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Hoodland Clinic Closure Stuns Community

By Ty Walker

Hoodland Clinic Closure Stuns Community

The Adventist Health Hoodland Clinic (placed under the umbrella of Adventist Health Tillamook in 2014) has announced that April 1 will be the last day for patient visits before the Welches clinic closes its doors permanently.

Many in the Mt. Hood community were shocked when patients received a letter about the impending closure, addressed three weeks before the clinic’s final day.

“Due to challenges associated with recruitment of associates and qualified providers, we regret to inform you that the Adventist Health Hoodland Clinic will be closing,” physician and Adventist Tillamook Clinic executive Gina Seufert wrote in the letter.

Clinic staff will stay on site through April 15 to handle prescription refills and follow-up appointments relative to diagnostic results. Adventist Health Tillamook encourages patients in need of medical attention to visit its other clinics in Estacada or Sandy.

Meanwhile, John and Caryn Tilton, owners of the Salmon River Professional Center, are trying to find another healthcare provider to fill the vacancy in their building. The lease with Adventist Health Tillamook expires at the end of July.

“We are making good progress towards replacing the Adventist clinic with another healthcare provider,” Caryn said. “We have interest from more than one direction, and we are pursuing the possibilities with urgency. We want to get the best fit for our community.”

Like many in the Hoodland area (where the couple has lived for 49 years), the Tiltons were surprised by Tillamook Adventist Health’s abrupt decision. “After discussions with hospital representatives, we thought we were moving successfully toward a renewed five-year lease in July,” Caryn said.

As landlords, the Tiltons said they received official notice of the closure in their mailbox on March 11. Although the time frame meets the notice requirement in the lease agreement, Caryn said she would have preferred an earlier notification out of common courtesy and consideration for the impact on the community.

“In addition to losing our family doctor and urgent care service, like you, the community, we are also losing our cornerstone renter,” Caryn said. There is no other urgent care provider in the entire Mt. Hood corridor.
The Tiltons were well on their way to reaching their goal of making their professional building the healthcare hub of Welches. With the Hoodland Clinic as their anchor, they landed tenants like AMR Ambulance 11 years ago and a chiropractor and autism specialist more recently. Then Adventist Health Tillamook pulled the plug.

“I can understand that the medical industry and hospitals are in crisis mode due to insurance, due to COVID, due to the enormous amount of people at their emergency room doors,” Caryn said.

“And I can understand that in order to achieve a more financially lucrative business model during crisis times, dropping a community like Hoodland and picking up rural hospitals like the Dalles would make sense. What I don’t understand is why they would pull the rug out from under a 40-year practice in a community, with just three-weeks notice. To me, that’s unforgivable. It’s a sudden and shocking departure from their advertised image of ‘community caring.’”

Dr. Murlan Grise, founder of the Hoodland Health Clinic, was the family doctor in Welches for almost 40 years. He started his private practice in 1983, then sold it to Portland Adventist in 1997 but remained the doctor there until December 2022, when he moved to Utah. For the last six years of his tenure, clinic management had changed hands to Tillamook Adventist.

Dr. Grise said he would probably still be in Welches if it weren’t for some of the issues going on with Tillamook Adventist. “But it’s all water under the bridge now,” he said.

“Portland Adventist was wonderful to work for,” Grise said. “I can’t say the same for Tillamook. I had a difficult time with Tillamook Adventist.”

Differences over the way things were run weighed in his decision to move to St. George, Utah, where he volunteers, continues to practice medicine part-time, and is closer to his terminally ill grandson.
Grise said he was “very, very disappointed” to hear about the Hoodland Clinic shutting its doors. “It’s a huge loss for that community. A lot of the patients are housebound. It’s difficult for them to get around and the clinic is close by. I’m very sad that they’re losing the clinic.”

“I put my heart and soul into that clinic and raised my family there,” he said. “I’m indebted to the community. They supported my clinic for almost 40 years. I had a great staff.”

After Grise’s departure, Dr. Reed Epstein took over the helm at Hoodland Clinic. He stepped down less than a year into the job.

The Tiltons are holding onto their dream of having a hub for healthcare in Hoodland at their Salmon River Professional Center at 24461 E. Welches Road. As part of their marketing campaign, they launched a new website, You can check their progress at under Caryn Tilton.

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