• Our Mission:
    Gastroenterology Associates is dedicated to providing high quality, community-driven digestive health care and wellness planning, including diagnosis, evaluation and treatment of digestive disease.
  • Core Values:
    1. Kindness
    2. Knowledge Sharing
    3. Respect
    4. Commitment
    5. Collaboration

Welcome to Our Practice

Gastroenterology Associates welcomes you!

At GA, we provide best practice gastroenterology care to the southern Puget Sound region by focusing on our patient’s experience and continually striving to improve safety, quality, accessibility, efficiency and cost containment. Our Gastroenterology Board Certified physicians specialize in gastroenterology, hepatology and related endoscopy procedures.

Our Board-Certified Advanced Practice Providers – ARNPs, PA-Cs and CRNAs – work closely with our physicians to provide our patients with the compassionate and evidence-based care they deserve. At GA, our core values of knowledge sharing, respect, kindness, commitment and collaboration guide us daily in providing excellent patient care.

Online Reviews

We appreciate the many positive online reviews our patients take the time to post about their experiences with GA. We are an independently owned local company with nine physician owners who pour their hearts and souls into the practice of good medicine to serve this community. It’s heartwarming to hear from our patients who find those qualities reflected in the GI care they receive and in their interactions with our providers and staff. Please also know that Gastroenterology Associates takes very seriously any concern an individual patient may have about their care. When needed, we have a process to review concerns and we follow it closely with the aim of improving our patient’s experience and updating our policies and processes.

In healthcare our hands are tied in terms of responding to any specific online review or statement. Simply by replying to an online post we would be crossing the line in terms of protecting the health information of our patient(s), which includes something as simple as confirming the patient was seen at GA, let alone any specific information about their care or experience. We truly strive every day to ensure our patients are cared for with safe, high quality and empathetic care and trust that you understand that online comments are made from one perspective excluding the other point of view, which may have been an entirely different experience.

Living with COVID-19 (Coronavirus):

Your health and safety are our first priority. COVID-19 created a global pandemic being new in 2020 and with continued research data and information being released frequently. As WA State adjusts to this ever-changing pandemic, Gastroenterology Associates providers continually follow this influx of information including CDC, national GI tri-Societies (ACG, AGA, ASGE) and local and WA State public health department and the Governor's office recommendations. 

If you have been diagnosed with COVID in the past 10 days, have a temp >100.4 and/or new onset cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing or at least two of the following: fever, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat or new loss of taste or smell, please cancel or reschedule your appointment (360-413-8250). Please also cancel or reschedule if you have had contact within last 10 days with a person showing symptoms of, being tested for or having diagnosis of COVID-1. Patients with a positive COVID test can return to the GA building on the 11th after symptoms began (assuming no continued fever and resolving symptoms).

As a healthcare facility, we continue to require all patients/visitors (vaccinated or not) to wear a mask that covers both the mouth and the nose. A clear face shield is not an acceptable form of facial covering by itself.  It must be accompanied by direct covering of the mouth and nose. 

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What we know:

  • The best way to prevent illness is to become fully vaccinated and to avoid being exposed to this virus.
  • The CDC is recommending the new "bivalent" COVID vaccine booster, which has been available since Sept. 2, 2022.
  • Please use this WA State DOH website to find out if you are currently eligible for vaccination and where you might locate vaccine:  https://www.doh.wa.gov/Emergen...
  • Governor Inslee is ending the State of Emergency in WA as of Oct. 31, 2022, related to the COVID pandemic although some requirements remain for healthcare facilities, including masking.
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GA Protecting Your Health:

At Gastroenterology Associates, we have additional measures in place to help protect our patients from COVID-19, including but not limited to:

  • We do not diagnose or treat COVID-19 patients on-site.
  • If you have an on-site appointment and are ill with fever, cough, shortness of breath or other COVID-19 symptoms, please call us immediately to reschedule (360-413-8250).
  • We do not allow anyone with a positive COVID-19 screen to remain on-site.
  • We encourage persons accompanying patients to wait in the car and/or use multiple lobby areas to facilitate social distancing.
  • We require face masks for all staff and providers and face masks/facial covering (nose and mouth) for every person on-site.
  • We offer telehealth visits as an alternative to on-site visits.
  • We have plexiglass barriers in place at all check-in/check-out desks.
  • We provide hand sanitizer in multiple locations and encourage their use as well as adhering to strict handwashing/hand hygiene guidelines by our staff and providers.
  • Our water fountains are turned off.
  • We monitor CDC, national GI tri-Societies (ACG, AGA, ASGE) and local and WA State public health department recommendations and adjust our protocols accordingly.
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Risks of Venturing Out in Public:

