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Approximately 50 Ada residents brainstormed last week with Sisters of Mercy leaders in a community roundtable about what the future of health care should look like. Sisters of Mercy is the management group for Valley View Regional Hospital.

More than 50 Ada leaders brainstormed this week with Mercy leaders in a community roundtable about what the future of health care should look like. Ada is one of 24 communities in Oklahoma, Kansas, Arkansas and Missouri in which Mercy is hosting roundtables over the next month.

“We want to hear what our communities have to say about health care,” said Lynn Britton, Mercy president and CEO. “Without their voices, we can’t possibly create a better health care system in this country. Mercy wants to help uncover the barriers and find solutions for a healthier future.”

Dr. Leandrita Ortega, a family medicine physician at Valley View Regional Hospital – a facility managed by Mercy, was pleased with the positive tone from the community. “It is reassuring to learn that Mercy’ mission is faith based,” said Dr. Ortega. “The atmosphere was very positive, and I felt the community was honest about the direction they would like to see Valley View head in the next five years. “

Other local leaders chimed in as well. “The roundtable certainly met my expectations,” said Susan Scroggins, Oklahoma Blood Institute director. “I was pleasantly surprised to learn about the new services Valley View recently launched, including the diagnostic heart cath lab and radiation therapy. I am glad Mercy came to Ada and listened to our concerns.”

Jeff Warmuth, Ada Chamber of Commerce president, appreciated the opportunity to learn about Mercy. “The representatives from Mercy and Valley View were open to new ideas from the community,” said Warmuth. “I was very impressed with the presentation.”

The roundtables are the first step in creating a dialogue with community members about local health care needs. Mercy will use the feedback from each of the 24 communities as part of a year-long community planning process which will conclude in January 2011. With this input, Mercy will develop a roadmap for Mercy’s future work in each community. Plans will be shared with all participating community members.

“Just like the Sisters of Mercy who brought health care to each of the communities served by Mercy, we are not content to stand still,” said Bob Thompson, president and CEO of Valley View Regional Hospital, a hospital managed by Mercy. “We want to look at the needs of our communities and together take actions in a way that has never been done before.”

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