Randall Children’s Hospital and COPA partner to deliver specialty care to kids close to home

The Bend Bulletin, KTVZ and Cascade Business News

June 2014

With nearly 40,000 children in Central Oregon there is a significant need for specialized pediatric care in our community. Central Oregon Pediatric Associates (COPA) has recently partnered with Randall Children’s Hospital at Legacy Emanuel to expand the number of experienced pediatric specialists coming from Portland to Bend on a regular basis.

“We’re delighted to increase the number of pediatric specialists coming regularly to Bend. It’s so important for children with challenging medical needs to have easier access to experienced specialists right here at home.”, says Dr. Caroline Gutmann”, pediatrician and medical director for COPA.

Nine pediatric specialists from Randall Children’s Hospital are now providing expert specialty care to children of all ages at COPA’s East Bend location on a regular schedule beginning May 2014. This is a significant increase in specialists traveling from children’s hospitals in Portland, bringing the total to fifteen who regularly see children in Bend.

“Randall Children’s Hospital is looking forward to enhancing and expanding children’s access to specialized care. Keeping children at home and in their communities is important so families do not have to travel to Portland for quality specialty care,” says Sharon Su, M.D., FAAP, medical director of pediatric nephrology at Randall Children’s Hospital.

Although COPA provides the waiting room and exam room space for the visits, Randall Children’s specialists will bring most of their own equipment, such as microscopes, and nursing staff, Dr. Su said.

Randall Children’s doctors will also bring their own computers, which are connected to the hospital’s electronic medical records system.

“One of the best things about electronic medical records for health care is that you can do a lot more of these remote outreaches and still be within our hospital system,” Dr. Su said.

Randall Children’s also sends doctors to cities like Corvallis, but Su said the partnership with COPA is its largest to date.

Dr. Su said she thinks having the specialists in Bend will improve things like medication adherence for patients, and will make them more likely to actually get the care they need.

“It may make sure you come to your appointments because it’s not taking a whole day off just to drive up to see a doctor,” she said. “The idea is that the medical care we provide is better, too, because it’s more accessible.”

Pediatric specialists from Randall Children’s Hospital scheduling visits to COPA include:

• Cardiology (heart)
• Endocrinology (hormone disorders)
• Eating disorders
• Gastroenterology (digestive system disorders)
• General surgery
• Nephrology (kidney disorders)
• Pulmonology (lung disorders)
• Rheumatology (joint, soft tissue and auto immune disorders)
• Urology

Other specialties available at COPA include developmental pediatrics and neurology. Local pediatricians in Central Oregon may refer patients to specialists based on patients’ medical needs. To schedule an appointment with any of these pediatric specialists, parents and guardians should contact the physicians’ offices in Portland. COPA is not scheduling patients for these providers. Contact information for these specialists is available on the COPA website at www.copakids.com/specialists/

Read the Bend Bulletin story.

For more information contact Maegan Vidal: mturnell@lhs.org.