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Oak Valley Hospital Selected for International Visit
A contingent of health professionals came to Escalon and Oakdale on Jan. 28 from Central Asia, once again to learn about the workings of a small hospital district.

Last year the US Department of Commerce contacted Oak Valley Hospital District and arranged a visit of a group of hospital administrators and physicians from Central Asia, Western Eurasia, and the Caucasus. Eighteen mid to senior level healthcare executives came to Oakdale from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Moldova, Ukraine, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia and learned to improve their healthcare systems.

The visiting group apparently provided great reviews of the visit, and a return engagement with another group was arranged for this year.

The tour is part of the Commerce Department's International Trade Administration Special American Business International Training (SABIT) Program.

The goal of the SABIT program is to introduce modern healthcare management techniques and best practices to physicians and executives from Central Asia, with the intent they return home with the knowledge to make improvements within their own organizations and health care systems.

According to Susan Mendieta, public relations director for the Oak Valley Hospital District, OVHD was selected because of its rural healthcare setting. The delegation included representatives from mostly rural healthcare areas in their own countries, she said.

The visit of district facilities included tours of Escalon Community Ambulance and Escalon Community Health Center, and the central utility plant and maternity departments at Oak Valley Hospital.

A welcome session and get together was also held at the Oak Valley Medical Plaza.

The delegation was to continue on their tour of the US, which has included, and will include, Baltimore, Washington D.C., New York, San Francisco, and Sacramento.