Pullman Regional Hospital



Celebrating National Hospital Week

This year’s Hospital Week is presented by the Pullman Regional Hospital’s Center for Learning & Innovation and will include several activities for both our staff and the community the week of May 10-14. The theme of this year’s activities is Healing through the Arts. We invite you to join us in participating in these events!



Design Thinking

Improving care through innovative solutions.

Education & Engagement

Empowering staff and the community through learning opportunities

Innovation Network

Bringing together people and resources to shape our strategy

Center for Learning & Innovation

About the Center for Learning & Innovation

Bold Visions & Big Ideas for the Future of Healthcare

Use the power of creativity and commitment to innovation to enable Pullman Regional Hospital to be a regional leader in healthcare, a model provider of continuous learning, and the standard in workforce development.

“There’s never been a better time to think about healthcare differently than now. Amidst the uncertainty, this is an exciting time, and the Center for Learning and Innovation is positioning Pullman Regional Hospital to thrive.”-Scott Adams, CEO


Goals & Areas of Focus to Maximize Impact
  • Provide active coordination of the Pullman Regional Hospital learning and innovation ecosystem
  • Direct community education and outreach efforts which result in improvements in the overall health of the region's population.
  • Develop and strengthen partnerships and collaborations which support innovation and learning activities.
  • Identify, organize, and/or sponsor key events to foster innovation and learning and provide venues for collaboration and partnership for our region
  • Selectively identify and conscientiously pursue new and/or improved services and products which support Pullman Regional Hospital's strategic priorities
  • Pursue grant funding opportunities that support learning and innovation

Do you have questions, ideas or just want to learn more about supporting innovation efforts through philanthropy?


Design Thinking

SSV anim and xray

Speech Sounds Visualized

The Center for Learning & Innovation has created the Speech Sounds Visualized app to show how English speech sounds are formed through unique x-ray videos and animation. In partnership with Pullman Regional Hospital Speech Language Pathologist, Keri Jones, this interactive teaching tool increases engagement and learning in speech therapy and education.

Learn More


Maternity Gown 

Pullman Regional Hospital has patented a new hospital gown based on a prototype by Laurie Heimbigner, retired BirthPlace nurse. The two-piece garment provides modesty and comfort to mothers and promotes skin-to-skin contact. This unique design also allows for monitors to be placed and stay in place without an obtrusive process.

Learn More


Virtual Reality

The use of non-pharmacological distraction techniques has proven to effectively manage anxiety from stressful healthcare experiences, from blowing bubbles and reading books, to utilizing technology like iPads. Most recently, we began using Virtual Reality (VR) devices, thanks to the work of the Center for Learning & Innovation and grant funds from the Auxiliary.

Learn More

Motivational Interviewing-1

Motivational Interviewing

Pullman Regional Hospital continusously pursues improvements to the patient experience. Motivational Interviewing is one way we are looking to enhance interactions with your providers and improve health outcomes. Built on a relational foundation, Motivational Interviewing is an approach that is people-centered, collaborative, and focused on strengthening a patient's internal motivation and commitment to change. Through a federal HRSA grant, we are training clinical staff to utilize this innovative, research-based intervention.

Learn More

Post Jeopardy Friday Roundup Grpahic-1

Innovation Jeopardy

This year, the Center for Learning & Innovation took the Health Innovation Summit virtual with a Jeopardy game designed to test your knowledge of innovation at Pullman Regional Hospital! 

Play Jeopardy


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MARTTI Translation

When it comes to healthcare, communication is critical. We implemented a new on-demand, HIPAA-compliant interpretation service to help providers communicate effectively with patients who are deaf, hard of hearing, or have limited English proficiency. The new system serves as an interpreter on wheels, providing access to certified medical interpreters at the touch of a button.

Learn More


Education & Engagement

Aging Mastery Program

Funded under a National Council on Aging (NCOA) Grant in 2012, PRHCLI  is one of the 26 original NCOA’s The Aging Mastery Program® (AMP) partner program sites. The AMP®-CLI partnership is a comprehensive and fun approach to aging well that encourages people to take actions to enhance their health, financial well-being, social connectedness, and overall quality of life. Stay tuned for information about the next session.

Coffee Club

Join us for some social time to reconnect with friends during this time of isolation and social distancing. Bring your cup and hop on over to our monthly Zoom call! These occur on the 2nd and 4th Friday of every month. Call (509) 336-7404 to request the link.


