Petaluma a healthy role model

The Petaluma Health Care District has drawn the attention and praise of a top California health official for its community programs.

“This is a model for other communities,” said California Department of Health Care Services Chief Medical Officer Dr. Neal Kohatsu, who was impressed with what he saw during a daylong site visit to Petaluma. “They’ve done good work developing their health care system, with quality strategies fostering a healthy community. Great work all around.”

DHCS was particularly impressed with that community’s health model, which includes services and funding administered outside of Petaluma Valley Hospital. They requested to visit Petaluma because they wanted to see the hands-on efforts that health care districts can play in communities, beyond acute care and hospitals.

Dr. Kohatsu said his team will take what they learned from the day and work with other counties state-wide on issues of education and social services, making sure people can find healthcare services available to them.

The visit took DHCS attendees to McDowell Elementary School, Petaluma Community Center, Petaluma Health Center, meeting with childcare specialists, the Petaluma Police Department, PHCD’s CEO Ramona Faith, community outreach representatives and the Heartsafe Community program.


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