  • Some studies suggest that COVID-19 may be spread by people who do not have symptoms.
  • We understand weighing the benefits and risks of attending an in-person appointment with COVID prevalent in the community may be difficult. Each individual comes to us with a unique health history, chronic health conditions, new or chronic symptoms and/or the potential for silent health conditions (such as undiagnosed colon polyps, Barrett’s esophagus or cancer). Some chronic health conditions increase the risk of COVID-19 complications should an individual contract COVID-19.
  • Weighing the risks of COVID-19 complications versus not treating GI health concerns is something that should be reviewed and considered on an individual basis. While choosing to be seen in person for an appointment or procedure which is non-emergent has risks, as the pandemic spans more time, the risks of the untreated health issue may outweigh the risk of the likelihood of COVID-19 complications for particular individuals. We are happy to help our established patients review your particular risks for an in person visit. Please contact us through our Patient Portal or at 360-413-8250 for assistance, if needed. If you are not an established patient at Gastroenterology Associates, please contact your primary care provider (or provider who knows your health history) to review your risks versus benefits.
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Other Resources:

 



Practice News

Provider updates:

After decades of serving the community in GI specialty care, Dr. Kathryne Wagner has retired from clinic practice, we wish her the very best in her retirement! 

Dr. Maria Kurtz has recently joined GA. Dr. Kurtz came to us after a career in gastroenterology in the military. She and her family have made Olympia their home and we are thrilled she chose GA as her next career phase as she continues to share her GI specialty knowledge and skills in caring for the local community.

GA has welcomed three new providers this past summer - Maddie Reed, ARNP, Ralph Pulido, ARNP and Ivona Evans, ARNP have joined our clinic and are actively scheduling new patients.



On hold wait times: 

Due to the increased rate of upper respiratory illness in our local community and our strict policies about staff staying home when they have symptoms, we occasionally have fewer staff than we'd like answering phones.  Periodically this may create long phone hold times.  We apologize for any inconvenience this creates for you but our first priority is to keep our onsite patients safe and well.  If you have a long wait time on the phone, please stay on the line, we will answer your call as soon as we  can.  Thank you for your understanding .  

Thank you!

Physicians

  • Harpreet S. Brar, MD

    Dr. Brar began his GI career here in Olympia in 1999. He is well-known around the practice for his continual monitoring of all things newsworthy. This love of staying informed translates into Dr. Brar’s practice of medicine as he utilizes and shares the latest recommendations in evidence-based medicine with his patients, staff and peers.

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  • Mark D. Cumings, MD

    Dr. Cumings is a retired United States Army Colonel and was Gastroenterology Services Chief at Madigan Army Medical Center before retiring from military service and joining our practice in 2015. His GI career began in 2002 and has taken him all over the world. Dr. Cumings enjoys spending much of his time off boating, fishing and shrimping on local waters.

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  • Rodney W. Joe, MD

    Dr. Joe’s GI career started here in Olympia in 1997. He recently completed an MS in Healthcare Administration from University of Washington to expand his knowledge in healthcare management. Dr. Joe is well known for his easy-going style, including no neck ties from Memorial Day to Labor Day. He also facilitated a collaboration between GA and Harley-Davidson for a very popular “check your tailpipe” Colon Cancer Awareness month campaign.

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  • Lucas R. Leonard, MD

    Dr. Leonard began his GI practice in Fort Campbell, Kentucky, in 2014 and transferred to Madigan Army Medical Center in 2017, beginning weekend work with GA at the same time. Dr. Leonard retired from military service in December 2019 and we are thrilled to have him onboard at GA full time.

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  • Maria T. Kurtz, DO

    Dr. Kurtz joins GA in 2022 after completing her service as a military physician in the United States Army. Her GI career began in Fort Lewis, WA in 2019. After a lifetime of traveling and living in various parts of the world as a military child and then as a service member herself, she is thrilled to call the Pacific Northwest her permanent home. She enjoys traveling and spending time with family and friends.

