TRMC forms alliance with Central Georgia Health System|
(Tifton, Ga., April 19, 2012) – Tift Regional Medical Center (TRMC) of Tifton and Central Georgia Health System (CGHS) of Macon have announced an agreement to create a “Regional Care Integrated Services Network” through the development of coordinated information systems as well as clinical and business services. Both organizations will remain independent, but will work together as equal partners and owners in a formalized affiliation that TRMC and CGHS leaders say will enhance the level of medical service delivery in the region and position both systems for the challenges of health care reform.
TRMC CEO and President William T. Richardson said both organizations over the past year came to the conclusion that they shared a common culture and vision for the future. “Each organization wishes to remain independent, but recognized an opportunity to work collaboratively to ensure our vitality in this time of rapid change in health care,” Richardson said, noting that the TRMC-CGHS alliance will allow for the sharing of resources, both human and capital.
“The primary goal of the collaboration between the organizations is to improve the value of health care for patients, employers and payors through support, planning and coordination of care delivery across physicians, hospitals and health systems, and medical schools in the region,” CGHS CEO and President Don Faulk said.
According to Faulk and Richardson, the future pressures of transitioning to a new health care model will strain the region’s smaller scale providers who will not be able to invest at the level of competitive facilities for information technology and care delivery required to be successful in a “fee-for-value” reimbursement world.
“Both organizations have recently acquired and/or are acquiring smaller providers that need to affiliate with larger organizations given the business imperatives of the new model of health care,” Faulk said.
Richardson added that there are a number of providers within the region, both hospital and physician, that want to preserve their autonomy, but lack the financial and human capital to do so in the future. Such providers will have the opportunity to affiliate with the CGHS/TRMC partnership, take advantage of a shared-services model, and have continued independence.
“The centerpiece of the CGHS/TRMC alliance is a collaborative effort on computer technology, which will allow for the timely exchange of patient information that will improve outcomes and prevent duplication or over-utilization of health care services,” said Richardson.
Another advanced initiative that is being considered for joint development is a regional Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH). A PCMH is a progressive health care setting that coordinates providers to meet a patient’s medical needs, including prevention and wellness, acute care and chronic care over a large geographic area. CGHS and TRMC both see this extending from Macon to Tifton and beyond.
The two organizations are currently working to bring the initial service offerings of the collaboration to the market. The current development efforts are focused on computer technology from a clinical, business and customer service standpoint and shared services ranging from clinical support services (i.e., hospitalists, primary care/specialist network, advanced care models, etc.) to medical education through the relationship with Mercer University to hospital/practice management services (i.e., human resources, financial services, etc.).
Based in Macon, Central Georgia Health System (CGHS) is a nonprofit corporation whose primary purpose is to coordinate The Medical Center of Central Georgia (MCCG) and other affiliated entities in the central and south Georgia community. Currently, these other entities include Medcen Community Health Foundation, Central Georgia Rehabilitation Hospital, Central Georgia Home Care Services, Health Services of Central Georgia, and Carlyle Place. For more information, visit www.mccg.org.
Located in Tifton, Tift Regional Medical Center (TRMC) is a regional referral hospital serving 12 counties in south central Georgia. TRMC includes its Main Campus and West Campus locations in Tifton and numerous satellite clinics within the hospital’s service area. TRMC also recently announced an agreement to acquire Memorial Hospital of Adel and Memorial Convalescent Home in Cook County. To learn more, visit www.tiftregional.com.