The Edwards Agency

Opinion

Writer appreciates hospital

Snoqualmie Valley Hospital Several weeks ago, my family had yet another eye-opening experience with regard to the quality of services at Snoqualmie Valley Hospital.
   It was mid-afternoon, and my son began feeling numbness in the left side of his body and was struggling to see out of his left eye. The symptoms were so great that he drove directly to a doctor's office. The physician there told him that nothing was wrong.
   Later that evening, I told my friends about the situation at a meeting I attended. They were so shocked at the lack of treatment that they followed me home and informed my son that they were taking him to the emergency room. They didn't give him a choice of whether or not he was going; they did however, allow him to select the hospital. Fortunately, he chose our local facility, Snoqualmie Valley Hospital.
   Upon entering the emergency room, he was promptly tended to by the head of the emergency department, Dr. Dean Steele. Dr. Steele quickly came to the conclusion that my son was suffering from an acute migraine headache--a headache so severe that it was threatening to cause a stroke.
   Dr. Steele prescribed migraine medication and provided follow-up instructions. My son is now out of pain for the first time in 3 years.
   This wasn't our first encounter with the Hospital--or with Dr. Steele. During a trip to the Snoqualmie Valley Hospital emergency room, when my mother was in the later stages of Alzheimer's disease, the good doctor informed me about the wide variety of services available for seniors in our community. No one had ever told me that help was available; Dr. Steele went so far as to call around and hook us up with the senior centers and state programs that provided care during the day for not only my mother, but for myself as her caregiver.
   Migraine headache, Alzheimer's, diverticulitis, hysterectomy, knee surgery ... We've visited Snoqualmie Valley Hospital for almost anything you can think of. We've seen emergency room physicians, anesthesiologists, radiologists, surgeons, and nurses. All have exceeded our expectations and made us feel comfortable and respected.
   The issue is this: will we have quality health care locally or will we spend our dollars on the big hospitals in Bellevue and Seattle and starve out the excellent resources we have right here?
   I don't like hospitals, but if I have to go somewhere, please take me to Snoqualmie Valley Hospital!

Cheri Thomas, North Bend