Kootenai | Kootenai Health | Issue 1, 2024

Why did you pick your specialty? I chose to pursue neurosurgery for the opportunity to care for patients and families who are facing brain or spine disorders. The privilege of counseling these patients and offering surgical intervention (when appropriate) is something that I take very seriously and am honored to undertake. Neurosurgery requires ongoing lifelong learning, staying on the cutting edge of technology and the pursuit of mastering surgical techniques. What can patients expect when they first meet with you? My goal is that patients can expect that we will sit down together and start building a trusting relationship. I would like to get to know my patients and their families and listen closely to why they have been sent to see a neurosurgeon. We will view their imaging together, and I will explain my interpretation. Then I will offer my best and most straightforward advice on next steps for them, whether surgical or nonsurgical, and include alternative options if warranted. What are some of your hobbies? I enjoy cooking and barbecuing, fishing, hunting, traveling, snowboarding, visiting national parks, hiking, and spending time with family. What drew you to Kootenai Health? I was born in northern Idaho, and my parents plus other extended family live throughout this region. When I learned of this opportunity at Kootenai, I was excited and eager to return home and help provide neurosurgical care in the community. What is your favorite healthy tip? Stay active with regular, challenging, physical and mental activities that you enjoy. Please stay safe out there (wear helmets, seat belts, eye protection, etc.). Deborah Long, APRN, CNP Kootenai Clinic Family Medicine Residency Tell us a bit about you and your family. I was born and raised in Idaho and live with my husband, Scott, and 18-year-old daughter, Brooke, in Spirit Lake. Scott is the owner and operator of Northwest Powerwash and Detail. Brooke just graduated and races snowmobile hill climbs professionally for Ski-Doo. She plans to go to medical school next year. I have a son, Joel, who is married to Tayler, and they have my perfect grandchildren: Allie, 4, and Wyatt, 2. Joel is a captain for Timberlake Fire District, and Tayler is a teacher at Post Falls Middle School. They also live in Spirit Lake. Where did you receive your degree? Gonzaga University. I have always practiced in this community. Why did you pick your specialty? I worked as an RN for 10 years prior to becoming a nurse practitioner. I knew that I wanted to do direct patient care and be able to influence and help with improved patient health and outcomes, so I went into primary care. What can patients expect when they first meet with you? I am outgoing and down to earth. I try to make patient visits comfortable and build relationships with my patients. —Continued on page 12 KH.ORG 11