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FILE — Ashlea Walton, a second-year nursing student at Yakima Valley College, left, prepares medication for a patient as she trains with Kylie Ergeson, a registered nurse, Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020, at Virginia Mason Memorial hospital in Yakima, Wash.

To the editor — In this season of Thanksgiving, I have a lot to be thankful for. Especially over the last nearly two years of COVID, we at the UW School of Medicine-Gonzaga University Health Partnership are very thankful for the physicians and health care workers in Yakima, who, despite unprecedented stress and hardship, continued to train our medical students.

We desperately need more high-quality, well-trained physicians and we simply could not do it without the health care providers in Yakima. The UW School of Medicine has developed an extensive network of hundreds of physicians throughout Eastern and Central Washington who train medical students, just as they were once trained by their mentors. With added layers of complexity from COVID, they persevered, understanding this is a unique opportunity for medical students to learn in a pandemic situation.

We are grateful for each physician, nurse, physician assistant, medical assistant and health care professional who contributes to our students’ medical education. Because of you, we can deliver top-ranked medical education to train the next generation of excellent physicians for the Yakima community and beyond.

DR. GEOFF JONES

Assistant Clinical Dean

Eastern and Central WA

University of Washington School of Medicine

Spokane