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2013 Election - Hospital District 4, Position No. 1

Name: Dick Larson

Age: 65

Family: Daughter, 26

Occupation: Owner of the Oroville Pharmacy

Career/ educational background: Hospital commissioner for the past 28 years.

I have a degree in psychology from Eastern Washington University and a B.S. in pharmacy from North Dakota State.

I was born in Tonasket and except for the time I was in college, I am a lifelong resident of Oroville.

• What does the hospital need to do to address changes in medical coverage under the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare)?

We’re working on that. There are three things that we are in Okanogan County – old and broke and sick – and that’s not a very good combination.

I hope this benefits some. I think there’s some significant challenges.

In theory, I don’t see how Obamacare can hurt the hospital, unless people can’t get in to see a doctor and get sicker and sicker.

Right now it’s just so mucked up it’s hard to get people signed up.

We may have an access problem as a result of Obamacare, I think.

• With almost $2 million in warrants owed, how would stabilize the hospital’s financial situation?

We’re at $277,000 now for our warrants.

We closed the assisted living facility, which was an unpopular decision.

We were losing $30 a day with the assisted living facility, so that’s helped.

The state has a tendency to implement unfunded mandates, which makes it challenging on hospital districts.

One other thing that we’ve done is selling the clinic in Oroville.

We may get some (Obamacare) reimbursement instead of writing off charity care or bad debt. I am concerned about that.

From my own business point of view, I don’t know. I’m just waiting to see what happens.

• Should the hospital reconsider an assisted-living facility in the future, or continue forward without one? Why?

While the assisted living facility was important to the people living there and their families,

I think if you’re going to do that, you need to know what your reimbursements are going to be for not only the short term, but also the long term.

I would really be cautious about doing that again.

Assisted living facilities have different rules than boarding houses.

Name: Rosa Snider

Age: 39

Family: Husband John

Occupation: Business owner

Career/educational background: 17 years in medical field, 19 years advocacy 

• What does the hospital need to do to address changes in medical coverage under the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare)?

It’s difficult to tell at this point given the current situation.

• With almost $2 million in warrants owed, how would stabilize the hospital’s financial situation?

Without having had access to detailed accounting through records requests, I would say a good place to start would be looking at need services versus convenience, i.e. the coffee shop, realistic salaries.

• Should the hospital reconsider an assisted-living facility in the future, or continue forward without one? Why?

I personally hope to see an assisted living and a clinic, at some point.

Because that’s what our community has supported, what they were supporting and what many of us are still willing to support.

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