Health Education Art

Health Education Art or H.E.ART is a community health & wellness partnership between Pullman Regional Hospital’s Center for Learning & Innovation (PRH/CLI) & WSU’s Children Center (WSU-CC).  HEART’s goal is helping children understand and process the COVID-19 pandemic through art by providing children with a vehicle to help them adapt to change and engage in learning and express themselves when they can’t find the words. 

The photos below feature a variety of projects, including Petri Dish Creations, Citizen Scientist Observation Art, and Masterpieces of Mother Nature. 


Children's Artwork - 1


This gallery features artwork that is all about emotions, self-care, caring for others, and things we can do to relax or calm ourselves.


Children's Artwork - 2


Health Tech Talks


Jean's Reads and Recommendations

Join 28-year Pullman Regional Hospital volunteer Jean Pedersen and the National Network of Libraries of Medicine Book Club as they explore health and social issues via literature. Each month Jean will read and review one of the NNLM's recommended books. Read along and tell us what you think!

January 2021 - “Hey, Kiddo” by Jarrett J. Krosoczka and “Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget” by Sarah Hepola.

February 2021 - "The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae" by Stephanie Butland and "The Open Heart Club" by Gabriel Brownstein

March 2021 - "In Defense of Food" by Michael Pollan and "Delicious!" A Novel by Ruth Reichi

April 2021 - "The Crowd & the Cosmos, Adventures in the Zooniverse" by Chris Linott and "The Field Guide to Citizen Science: How You Can Contribute to Scientific Research and Make a Difference" By Cavalier, Hoffman, Cooper


The Health Podcast & Blog

We have a robust library of health resources to help you live your healthiest life. 


Women's Wellness Wednesdays

Click here to RSVP

  • September 2020 - Katie Hryniewicz, M.D. - 10 Tips to Cope with Back to School Distance Learning
  • October 2020- Laura Rehwaldt, MA, LMHC. - How to Positively Measure Our Health and Quality of Life
  • November 2020 - Carrie Coen, DPT. - Joy of Living Passionately & Defining Personal Wellness
  • December 2020 - Chanel Drucker, Dietetic Intern for Nutrition Therapy Services - Nutrition and Immunity
  • January 2021 - Jessica Rivers, Advance Care Planning Coordinator - Living Well Means Being Prepared
  • February - Dr. Gerald Early - The Heart of the Matter: Cardiovascular Disease
  • March - Wild at Art of Moscow: Health and Healing
  • April - Diane Whittick, RN - The COVID-19 Pandemic: A Year Later


Autism Spectrum Support Group 

Is your life impacted by a family member with Autism Spectrum Disorder? Our Occupational and Speech Therapists identified a need for families and friends to come together to share experiences and resources. View the web calendar to find the next meeting.


Breast Cancer Support Group

The Breast Cancer Support Group offers a warm, friendly, supportive environment for the newly diagnosed and those in recovery and survival stages of breast cancer.  We offer encouragement and information to anyone in the Palouse region with a personal history of breast cancer, and we provide education about this illness and possible treatments. We meet the third Wednesday of each month from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm, at Pullman Regional Hospital. No fee.

If you have any questions, call Cathy Murphy, RN, (509) 432-6238,  or Birgitta Ingemanson, (509) 332-3002


Breastfeeding Support Group

Research shows that continued breastfeeding support is crucial for helping moms meet their breastfeeding goals.  Bring yourself, your baby and your questions and we will discuss, troubleshoot and provide information in a warm, fun, friendly environment with a lactation consultant and other new parents. The class will be offered every other Monday, rotating with the Prenatal Breastfeeding group. This Group is facilitated by Laura Keogh, IBCLC and there is no charge or fee to attend and no registration required. To view the schedule of available Breastfeeding Support Group meetings, please visit our calendar of events


Caregivers Coffee and Support Group

The group meets the 2nd and 4th Monday of the month from 2:00 - 4:00 pm at Regency Senior Living Community in Pullman. Please contact Melissa Johnson, MSW (509) 332-0365. View the events calendar for more info.


