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Local kids will be able to see OHSU specialists locally

A Jackson County building will be used by Oregon Health & Science University specialists working with special needs kids, saving local families a trip to Portland for medical care.

OHSU specialists are working this week in the Jackson County Health and Human Services building on Holly Street, fixing and adjusting medical devices such as wheelchairs and splints. They are also seeing kids and their families who are living with a range of issues, including Down syndrome and spina bifida, said Ann Ackles, nursing supervisor for Jackson County Public Health.

"We have a broad number of kids who have special health care needs who would have to go to Portland to see these specialists," Ackles said. "It's a wonderful opportunity for us to support our kids with special health care needs. It's exciting that there is a convenient place for them to get care."

Earlier this month, the Jackson County Board of Commissioners approved an agreement to allow OHSU to use rooms in the Jackson County Health and Human Services building for 28 days this fiscal year.

The OHSU specialists are using spaces that include exam rooms for medical care and a conference room to adjust wheelchairs and other medical devices.

OHSU is reimbursing the county $2,920 for use of the space this fiscal year.

Ackles said the OHSU medical care specialists will visit Jackson County 10 months each year and go to Klamath County two months per year.

Jackson County will host the medical equipment adjustment clinic on a quarterly basis, she said.

"It's good to see an efficient, collaborative approach to providing health care to the citizens of Jackson County," said Jackson County Commissioner Rick Dyer.

Staff reporter Vickie Aldous can be reached at 541-776-4486 or valdous@mailtribune.com. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/VickieAldous.