So Many Reasons To Select NorthBay

Today’s consumer makes a lot of decisions about their health care, from vitamins and supplements to choosing an obstetrician to deliver their baby or a surgeon to save their life. So how far is too far to drive for a doctor’s appointment? How much should you pay for a visit? For prescriptions? What if you…
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NorthBay is Here for You

When our communities in northern Solano County desperately needed a hospital in the 1950s, civic leaders took action. Volunteers hit the street, going door to door to collect donations, holding penny drives, luncheons and fancy galas. They were here for us when we needed their leadership and vision to create Intercommunity Memorial Hospital, which opened…
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Let’s Thank Them for Their Service

Whether you’re walking the hallways at NorthBay Medical Center, NorthBay VacaValley Hospital, or visiting a physician at one of our primary care facilities, it’s not hard to find a veteran. There are scores of them working at every one of NorthBay Healthcare’s six campuses in Fairfield and Vacaville. Of our 2,600 employees, more than 200…
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You Have Questions? NorthBay Has Answers

Each year tens of thousands of Solano County residents have the opportunity to determine their health care future. It’s called “open enrollment” and it is here. For NorthBay Healthcare it is a time when we renew our efforts to inform you about your choices and why our community-based, independent provider of advanced medicine may be…
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Be Prepared

Before communities are besieged by fires, floods, earthquakes and hurricanes, the key to survival—and success—is to be prepared. In this edition of Wellspring, we provide suggestions to help you create a plan to ensure the health of your family and the safety of your home. We hope you find the information valuable. Being equipped to…
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Choose Well, Choose NorthBay

If it’s fall, it must be Open Enrollment season. That’s the magical time of year—usually between August and December—when people can opt to change their health insurance and other benefit programs. Selecting your insurance plan determines who you can pick for your physician, so it’s a pretty important choice. After all, your doctor just may…
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It’s Decision Time

For tens of thousands of Solano County residents, an important decision is at hand. Sadly, most people will spend more time considering a new car purchase than researching which doctor and health system to trust with their well-being and the lives of their loved ones. There is one connection that is often overlooked: When you…
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Our Key to Achieving Advanced Medicine

I am humbled and excited to settle into this space in Wellspring, providing a CEO’s view of NorthBay Healthcare—today and into the future. I have just completed my first 100 days at the helm of this nonprofit, independent community institution and it feels natural. I have my predecessor, Gary Passama, to thank for that because…
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High-tech Tools in NorthBay’s Pocket

Do the words “community hospital” conjure the image of a place where complex brain and spinal surgery happen on a regular basis? Or where life-saving orthopedic care is available 24/7/365? Where cutting-edge equipment and medical know-how allow cancer patients get their treatments close to home? Or where the parents of fragile newborns can keep an…
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The Road Ahead

When I became CEO of NorthBay Healthcare I had just turned 33, and everyone was older than me. Time ticked by, and with it an unsettling feeling has started to grow. You see, 35 years later, most everyone is younger. Although that was not the pivotal reason, I realized it was time for me to…
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End of an Era

Longtime CEO Reflects on 35 Years in Health Care NorthBay Healthcare President/CEO Gary Passama It was 1981 and a gallon of gas cost $1.25, Ronald Reagan was president and Intercommunity Hospital in Fairfield was happy just to offer basic medical care. It was a small, one-hospital system, opened in 1960, but unequipped medically to handle…
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Welcome a New CEO

Watch anything from the same vantage point for 35 years and you will recognize how some things change and some things stay the same. So it has been from my perch, working side by side with some very passionate and compassionate people who believe the community’s health is life’s purpose. The technology and infrastructure of…
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A Fine Collaboration

Long admiring the Mayo Clinic from afar, it struck me at times how much we share a vision of why we exist and how we do what we do. When I visited the Rochester, Minn., headquarters of the worldwide leader in health care and research in April, I saw the words of Dr. William Mayo…
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What’s the Difference?

Just About Everything at NorthBay HealthSpring Fitness General Manager Greg Nagaye and Fitness Director Mike Cole. You think you’re headed to the gym, but the moment you step into NorthBay HealthSpring Fitness, you’re in for a pleasant surprise. That’s the promise of General Manager Greg Nagaye who opened the doors this July to Solano County’s…
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Be Your Best You

For many years, NorthBay Healthcare has been integrating “wellness” into everyday medicine. It’s been a years-long process of changing the mindset of our patients, and in some cases, our care providers. It’s not enough to “get well” after a visit to the Emergency Department or the intensive care unit or the family physician. The medical…
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Evolving and Advancing Medicine for Solano County

Nearly 34 years ago, a noted author thought he was way ahead of his time and published a much-discussed tome, “Can Hospitals Survive.” That was about the time the Board of Directors gave me the opportunity to lead a community-based organization that has evolved into NorthBay Healthcare. The writer outlined all the changes occurring in…
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Work of Heart

The morning the call came is a morning that will be remembered for a very long time—maybe forever. A conference room in Fairfield and one in Vacaville were filled. We had gathered to eavesdrop. Kathy Richerson, Chief Nursing Officer, was on one end of the call. On the other was the leader of a respected…
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Here’s to a Healthier, Happier 2015