  • Benjamin F. Merrifield, MD

    Dr. Merrifield began his GI career with GA in Olympia in 2005. Now he provides hospital coverage for GA a portion of each month. He also is a medical device inventor and is typically juggling several entrepreneurial projects at once.

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  • David J. Owens, MD

    Dr. Owens started his GI career in his hometown, Olympia, in 2009 after completing an additional year of GI fellowship to specialize in advanced GI technologies. Since then he has provided specialized advanced procedure services, such as Endoscopic Ultrasound, to our community.

    Learn More

  • Kathryne A. Wagner, MD

    Dr. Wagner began her GI career in Olympia in 1992 after returning to her PNW home from Syracuse, New York. Dr. Wagner believes in a maintaining a green, healthy and active lifestyle. She can frequently be found enjoying raw vegetables and has successfully completed the Seattle-to-Portland bike ride in one day!

    Learn More

  • Nicholas K. Weber, MD

    Dr. Weber began his GI career in the south Puget Sound region in 2014, joining GA in 2017. He fits right in to the GA team with his intense focus on providing the highest quality, compassionate care to his patients.

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  • Meimin Xie, MD

    Dr. Xie (pronounced “see ya”) completed her medical degree after earning an MS in Molecular Biology from Iowa State University. She began her GI career here in Olympia in 2007. Dr. Xie is an active bicyclist and reminds us to share the road!

    Learn More

  • Kristine Y. Zhang, MD

    Dr. Zhang left her Midwest roots to start her GI career here in Olympia in 2008. She, along with many of our physicians, balances a busy family life with her calling to be a physician.

    Learn More

Advanced Practice Clinicians

  • Teresa P. Abernathy
    ARNP
    • Board Certified by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)
    • Education: Washington State University Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), following a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Arizona State University.
  • Ivona Evans, ARNP
    • Board Certified by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)
    • Education: Case Western Reserve University – Frances Payne Bolton, Master of Science degree in Nursing (MSN), Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, following a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology from Case Western Reserve University – Frances Payne Bolton.
  • Stephanie F. Mitchell, ARNP
    • Board Certified by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)
    • Education: Regis College, Master of Science degree in Nursing (MSN), Family Nurse Practitioner, following a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from the University of Portland
  • Victoria M. Moore, PA-C
    • Board Certified by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA)
    • Education: University of Washington MEDEX Northwest Physician Assistant Program following a Bachelor of Science degree in Clinical Science from San Francisco State University
  • Ralph Pulido, ARNP
    • Board Certified by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)
    • Education: Western University of Health Sciences, Master of Science degree in Nursing (MSN), Family Nurse Practitioner, following a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Pacific Lutheran University.
  • Maddie Reed, ARNP
    • Board Certified by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)
    • Education: Gonzaga University, Master of Science degree in Nursing (MSN), Family Nurse Practitioner, following a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing from Gonzaga University.
  • Stephanie A. Romine, ARNP
    • Board Certified by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)
    • Education: Seattle University, Master of Science Degree in Nursing (MSN), Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner
  • Kimberly J. Thomas, ARNP
    • Board Certified by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)
    • Education: University of New Hampshire, Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Janelisa K. Williams, PA-C
    • Board Certified by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA)
    • Education: University of Washington MEDEX NW Physician Assistant Program following a Bachelor of Science degree in Microbiology from the University of Washington

Our Location

Find us on the map

Hours of Operation

Our Regular Schedule

Map and Location

Monday:

7:30 am-5:00 pm

Tuesday:

7:30 am-5:00 pm

Wednesday:

7:30 am-5:00 pm

Thursday:

7:30 am-5:00 pm

Friday:

7:30 am-5:00 pm

Saturday:

Closed

Sunday:

Closed

GA Endoscopy Center

Hours of Operation

Our Regular Schedule

Map and Location

Monday:

6:45 am-5:15 pm

Tuesday:

6:45 am-5:15 pm

Wednesday:

6:45 am-5:15 pm

Thursday:

6:45 am-5:15 pm

Friday:

6:45 am-5:15 pm

Saturday:

Closed

Sunday:

Closed

Providence St. Peter Hospital Endoscopy Center