Monday, January 10, 2011

Our opportunity with Upstate

Today's Post-Standard has a story about Community's financial condition, based on a recent report by Moody’s Investor Services.

The Moody's report considers the flat population in Central New York, Community's smallest market share, and the cost of competing in the four-hospital Syracuse market. Moody’s concludes, correctly, that it will be difficult for Community to invest properly in the hospital in the future.

These are among the factors the Board of Directors considered in 2009 when it decided that -- as a strategy to better serve patients and our community -- Community should become part of a larger hospital system. And in a somewhat public way, we have been seeking the right hospital partner ever since.

Our discussions with Crouse Hospital were announced in the fall, 2009. They did not work out, but our planning with Upstate is going well.

We have largely completed many of the legal and financial reviews (“due diligence” process) that are necessary, and we have been able to add to Community's medical staff a number of physicians from Upstate, even in advance of a formal combination. These are good signs of progress.

Community has a strong medical staff and workforce and an excellent physical plant. We operate on a 42-acre suburban site. Our patient services are strong. Today's newspaper notes that Community has "the lowest rate in inpatient complications of any hospital in the city." Last year, Consumer Reports acknowledged us for low infection rates. HealthGrades recently awarded us for the sixth straight year, its overall excellence award in New York State for orthopedics care. Yes, that's in New York State.

And . . .Community was recently re-accreditated by the Joint Commission.

These advantages bring value to Upstate as it meets its academic, clinical and research missions in the broader Central New York region.

Remember, there is an old saw about risk and opportunity. The Moody’s report identifies risk for Community. Community and Upstate see the opportunity in doing something important for our community.

1 comment:

Remarks blog said...

Well said. I look forward to this mutually beneficial merger.
Mark Re