A Note From Dennis Knox – February 2023

A Note From Dennis Knox – February 2023

Dennis Knox - MCMC CEO

MCMC Physicians, Physician Assistants, Nurse Practitioners, Registered Nurses, Medical Assistants, Certified Nursing Assistants, Administrative Assistants and all our clinic team members are an amazing group of people who serve their patients with dedication and a focus on improving their overall health. We are fortunate to have an exceptionally talented team and they deserve respect and acknowledgment for their efforts to provide our community with the absolute best care. February 1st through the 7th was National Patient Recognition Week, and our teams honor you not only this week but each and every day.

You are at the center of our mission to provide exceptional health services and experiences through person-centered care. This focus is at the core of every decision we make, even the most challenging. MCMC and the global healthcare industry are facing some of the toughest and most complex challenges in its history: chronic staffing shortages and razor thin margins. We have passed unpleasant and have moved on to heartrending.

Closing, hopefully temporarily, the Medical Oncology clinic due to Physician shortages was one of the toughest decisions I have made in my 44-year career. It is daunting to think that we are competing for three percent of the total Medical Oncologists in the entire country that serve in rural areas like The Dalles. I am very thankful for the dedication and compassion of our Celilo Staff who were able to navigate care for priority patients and find them Medical Oncology care in metro Portland. I know this wears on the staff and is even more difficult for the patients. Our Medical Oncology patients remain my focus and we remain hopeful that we will bring Medical Oncology back to The Dalles.

The stewardship of patient care is also part of patient week, I am immensely proud of the Cardiology Clinic and their dedication to their patients. Seventeen months ago, our Cardiology Clinic was experiencing Provider shortages, and our partnership with Adventist Health Portland and Northwest Regional Heart & Vascular has made an incredible difference. There is not a need for our community to drive to Portland – you can receive great care right here at home. The Clinic team is celebrating Heart Month this month, and our social platforms will have great heart educational information: heart health risk assessment, nutrition advice, what does a blood pressure reading mean, and heart disease information. Please be sure to follow the Mid-Columbia Medical Center Facebook or Instagram page to learn more about your heart health.

There are 861 talented MCMC employees that impact patient experiences every day. I am inspired by their resilience, passion and determination to push through the challenges and come out of these tough days even stronger.


Thank you to our patients and community for your trust in Mid-Columbia Medical Center.


Dennis Knox