A Health Center Serving the Needs of our Coal Miners
As a follow up to my "Adventure Down Into the Coal Mines"
blog post, I wanted to highlight the clinical component of my trip to
West Virginia. My friend Dr. Raymond D. Wells , is Alliance Coal's
on-site medical provider. For the past couple of years he has been
trying to describe to me the medical model of care that he has created
for the Alliance Coal mines. I did not fully understand his model until
I visited there. There are clinic sites at each of the coal operations.
Prior to the health centers having a permanent structures at all of the
mining locations, a traveling clinic provided medical services to
Alliance Coal employees and their families. Dr. Wells, pictured below,
and his staff are dedicated to providing the best medical care. It is
an outstanding model of an integrated healthcare system which will be
essential in the future. Dr. Wells utilizes telemedicine
technology to meet with his staff and see patients remotely. This has
created unbelievable efficiencies- more consults, more face-to-face,
less travel and so on. I was very impressed by the system and the
clinical team that works with Dr. Wells. Hermiety Van Laar (pictured
below) serves as the nurse practitioner at the Wheeling West Virginia
site. She does an outstanding job and the miners fully depend on her
for their daily health care needs.
Dr. Raymond Wells standing outside the Health Center at Tunnel Ridge.
Utilizing the telemedicine technology to speak with one of the nurse practitioners at another facility.
Inside the health center
The exterior of the health center located on-site at Tunnel Ridge.
L to R: Hermiety Van Laar, Nurse Practitioner and Dr. Raymond Wells, Medical Director