In the past year, 10 physicians have joined the medical community in Ada and more physicians are on the way.
Of those 10 new physicians, nine joined Mercy Clinic practicing either in Mercy Hospital or the clinic setting and one joined Southern Oklahoma Urology and will perform procedures at the hospital.
This influx of providers represents Mercy’s proactive response to the looming physician shortages expected in the United States in the foreseeable future. Mercy Clinic will welcome a pulmonologist and a hospitalist in the coming month. Recruitment for orthopedics to the Ada area remains a priority.
The Association of American Medical Colleges has estimated that the United States will be short more than 91,000 doctors by 2020 — 45,000 in primary care and 46,000 in surgery and medical specialties.
“The 10 doctors who joined the Ada medical team over the past few months have brought great experience and expertise, and are a great complement to our existing medical staff,” said Di Smalley, regional president of Mercy West Communities and interim president of Mercy Hospital Ada. “Several of the new physicians have been vital in the development of a hospital medicine program and others will be crucial to the implementation of a new emergency medicine program in Ada this week.”
Oklahoma ranks among the highest in the nation for incidence of diabetes and cancer. For many rural patients, medical care for these and other medical conditions requires a trip to Oklahoma City.
But not in Ada, thanks to Mercy’s comprehensive network of care.
“Mercy remains committed to providing the very best in health care and we don’t want residents to travel far to get it,” said Smalley. “By maintaining excellence in our specialty service lines, like wound care and cancer, we are bringing quality health care closer to home for our patients.”
One of Mercy’s next goals is to bring telemedicine to Ada. Telemedicine uses high-tech, audio-visual equipment to connect physicians with patients in rural areas. This technology helps patients receive treatments faster – and more conveniently – than if they had to travel to the specialists diagnosing and treating them.
“Mercy continues to evaluate the needs of our patients, recruit quality physicians to the area and expand our services,” said Smalley. “Our commitment is to ensure the community has convenient access to the very best medical care possible.”