My name is Lynne Downs. My husband and I recently moved to Covington from Post Falls, Idaho. My husband obtained a job with Costco Wholesale headquarters in Issaquah and I am a recovery room nurse at MultiCare Health System’s Allenmore Hospital and Baker Day Surgery. It was my desire to work in the Tacoma area as we did not wish the commute to Seattle. As part of our decision making process for buying a new home, we decided to buy in the Maple Valley/Covington area, thinking this area is a halfway point to either of our work sites. We now live in Covington.
Recently, in April I became very ill and needed medical attention. I went to the Urgent Care Clinic in Covington. Although, I am employed by the MultiCare Health System I was impressed with the professional and kind staff that treated me that day. Unfortunately, I was notified that I would need to be admitted to the hospital as they felt I had a very serious pneumonia. They immediately placed me on oxygen and asked which hospital I would like to go to. In response, since I am an employee of the system, my immediate response was the closest hospital in the system. It turns out the only hospitals were in Tacoma over 20 miles away. Since my condition was serious, I had to be transported by ambulance.
Six days I spent in Allenmore Hospital healing from pneumonia and its complications. My husband working in Issaquah travelled over 40 miles through Seattle traffic congestion to visit me each day. We both felt it a shame there are no MultiCare Health System acute inpatient beds in Convington. Nor did we even consider this when we were buying our home.
Through my 24 years as a nurse I have worked in many hospitals throughout my career. At one point in my career, working in organ donation I worked with over 165 hospitals. I tell you this experience has given me the wisdom to select the hospitals I wish to be employed by or if need be a client of. The MultiCare Health System has by far outranked most hospitals I have had contact with in regard to the dignity and respect it treats their clients and employees.
The System does walk-the-walk as it practices its mission statement everyday. “Quality is achieving optimal outcomes for our patients through exceptional customer service and effective use of human, technological and financial resources.” I implore the Department of Health to let this system to continue to flourish, grow and provide this high-level of care to the citizens of Covington and its surrounding communities by allowing it to build a 58-bed hospital.
I am happy to report I am back to work and forever grateful for the tender, compassionate and skillful hands of the physicians, nurses, nurse’s aides, respiratory therapists and staff of MulitCare’s Allenmore Hospital.
Lynne M. Downs