Skip to main content

New Nurse Practitioners and Care Teams Enhance Care and Access

November 21, 2019

Smith and Villarevia
Craig Smith, DO and Kathryn Villarevia, APRN-FNP
NORTH CONWAY, NH -- Family Nurse Practitioners Katie Villarevia and Jessica Lamontagne are now part of the primary care practice at Memorial Hospital’s Mount Washington Valley Rural Health. Both are part of care teams which pair doctors with advance practice professionals. Katie is a member of a care team working closely with Dr. Craig Smith, and Jessica with Dr. Ray Rabideau. The care team model facilitates close collaboration between providers and other clinicians to provide coordinated care and greater access for patients.

Villarevia will be a familiar face for many patients, as before becoming a certified family nurse practitioner, she was a registered nurse at Memorial. She will be a key member of one of the care teams within the family medicine practice at the hospital. Katie explained, “Dr. Craig Smith and I will be sharing a panel of patients. I’m looking forward to collaborating with him, providing excellent care and responding to patients’ needs.”

Patients may ask, “Why can’t I just see my doctor?” Villarevia would like patients to understand that they will still see their doctor in addition to others within the care team, all with a goal to open up access to appointments and improve quality of care.

“They will likely go back and forth between us, maybe seeing Dr. Smith first, then following up with me. We will review patient records together to be sure we are developing a collaborative treatment plan. We will have a shared electronic health record. Dr. Smith will make himself available to me when I need to consult with him. If I’m seeing a patient and have a question or concern, he will be accessible.”

“I do think that with this new care model and having medical providers sharing a panel of patients and working closely together will increase access to care. We keep a number of same day care appointment slots open for things that are urgent.”

Technology is a big piece of the care team model too. Villarevia stated, “This is my first opportunity to use the shared electronic health record system, EPIC. I can see that when utilized well it’s extremely functional. There is access to providers using the patient portal, MyChart, which is the best way to get through to them. The entire care team monitors MyChart messages and ensures they are forwarded to the appropriate care team member for a timely resolution.”

Rabideau and Lamontagne
Ray Rabideau, MD and Jessica Lamontagne, APRN-FNP
The care team model may be new to some patients, but it is a proven way to deliver better care and more coordinated care in a complex healthcare system. A patient’s care is still overseen by their provider, a doctor or advance practice professional. However, a team is assembled to jointly ensure all aspects of care are in place. An advance practice professional, also known as a nurse practitioner or physician assistant, has undergone extensive training to be a primary provider with clinical skills to support healthcare needs just as a doctor does.

Katie is joined by Jessica Lamontagne as the second of two new advance practice professionals. Jessica grew up in Maine and always vacationed in Mount Washington Valley. After serving in the Air Force, she had a goal to make North Conway her home. She stated, “I am excited to be working in Primary Care where I get to treat all ages. I love being a Nurse Practitioner and find it extremely gratifying when I help someone achieve wellness.” Together, they should serve to make appointments more readily available to patients.

For more information, visit them online at www.memorialhospitalnh.org/primarycare.

News from Around MaineHealth

View All
Memorial Hospital Reminds Parents to Check Children's Immunization Status
Dr. Wenda Saunders, a pediatrician at Memorial Hospital’s Mt. Washington Rural Health Care is encouraging families to get caught up with immunizations.
Memorial Hospital Adds Asymptomatic COVID-19 Testing
Appointments are required for patients without COVID-19 symptoms who would like to be tested.
Memorial Hospital Recognizes Employees and Medical Staff with Annual Awards
Memorial Hospital hosted virtual and socially distant awards ceremonies to honor an Employee of the Year, present a Teamwork Award and recognize staff members for their years of service.
Memorial Hospital Adjusts Visitor Limits
Memorial Hospital has updated its visitor policy, allowing some additional visitors while continuing to focus on patient and staff safety.
Memorial Golf Tournament Tees Up, Addresses Safety Concerns
Golfers usually measure distances in hundreds of yards. When Memorial Hospital hosts its 40th Annual Golf Tournament on July 16, six-feet will be the most important distance to remember.
Credit rating agencies reaffirm strength of MaineHealth
Two credit rating agencies continued to give northern New England’s largest health system high marks for its financial strength even though the COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant financial impact.
MaineHealth Receives Over $800,000 in Federal Funding for Telehealth Program
FCC awarded MaineHealth for costs associated with rapidly expanding the health system’s telehealth infrastructure and technology in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
40th Annual Memorial Hospital Open Golf Tournament Is a Go
Proceeds will support Memorial Hospital’s new Medical Assistant program.
Memorial Hospital Announces Healthcare Scholarships
Students studying biology, human development, osteopathic medicine, nursing and athletic training are among the recipients of scholarships from Memorial Hospital’s annual scholarship funds.
MaineHealth and Memorial Hospital establish safety protocols and sets priorities for bringing back some services amid COVID-19
Universal masking, screening and testing protocols are already in place as the health care system brings back surgeries and other procedures for those patients for whom waiting could have medical consequences.