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TO HEALTH, MEDICAL, AND NATIONAL EDITORS:
Tufts Medical Center, Lowell General Hospital announce formation of
new health care system
BOSTON, April 14, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Tufts Medical Center
and Lowell General Hospital today announced plans to form a new health
system. Designed as an alternative model, this new system will foster
collaboration between and among community-based and academic medical
providers to effectively identify patient needs and manage the health
of the communities they serve.
The organizations will align with a new parent company, led by Normand
Deschene as Chief Executive Officer and Ellen Zane as Chairperson.
Tufts MC, Lowell General and their physician groups will maintain
local governance but will partner to create the scale needed to
capitalize on population data management, efficiencies of group
purchasing and the development of innovative services while assuring
autonomy. The organizations will have equal representation on the
parent company board.
"We believe in keeping physicians close to patients and removing the
barriers that stand in the way of patients receiving care at the right
time in the most appropriate setting, conveniently and affordably,"
said Deschene, CEO of Lowell General Hospital. "This partnership with
Tufts Medical Center will do just that. The new system will allow us
to build and strengthen connections, remove obstacles and ultimately
ensure that patients are navigating a far less complex healthcare
The new system will unite organizations who share a demonstrated high
quality, lower-cost approach to health care services and an
established set of population health management practices and programs
- a crucial aspect of the Affordable Care Act environment.
"Our partnership will be the first of its kind in Massachusetts," said
Zane, Vice Chair of the Tufts MC Board of Trustees. "This system is
not being formed by one entity taking over another, with the academic
medical center as the hub of the universe. What we are creating is a
'round table,' if you will, predicated on our commitment to managing
the health and well-being of the communities we serve. This system we
are forming with Lowell General Hospital is powerful both on its own,
and as an alternative for other community providers and regional
physician groups who share our vision and values."
Lowell General Hospital and Tufts Medical Center have been recognized
repeatedly in reports from the Attorney General's Office and the
Center for Health Information and Analysis for their ability to
deliver high quality care with a lower cost structure, just the
formula that legislators, business leaders and patients have been
demanding to make care better and more affordable in Massachusetts.
"We know from experience that strong hospitals and physician groups
like ours seek the scale necessary to leverage collaborative
technologies and data sharing that allow us to improve access to
affordable, high quality health care for the communities we serve,"
said Deschene. "We believe the market is hungry for this type of
Tufts Medical Center CEO Michael Wagner, MD, said, "Lowell General is
a perfect teammate, one of the strongest and most well-respected
community hospital systems in Massachusetts. By joining together, we
can accelerate the development of services and technologies to help
patients across the spectrum from the healthy to the chronically ill
to the critically ill. As a CEO and a physician, I find the benefits
offered by this system unmatched and extremely attractive."
"We have seen the success of working with Tufts Medical Center and its
commitment to partnering with community hospitals firsthand through
our successful pediatric and critical care affiliations," said Joseph
White, President of Lowell General Hospital. "Ultimately, this
partnership will help us continue to deliver on our promise of
complete connected care to members of our community - no matter where
they access that care. Tufts Medical Center will bring its commitment
to research, teaching and specialty care innovation to this
partnership, and will help us to increase the breadth and scope of the
care we provide in the community."
The new system will leverage population health data and services
already available through the Lowell General Hospital and New England
Quality Care Alliance (NEQCA), a network of 1,800 physicians
affiliated with Tufts Medical Center. This will support a
cost-efficient and optimally effective approach to population health
management, a method by which hospitals, doctors and other health care
providers work together to improve patients' health rather than simply
treat episodes of disease. It is a critical component of health care
reform. NEQCA and Lowell General Hospital have had significant success
and are highly regarded for their innovations in this area.
"Physicians and hospitals are going to find this unique system
attractive in that it provides a level of local control and
collaboration between academic and community medicine that currently
does not exist," said Jeffrey Lasker, MD, President and CEO of NEQCA.
"This new model has been designed to support the relationship between
the doctor and patient and will allow us the opportunity to build on
our demonstrated success in ensuring healthier outcomes for patients
and limiting health care costs."
About Tufts Medical Center Tufts Medical Center is an exceptional,
not-for-profit, 415-bed academic medical center that is home to both a
full-service hospital for adults and Floating Hospital for Children.
Conveniently located in downtown Boston, the Medical Center is the
principal teaching hospital for Tufts University School of Medicine.
Floating Hospital for Children is the full-service children's hospital
of Tufts Medical Center and the principal pediatric teaching hospital
of Tufts University School of Medicine. Tufts Medical Center is
affiliated with the New England Quality Care Alliance, a network of
nearly 1,800 physicians throughout Eastern Massachusetts. For more
information, please visit www.tuftsmedicalcenter.org
About Lowell General Hospital Lowell General Hospital is an
independent, not-for-profit, community hospital serving the Greater
Lowell area and surrounding communities. With two primary campuses
located in Lowell, Massachusetts, the hospital offers the latest
state-of-the-art technology and a full range of medical and surgical
services for patients, from newborns to seniors.
About New England Quality Care Alliance (NEQCA) New England Quality
Care Alliance is a partnership of community and academic physicians
dedicated to providing comprehensive, innovative, high-quality and
affordable health care that brings value to their patients and the
community. NEQCA is comprised of almost 500 primary care physicians
and pediatricians along with more than 1,300 specialists, located in
practices across Eastern Massachusetts, from the Merrimack Valley to
Cape Cod. NEQCA physicians are organized into groups called Local
Care Organizations (LCOs), and are on staff at community hospitals
throughout Eastern Massachusetts. The NEQCA network is integrated
with Tufts Medical Center, the principal teaching hospital for Tufts
University School of Medicine and the Floating Hospital for Children,
the full-service children's hospital of Tufts Medical Center and the
principal pediatric teaching hospital of Tufts University School of
Medicine. For more information, please visit: www.neqca.org
SOURCE Tufts Medical Center
/CONTACT: Angela Strunk, Lowell General Hospital, 978-937-6425 email@example.com; or Julie Jette, Tufts Medical Center, 617-636-3265 firstname.lastname@example.org
/Web Site: http://www.tuftsmedicalcenter.org
CO: Tufts Medical Center
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