Kaiser Permanente is this year’s winner for Best Health Care in the North Bay. “Kaiser Permanente’s focus on quality, prevention, and the social determinants of health is keeping people healthier; often preventing illnesses and disease from occurring in the first place,” says Judy Coffey, senior vice president and area manager in Marin and Sonoma, of its success. “This is saving and improving lives. That’s total health.”
Kaiser Permanente stands out, says Coffey, thanks to the strength of its high-quality and comprehensive health care. “We integrate prevention, wellness, chronic conditions management and specialty care. And we do it all in one convenient location—you can see your doctor, have a consult with a specialist, get an X-ray, and pick up a prescription in a single visit,” she says. “Our HealthConnect electronic medical record system along with mobile apps and video visit capability helps keep our members connected with their health care in ways that work for them.”
Kaiser Permanente began in the 1930s, when Henry Kaiser and Dr. Sidney Garfield partnered to care for construction workers in the first pre-pay health plan. The plan opened to the public in 1945. Kaiser Permanente came to the North Bay, first in San Rafael in 1958 and then in Santa Rosa in 1980. Today, Kaiser Permanente also built hospitals and medical office buildings along the way, to serve more than 300,000 members in Marin and Sonoma counties.
Both the Santa Rosa and San Rafael medical centers provide a broad range of hospital and outpatient medical services and specialties, says Coffey. In addition, there are medical offices in Mill Valley, downtown San Rafael, west Marin, Novato, Petaluma, Rohnert Park, and north Santa Rosa.
Ever on the lookout for ways to improve, Coffey reveals that Kaiser Permanente has begun construction on a new 87,300-square-foot medical office building in Southwest Santa Rosa. “This will be a LEED Platinum, net-zero energy usage; all-electric building, with photovoltaic canopies in the parking lot and drought-tolerant landscaping,” says Coffey. “And we’re expanding our behavioral health services into Southwest Santa Rosa. In Marin County, we have purchased a building on Los Gamos and we’re in the process of upgrading it to a medical office building.”
What does Coffey love about her work? “Everyone here believes that our patients and members come first, and that creates teamwork that really accomplishes a lot. That’s exciting and rewarding for all of us at Kaiser Permanente. That’s one reason KP Marin-Sonoma is an 11-time winner of the Best Places to Work award.”
There are a few accomplishments that Coffey is particularly proud to note about her work for Kaiser Permanente. “We helped deliver 2,000 babies in the last year. We’re a center for medical education for nurses, physicians, and pharmacists, we’ve have brought young people in to learn about health care opportunities through the Summer Health Careers Institute, and have hundreds of volunteers throughout our medical center who feel compelled to give to others.”
Kaiser Permanente’s commitment to heath care, says Coffey, “lets us have healthier members and patients. We’re here to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve, so thank you for voting for us.”
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