It’s no secret that recruiting physicians and other clinical talent to rural hospitals is no easy task. Rural hospitals have a difficult time competing for the shrinking base of physician/provider talent with larger metropolitan areas. The healthcare industry is currently facing significant shortages of clinical personnel, including doctors, physician assistants and nurse practitioners.
Bradford Regional Medical Center (BRMC) is no exception. However, BRMC and Olean General Hospital, both members of Upper Allegheny Health System (UAHS), have taken an aggressive approach to provider recruitment.
For BRMC, recruitment results have been impressive over the last year and impressive still heading into the remainder of 2019 and into 2020. Six new providers have arrived since last September, and another six are on the way this fall and into next spring.
“Without a talented provider base, hospitals can’t survive,” said Timothy J. Finan, president and CEO of Upper Allegheny Health System, Bradford Regional Medical Center and Olean General Hospital. “Nothing happens in medicine without a physician order,” he said.
UAHS created a long-term, focused effort to recruit physician/provider talent to the region. “We put together a very good recruitment team to find the right providers to come to Bradford and provide care to our patients,” Finan said. “Bradford is a wonderful community, a great place to raise a family and build a career. We know that not everyone is looking for a big city experience, and we use the rural lifestyle as an attractor for potential candidates.”
In the past year, the hospital has recruited six new providers to its Foothills Medical Group and Bradford Regional Medical Services, practice groups owned by BRMC. Those providers are: Jakub Wojcik, MD, primary care; Stephanie Martuccio, Nurse Practitioner primary care; Filane Crumrine, Doctorate-Nurse Practitioner, primary care; Courtney Snow, Physician Assistant, primary care; and Asim Makhdom, MD, orthopedics.
“We’re more than pleased we were able to bring these talented providers to our hospital and the Bradford community,” Finan said.
“That said, we are excited that in the coming months we will be welcoming six more physicians to BRMC and the Bradford community,” he said.
The hospital expects to have Jamie Wooldridge, MD, pediatric pulmonologist from Oishei Children’s Hospital, begin to see patients in Bradford in 2020. Rachel Raphael, MD, general surgeon with special expertise in breast and endocrine surgery, will expand her Olean practice to include an office in Bradford in 2020 and will perform surgeries at BRMC.
Family medicine physicians coming to Bradford include: Nerissa Baptiste, MD, and Cory Mathias, DO, who will join the Foothills Medical Group later this fall. Paul Tinsley, MD, otolaryngologist, has recently been recruited, will have an office in Bradford and perform head and neck surgery at BRMC beginning next spring.
In addition, Theresa McClain, DO, OB/GYN, will join Universal Primary Care in October and see patients at 159 Interstate Parkway and perform testing and gynecological surgery at BRMC.
“We know that success in provider recruitment is important both to the Bradford community’s access to critical healthcare and to the wellbeing of Bradford Regional Medical Center. We are very pleased that we are able to bring these talented clinicians to our hospital and to the community,” Finan said.