Mary's story of rural health care

Mary Selecky is proud to call Colville, Washington her home.

She enjoys her close-knit community and the continuous mountain views.

“If you see your doctor in the middle of the grocery store, you can ask them a question,” Mary said.

Mary has served in many health care leadership roles in her life, including 15 years as the Washington State Secretary of Health, so she understands the importance of rural health care access.

This becomes a personal need for Mary when she experienced a significant fall in July 2023. Mary tripped over a rug and suffered a large hematoma in her leg. She received care at Providence Mount Carmel Hospital in Colville, where she needed surgery. After surgery, Mary met with a Providence caregiver who works on the wound care team. Mary learned she would need to come back to the hospital three times a week for wound maintenance.

“I got to know the whole wound care team so well. They work in such a good rhythm,” Mary said.

For months, Mary has been going back to the hospital to have her wound cleaned and wrapped. Wound care nurses like Diana Gruner make Mary comfortable with engaging conversation.

“Everybody who walks through my doors is vulnerable,” Gruner said. “Having a good rapport with our patients helps them heal – their vulnerability turns to hope.”

Mary’s wound is nearly healed after a long and successful care plan. She was always confident in the team at Mount Carmel. Providence Mount Carmel Hospital has been recognized for their consistent and excellent care. They’ve ranked as a top critical access hospital in the nation for three years in a row by the Chartis Center for Rural Health.

“I love living in this town — I get a little emotional,” Mary said. “It’s a wonderful community supportive of everything that is here. We are blessed to have people work together to get things done.”

To learn more about the services provided at Providence Mount Carmel Hospital, visit