Nevada County residents share gratitude for local care | TheUnion.com
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Nevada County residents share gratitude for local care

We live in a unique community, strong in the arts, healthy food options, outdoor activity, and extraordinary community involvement. These are rare attributes for small rural communities, underscored by another rarity; access to local, community-based hospital care with emergency, inpatient and outpatient services.

On average 2,500 patients visit the emergency department at Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital (SNMH) each month, and roughly 200 surgical procedures take place in its operating rooms.

“We are very proud of the quality of care that we provide at the hospital. I’m humbled by the trust given to us by community members, and we take that trust very seriously,” said Katherine A. Medeiros, president/CEO of SNMH.



As we head into the season of thanksgiving, several local community members share their stories below about receiving care at the hospital.

Julie Baker




“About a year ago I asked my doctor to feel the lump I noticed behind my right ear. I hoped it was just swollen glands, but she said it was huge and needed to be checked out. Several biopsies, MRIs, CT scans and tests later, the two masses that were found were pronounced benign.

“Even so, it was determined that I should have the masses surgically removed. Surgery is not a decision to make lightly. Having now had two major surgeries, I cannot fathom why anyone would choose to do so.

“I made the decision to have my surgery here at our local hospital because I trusted my surgeon. When I first met ENT Jeanette Carpenter, MD, she said, “Look at my hands. They are so steady.” She never once wavered in her confidence to do her job well. So many times, as women especially, we don’t want to appear like we are bragging – but in this case you want a surgeon who brags!

“I completely trusted my surgical team. Upon arriving I was greeted by the pre-op nurse, who happens to be a volunteer at The Center for the Arts. I never once felt unattended to or in less than capable hands. Simply put, the hospital staff cared about my comfort and my health and I have to think some of it is because they also know me as a fellow community member.”

Howard Levine

“My wife Peggy and I have lived in Grass Valley for almost 41 years, at the Old Jones Hospital, Swan Levine House B&B. We moved during the ’74 fuel crisis and wanted to find a place that would be just one tank of gas away from a trip to San Francisco.

“I am an artist and currently teach at Sierra College. When I had a stroke on Sept. 9, 2009, I was teaching printmaking in my home studio and had no idea what was happening. I was reaching for a roller and for some reason it just kept getting a little further away. My student helped me back to the house and on the way another friend said, “Take him to the hospital NOW!”

“My son and wife drove me to the hospital. As soon as I arrived, I was identified as a stroke victim. That was the last I remember for a day or so. When I woke up everything was split in my vision, and I had little memory of what happened. It is really hard to say much about my care except it was immediate, I mean instantaneous.

“I think that most people have no idea by my work and appearance that I had a stroke. I give full credit to SNMH staff for the outcome of being able to still be as active as I am.

“Since that time, and since my recovery was so extraordinary, I have been involved with raising funds for the hospital through events with the Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital Foundation, like Moulin Rouge, A Night in Havana, The Raj and Martinis and a Movie.”

Richard Munroe

“I’ve had chronic knee pain for years as a result of an injury in my teens, but when I reinjured my knee in early 2014, the pain made it more difficult to do my job and limited some of my favorite activities. I went to see an orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Paul Sasaura, who told me that I needed a total knee replacement.

“Dr. Sasaura wanted to perform the surgery at Sierra Nevada Memorial, and I was grateful to be so close to home. I already had a lot of confidence in him because I had met three people who had total knee replacements from him and they told me how much they loved his work. That was the deciding factor for me.

“I had my surgery in September 2014, and decided to think of my hospital stay as a mini vacation; a way to see friends and rest. I was really well taken care of.

“My recovery was faster than expected. They had me up and standing within an hour of waking up, and the next day I was walking down a hallway with a walker. I had physical therapy in the hospital, and they came to visit me at home too. They were amazing, very helpful and knowledgeable.

“We are lucky to have a hospital of this quality that is so close and convenient.”

Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital is committed to responding to the needs of those it serves. If you have questions, concerns or a story to share, call 530-274-6860.

All physicians providing care for patients at SNMH are members of the medical staff and are independent practitioners, not employees of the hospital.


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