docs in 2009: 178. That’s 17.5 physicians per 10,000 population,1 the ninth-highest rate in western Washington. Washington’s rate is 21.2 physicians per 10,000; the national average is about 20.2 per 10,000.2 Washington imports about 85% of its physicians from other states or nations.3
Health professional breakout: Peace Health employs 76 MDs, six DOs, 17 physician assistants and 13 nurse practitioners at St. John Medical Center in Longview, seven clinics in Longview and one clinic in Castle Rock.4
Number of current WWAMI Spokane and Pullman medical students from Cowlitz County: one
Number of current WSU pharmacy students from Cowlitz County: zero
Number of current WSU nursing students from Cowlitz County: 23
UW School of Medicine clinical faculty in Cowlitz County: none5
Health professionals in Cowlitz County who graduated from Washington colleges: Peace Health employs at least four UW medical school graduates. Five of its physicians did residencies in Washington. One physician assistant is a graduate of the UW MEDEX program.6
The county doesn’t currently have any medical education sites.7
Cowlitz County unemployment rate (Nov. 2012): 9.9% (state average 7.8% seasonally adjusted, 7.3% not seasonally adjusted)8
Health care/social assistance employment in Cowlitz County9: 5,020 (out of 35,500 jobs). It’s the county’s third-largest employer, providing about $51 million in payroll, about 14.2% of the county’s total payroll.
1According to the UW Center for Health Workforce Studies
2UW Center for Health Workforce Studies
3Association of American Medical Colleges
4Numbers gleaned from hospital and clinic websites
5UW Clinical faculty listing: http://depts.washington.edu/fammed/clinical_faculty/listings
6Numbers calculated from hospital and clinic websites
8Washington Department of Employment Security
9Washington Department of Employment Security (third quarter, 2010)
Congressional District: 3
County Seat: Kelso
WSU pharmacy students (here with their faculty advisors) called diabetes patients in Cowlitz and Grant Counties once a week to test whether regular contact provides health benefits.
"This could reduce costly and painful diabetic complications in rural areas where the rates of diabetes are unusually high."
Read more about it.
(Photo by Lorraine Nelson)