Health Care Providers Impact Statement for Walla Walla County
Number of docs in 2009: 161. That’s 27.3 physicians per 10,000 population1: the second highest rate in eastern 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:
---Providence St. Mary’s Medical Center in Walla Walla employs 40 MDs, three DOs, two physician assistants and four nurse practitioners.
---Walla Walla General Hospital says it has 37 MDs and one physician assistant on staff. It also draws upon 62 MDs, five DOs, one physician assistant and one nurse practitioner who practice offsite.
---A Yakima Valley Farm Workers’ clinic in Walla Walla employs six MDs, three physician assistants and two dentists.4
Number of current WWAMI Spokane and Pullman medical students from Walla Walla County: two
Number of current WSU pharmacy students from Walla Walla County: two
Number of current WSU nursing students from Walla Walla County: 37
Number of current WSU Spokane speech/hearing sciences students from Walla Walla County: two
UW School of Medicine clinical faculty in Walla Walla County: none5
Health professionals from Walla Walla County who graduated from Washington colleges:
---Providence St. Mary’s Medical Center employs six UW School of Medicine graduates, as well as eight doctors who served their residencies in Washington and one former medical fellow. The hospital also has one physician assistant who graduated from UW and one nurse practitioner who got her degree from the WSU College of Nursing.
---Walla Walla General Hospital has three UW medical grads, 10 former Washington residents and one doctor who served a fellowship in Washington.6
Walla Walla serves as a site for third and fourth-year medical clerkships in obstetrics/gynecology. It’s also a place for first-year students looking to practice their skills in a rural setting during the summer between their first and second years (Rural/Underserved Opportunities Program). It is not currently a residency site.7
About 600 medical professionals in 26 eastern and central Washington communities serve as preceptors (instructors) for UW/WSU medical students. About a third of those work in small cities and towns. In addition, Walla Walla County hosts some of the 48 preceptors who work with WSU pharmacy students throughout the Columbia Basin region.
The WSU College of Nursing has one faculty member in Walla Walla and offers classes for students working on bachelor’s degrees, all the way up to the doctorate level.
Walla Walla County unemployment rate (Nov. 2012): 6.2% (state average 7.8% seasonally adjusted, 7.3% not seasonally adjusted)8
Health care/social assistance employment in Walla Walla County 9: 3,817 (out of 27,800 jobs). It’s the county’s third-largest employer, providing about $37 million in payroll, about 14.9% of the county’s total payroll.
Tripp Umbach estimate of annual impact of Spokane academic health sciences on Walla Walla County (2009): 12 jobs, $2.2 million in economic impact, $176,000 in local taxes
Tripp Umbach projection of annual impact of Spokane academic health sciences on Walla Walla County (2030): 97 jobs, $16.8 million, $1.17 million in local taxes
1UW Center for Health Workforce Studies
2UW Center for Health Workforce Studies
3Association of American Medical Colleges
4Numbers gleaned from hospital and clinic website
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: 4, 5
Legislative District: 16
County Seat: Walla Walla
WSU College of Nursing Assistant Professor Anne Mason on providing mental health care for inmates at the state penitentiary:
"The inmates we worked with get good care. And I think we helped to improve the safety of society."
Read more about her work.