If you are like me, those resolutions you made for a new year are just starting to fade away. Some of them already may have collapsed. Or maybe all you need is some encouragement and motivation. This issue of Wellspring aims to do just that. Of all of the vows made at the start of…
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It Only Takes Hope And a Lot of Hard Work

Any physician—whether it’s your family doctor, your oncologist or your neurosurgeon—will tell you that the mind can make a difference when it comes to overcoming a medical challenge. “You gotta have hope.” That’s what they sang in the Broadway hit, “Damn Yankees,” and it pretty much applies to modern medicine as well. As much as…
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Adult Day Center Provides Hope to Vallejo Family

Clockwise from bottom, Lydia Simmons, Michael Hall, Sandy Perez, manager of the NorthBay Adult Day Center, and Russell Simmons. Sometimes she’s lucid, and they talk for hours. Other times she’s difficult and doesn’t remember who they are. Lydia Simmons, 82, has Lewi Body Dementia, which is characterized by foreign proteins in her brain that disrupt…
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Warm & Fuzzy, Green & Growing

From the cover of this edition of Wellspring you can see our health magazine staff decided to focus on a different kind of practitioner who helps with healing — some with four legs and some with feathers. Particularly interesting is our own “pet rescue” hero, our trauma neurosurgeon, Dr. Jeffrey Dembner, who on his way…
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Different is Good… Very Good

More than a half century ago, a small group of hometown doctors who believed health care close to home should be something different, combined their genius to create NorthBay Healthcare. To this day, we seek to be different for two reasons: to survive in a landscape over-colonized by big-box corporate systems, and to provide care…
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Destination: Trauma Level II

Far from a sprint, and more akin to a strenuous but gratifying marathon, the years-long development of the NorthBay Trauma Center is approaching another milestone. It was in 2002 that I stood before a local Rotary Club and told the lunchtime audience that our team at NorthBay Healthcare would not be satisfied until we developed…
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Focusing on Children

This year, the emergency departments of our two hospitals expect about 10,000 visits from pediatric patients, those vulnerable young people who come with a fever, an aching tummy, a broken arm, and unfortunately, some things worse. While NorthBay Healthcare has been busy developing new advanced medical services for women, heart attack patients and those with…
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New Year, New Triumphs

A new year brings new hope we will accomplish more in the next 12 months than in the year prior. When we do, it will represent quite an achievement, because our progress last year was nothing short of valiant. In 2012, we pursued with vigor our mission of bringing new and needed advanced medicine to…
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Reform is Not Pain-free

How about a pain-free life in a society where health care is accessible to all without much government interference? Of course, that is an inconceivable plot, even for an old-fashioned Disney movie. Pain is not only a part of life, it is part and parcel of healthcare reform. With it, come difficult decisions, amid perpetual,…
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Straight from the Heart

The new year’s first edition of Wellspring comes from the heart. Inside you will find some inspiring—and heartwarming—stories of Solano residents who, with a little help from our healthcare professionals, have overcome obstacles and learned to live well, regardless of their age. February is Heart Month, and it gives us an opportunity to showcase our…
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The Time is Now

The undeniable need for advanced trauma emergency services in Solano County hit home here at NorthBay recently when a typical staff meeting turned unusual. To build Solano County’s first trauma center the program’s architects must keep track of hundreds of many moving parts—policies, procedures, protocols, staff training, physicians, nurses, new staff recruitment, equipment needs, regulatory…
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Staying Grounded, Staying on Course

Amid the clamor emanating from political circles (or is it political circus?) these days, it’s easy for healthcare leaders to become perplexed by Washington, D.C., and Sacramento. We can easily become preoccupied with state budget cuts, federal deficit reductions and the haggling over the national debt. We can fret over what politicians will decide, and…
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Offering a Reason to Believe

Sometimes, hope can be the best medicine we can prescribe. So we do just that. One day, my brother called to say his 78-year-old friend had been diagnosed with a form of leukemia and was told he had two months to live. This man had a well-known health plan and a physician who said because…
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Doing What Others Can’t

What do we mean when we say, “Advanced medicine, close to home”? Well, how about a robot zipping down our hospital hallway en route to check on a stroke patient? Right out of Star Wars. Or what about creating 3-D and 4-D (moving images) of the heart taken by a camera-like probe that travels down…
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Into the Blogosphere

Even those of us who own it, live it and breathe it every day do not always comprehend the vast complexity of healthcare. So why expect our patients and the general public to understand what we do and why we do it the way we do it? Yes, there’s the clinical side, which takes a…
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Our Commitment, Cross Our Hearts

The advent of Solano County’s first center for heart surgery and specialized vascular treatments simply underlines NorthBay Healthcare’s mission and promise to bring advanced medicine close to home. In this issue of Wellspring, we present a comprehensive look at the skilled professionals who work in state-of-the-art facilities to deliver life-saving heart and vascular medicine. Our…
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These Are Curious Times

The campaign for “reform”—however you define change in health care—grinds along in state and federal capitals. All the while, we here on the front lines do what we have always done: focus on our patients and the best possible care we can provide them. Politicians and special interests this summer launched aggressive TV ads and…
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From the Desk of the CEO

Any notion health care and hospitals somehow are “recession proof” – immune from today’s economic malaise – has been proved a myth once again. We find ourselves shoulder to shoulder with every business, every family, that struggles to endure these extraordinary times. After three very good years of fiscal health, NorthBay Healthcare finds itself in…
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