Community Grief Support

The open adult grief support group provides a safe place for pause, share your grief, receive support, and find resources. Meetings are held on the 3rd Friday of the month from 12:30-2:00 pm at Bishop Place in Pullman, WA. For more information please contact Annie Pillers (509) 332-4414 or email griefsupport@palouse.com. View the events calendar for more info.


Fibromyalgia Lupus Education & Support Group 

Fibromyalgia and Lupus Education & Support Group is designed to provide a confidential, caring, non-threatening environment where people can share their concerns, fears, strengths, and hopes. It is not designed to provide professional therapy. The purpose of the group is to provide information, education, awareness, and support. FLSG provides an opportunity to reach out to others who have had similar challenges and fosters an improved understanding of lifestyle management. Spouses, partners, and caregivers are welcome to attend the education meetings.

Meetings are held every fourth Tuesday of the month in conference rooms A/B of Pullman Regional Hospital from 4:30 to 5:30 pm. If you have any questions please call or email Noel Nicolai at (509) 336-7404 or at Noel.Nicolai@pullmanregional.orgView the events calendar for more info.


Palouse Mental Illness & Advocacy Support Group

The mental illness support group meets on the 2nd Sunday of every month in Pullman Regional Hospital Conference Room A from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. Please contact Zoe Cooley (208) 835-3071 or Lorraine Cline (509) 758-0284 for more information. View the events calendar for more info.


Palouse Parkinson's Support Group

Meet other people who have been touched by Parkinson’s. Meetings are free of cost and are held at the Good Samaritan Village on the last Wednesday of each month from 2:00 - 3:00 pm. Please contact dpvet@turbonet.com for more information.


Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Support Group

Join us to find out more about life with a TBI. Receive support, share experiences, hear from others, and learn about the latest trends and information. The group meets on the 4th Monday of the month from 6-8 pm in Conference Room C at Pullman Regional Hospital. Contact Diana, Certified BEST Support Group Facilitator, by emailing Palouse.TBI.Network@gmail.comView the events calendar for more info.


Type 1 Diabetes Virtual Support Group

For more information contact Jacki Riley at jackiriley@yahoo.com. Find us on Facebook.

Work in Progress AA Group

Join us on Tuesdays from 7:00 - 9:00 pm in Conference Room C of Pullman Regional Hospital. For more information, please contact Jonathan, (360) 628-0097 or Matthew (360)-380-7078. View the events calendar for more info.

Credible Health Websites


Palouse Resource Guide

Connecting individuals, families, and communities to available resources in Whitman and Latah counties. Learn more.


Health Resource Library

The Wilson Health Resource Library at Pullman Regional Hospital is a community lending library with a collection of resources on a number of health-related topics and material for recreational reading. It offers access to a computer, TV, CD player, Blu-ray player and Blu-ray movies, puzzles, and activities for children.



Pullman Regional recognizes that a cancer diagnosis can be an overwhelming and confusing time for patients and their families and friends. Finding accurate information is essential to understanding the disease process, existing treatments and resources available. This list of local and national resources will assist you in finding information that is reliable.



Do you or someone you know have diabetes? Managing diabetes often feels like comparing apples to oranges—complicated. Pullman Regional is the place to begin your diabetes education. Our certified staff and support group can help you to live well with your diagnosis. This list of local and national resources will assist you in finding information that is reliable.


Heart Health

A healthy heart and a healthy life go hand-in-hand. Heart disease is the number one killer in the US, so learning how to manage your cardiac health can add years to your life. If you want to learn how to prevent heart disease, the following resources will provide reliable and accurate information.



Feel invisible at times? Your pain is real. Finding information that will help others understand your disease, how to treat it and the resources available can start with Pullman Regional Hospital. This list of local and national resources will assist you in finding information that is reliable.


Smoking/Tobacco Cessation Resources

Smoking raises your risks for cancer, lung disease and heart disease. While quitting can be difficult, you don't have to go through it alone. While Pullman Regional Hospital does not offer this service, there are many programs that have been established to help smokers who want to quit. This list of local and national resources will assist you in finding information that is reliable.


Caregiving, Loss, & Grief

Whether you are in the position of caregiver or coping with a loss, it may be hard for you to feel optimistic about the future right now. Pullman Regional would like to offer support as you heal.


Memory Care

Concerns about a friend or loved ones forgetfulness that continues to occur could be more than a simple “senior moment.” It is important to speak to a physician about memory loss or other symptoms of Alzheimer's or dementia. Our region offers education and support to those looking for help.  


Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson’s disease does not just affect the person living with it – it affects the entire family and their community of friends. Our certified staff and support group can assist re-establishing both internal and external health. This list of local and national resources will assist you in in finding information that is reliable.


Poison Center

The National Capital Poison Center hotline provides 24/7 telephone guidance for poison emergencies, free of charge, by Certified Specialists in Poison Information, with backup by board-certified physician toxicologists. The National Capital Poison Center has also developed an online app and website that allows users to receive free, confidential and accurate advice about potential poisonings.


Traumatic Brain Injury

Please note: All volunteer programs at Pullman Regional Hospital are temporarily suspended due to COVID-19.

Job shadow and volunteer opportunities exist for students interested in learning more about the healthcare industry. Click here to learn more.


Innovation Network

The Center for Learning & Innovation exists to encourage new ideas and bold visions in an effort to cultivate an environment where change thrives.


Washington State University/ Pullman Regional Hospital Working Partnerships

Pullman Regional Hospital is providing significant opportunities for WSU students and faculty in areas of research, hands on learning, and community engagement.


Whitman County Health Network

Created as part of a HRSA Network Development grant, the Whitman County Health Network (WCHN) represents the united voice of Whitman County constituencies in the development, coordination and delivery of health and human services. 

The vision of this organization is to:

  • Improve family and individual health and well-being,
  • Improve access to health and human services,
  • Reduce costs of current delivery processes and redirect savings toward targeted, strategic early intervention. 
  • Jeff Guyett - Community Action Center
  • Lauren Noble - Greater Columbia Accountable Community of Health
  • Jac Davies - Northwest Rural Health Network
  • Theresa Kwate- Palouse Medical
  • Kelly Sanders - Palouse Pediatrics
  • Shelley Bull - Palouse Psychiatry and Behavioral Health
  • Mike Berney - Palouse River Counseling
  • Becky Highfill - Pullman Regional Hospital
  • Deborah Watson - Pullman Regional Hospital
  • Elizabeth Hillman - Pullman Regional Hospital
  • Erin Sedam - Pullman Regional Hospital
  • Jeannie Eylar - Pullman Regional Hospital
  • Scott Adams - Pullman Regional Hospital
  • Karly Port - Pullman Regional Hospital Clinic Network
  • Chris Skidmore - Whitman County Public Health
  • Hank Hanigan - Whitman Hospital and Medical Clinics
  • Laurie Gronning - Whitman Hospital and Medical Clinics
  • Bonnie DeVries - Washington State University
  • Kai Nevala - Yakima Valley Farm Workers / Unify Dental


Palouse Discovery Science Center

Pullman Regional Hospital Center for Learning & Innovation has partnered with Palouse Discovery Science Center to create 'EveryBODY Healthy', an exhibit focused on health and wellness education. 





Meet the Staff


Becky Highfill

Director of the Center for Learning & Innovation

Becky Highfill is the Director of the Center for Learning & Innovation at Pullman Regional Hospital. Highfill will direct the activities of the Center for Learning & Innovation while continuing to administer the hospital’s grant program. The Center for Learning & Innovation was created to explore alternative models of care delivery, specifically to improve the patient experience, lower costs, and improve population health.

(509) 332-2033 | Becky.Highfill@pullmanregional.org



Noel Nicolai, PhD.

Healthier Communities Coordinator, Center for Learning & Innovation

Healthier Communities Coordinator for the Center for Learning & Innovation Dr. Nicolai coordinates community education and outreach programs for Pullman Regional Hospital as well as Telehealth/Telemedicine administration and oversight for the resource library. The Center for Learning and Innovation adds to her role by adding greater exposure to partnership opportunities, prevention and awareness programs and grant writing.

(509) 336-7404 | Noel.Nicolai@pullmanregional.org


Dr Early

Gerald Early, MD

Chief Medical & Innovation Officer

Gerald Early, M.D., serves as the Chief Medical & Innovation Officer at Pullman Regional Hospital. Dr. Early came to Pullman from Truman Medical Centers in Kansas City, Missouri, where he practiced thoracic surgery and held an academic appointment as an associate professor of medicine at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. He is triple board certified in general surgery, critical care and cardiothoracic surgery. He has extensive experience in clinical quality initiatives and patient safety activities.