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Hospitals Announce Plans for Closer Clinical Collaboration

For release: 2/23/2011

 (Franklin)-Johnson Memorial Hospital, Franklin, and Community Health Network, based in Indianapolis, are pleased to announce they have agreed to create a closer clinical collaboration between the two healthcare organizations.

The clinical collaboration agreement will establish a new business relationship between JMH and Community, which includes five Central Indiana hospitals.  This collaboration is designed to expand their combined ability to jointly develop new clinical services and facilities in the future in Johnson County.

Historically JMH has operated with multiple collaborative agreements with Indianapolis-based health systems. In response to a changing healthcare environment, however, the hospital determined a different approach was needed going forward.

As clinical partners, JMH and Community will develop a shared set of goals and strategies, with the goal of increasing access to healthcare for residents of Johnson County and increasing the level of specialized care available at the JMH campus and at other locations in Johnson County that will be jointly developed in the future.

JMH President and CEO Larry Heydon stressed that the agreement does not affect the ownership, management or governance of the county-owned hospital.

“JMH is a financially strong and vibrant hospital that maintains a focus on expanding access to health care services for all residents of Johnson County,” he said. “This collaboration will further strengthen our role as a county-owned hospital and as a community asset to the people of Johnson County. The guidance and direction of the hospital will remain in the hands of the hospital’s board of trustees, medical staff and leadership team.”                    

Heydon added, “The new relationship with Community Health Network will allow us to join forces to jointly develop programs, services and facilities that will benefit the future health care needs of Johnson County.”

For the last several months the leadership at JMH has been evaluating clinical collaboration proposals from Community Health Network, St. Francis Hospital and IU Health.  The hospital’s administrative team and medical staff leadership recommended the selection of Community to the hospital’s board of trustees. The board approved that recommendation, clearing the way for the development of a final agreement.

Community Health Network President and CEO Bryan Mills called the new clinical collaboration a unique approach to developing a higher level of cooperation between JMH and Community.

 “We are delighted to expand our partnership with the medical staff and leadership of Johnson Memorial Hospital,” said Mills.  “Together, we can expand access to healthcare services in Johnson County and further our mission to enhance the health and well-being of the communities we serve.”

Heydon added, “The selection was very difficult. All three organizations made compelling presentations and any of them would have been excellent clinical partners for us in the future. In the end, we felt Community Health Network provided the best overall fit with JMH and our strategy for the future.”

A primary focus of the collaboration in the first year will be further development of cardiovascular services at JMH. Diagnostic cardiac catheterizations were initiated in 2008 in partnership with Community Health Network and its cardiology group, Community Heart and Vascular Physicians.

In the future that program will be expanded and further enhanced to include a broader range of cardiovascular services, interventional radiology and vascular surgery. Clinics will also be developed to address a variety of cardiovascular illnesses as well.

Also on the list for future review is the joint development of outpatient facilities that will bring healthcare services closer and make them more convenient for residents.

Both organizations will spend the rest of the year working through the transition to a closer, more complete relationship in developing and managing clinical services.  It is hoped the intent of the collaboration will be in full operation by year’s end.

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Lynda de Widt
Media Relations
Community Health Network
317-621-3636
E-mail

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