Longstanding & New Primary Care Providers to staff the New St. Vincent Family Health Center
Dr. Lisa Zwerdlinger, a family medicine provider in Lake County for 23 years and owner of Rocky Mountain Family Practice (RMFP) for 16 years, is gifting her family medicine practice to St. Vincent Health. Dr. Zwerdlinger also serves as a senior staff member at St. Vincent Health (SVH), as Chief Medical Officer and hospitalist. With this move, St. Vincent Medical Clinic and RMFP will merge on June 1, 2021, and the new primary care practice will be called St. Vincent Family Health Center. The practice will provide comprehensive care for people of all ages at its location at 735 Hwy. 24 South in Leadville.
“I came to Leadville because I had a mission. That was to deliver high-quality healthcare using evidence-based medicine to the people of Lake County. Because they deserve it,” says Dr. Zwerdlinger. “By gifting my practice, I leave a legacy and have the assurance that people will be cared for long past my departure. Lake County has been very kind to me. I’d like to give back.”
Dr. Zwerdlinger and advance practice providers Amy King, certified physician assistant, and Lauren Huffman and Kia Tamaki Harrold—both family nurse practitioners—along with all RMFP staff, will become employed by St. Vincent Health. A new physician assistant, Jason Wright, MPAS, EMPA-C, is joining the practice in June. Dr. Zwerdlinger’s clinic building and medical equipment have been negotiated for purchase by SVH.
“This is an intentional step to promote alignment of resources and increased medical services,” says SVH CEO Brett Antczak. “It’s a new day for healthcare in Lake County with our new hospital, and this merger means more integrated services for the community.” Antczak adds that Dr. Zwerdlinger has been an advocate for increased services and a key advisor in the selection of new specialty and primary care physicians at the new facility.
Dr. Zwerdlinger emphasizes that the care patients have come to know at RMFP will continue seamlessly as the practice transitions to St. Vincent Family Health Center. “I’m confident our patients won’t notice much of a change,” says Dr. Zwerdlinger. “People will still have access to their favorite providers and all they have to do is call and schedule an appointment.”
Family medicine and urgent care will continue to be offered at the health center. Additionally, 24/7 urgent care will be offered at St. Vincent Health’s new hospital.
Dr. Zwerdlinger adds that telehealth appointments and her house call program are among the things that have made RMFP unique. Those programs will not only be maintained, but likely expanded.
“Although I have many roles, like wife and mother, I am always a physician. This merger allows me to focus on what I’m meant to do in my life’s work,” says Dr. Zwerdlinger. “That’s to take care of patients. Help our new hospital. And have better coordinated care between our health systems.”
St. Vincent Health and RMFP will be in contact with patients in the coming weeks with more details about St. Vincent Family Health Center. Questions and comments may be addressed to Karen Onderdonk, Chief Branding Officer at St. Vincent Health at 719-486-7135 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or CEO Brett Antczak at 719-486-7161 or email@example.com.