Johnston Health Announces Names of Potential Partners
April 27, 2012
SMITHFIELD - The Johnston Health Board of Commissioners on Thursday named the five health care organizations-three of them based in the Triangle-that are interested in pursuing a joint partnership with the local health care system.
WakeMed, Duke, Rex/UNC Health Care, Vidant Health (formerly University Health Systems) and QHR (Quorum Health Resources) have all accepted the RFP, or request for proposal, sent to them this week by Johnston Health. The organizations have until late May to respond.
"We're pleased with the quality of these organizations," said Ralph Stewart, chairman of the Johnston Health board. "We have many positive things happening here, and I think it speaks well that so many people want to be a part of us."
A committee will evaluate the proposals, and then present their opinions to the board in June. Ensuing negotiations may take as long as six months, Stewart says. The board has said it's seeking an affiliation as a way to prepare for changes in the health care industry and to position the health care system for future growth. A joint partnership agreement would allow the board to retain a majority voice in decision making.
According to a summary of the RFP, the five organizations are being asked to address several items: governance, capital contributions, terms of a management agreement, the process for budgeting and strategic planning, proposed additions in clinical services, physician recruitment, positioning in response to the Affordable Care Act, proposed cost savings, a plan for the electronic health record.
Also, they're being asked what impact a partnership may have on patient referrals and the clinical affiliations now in place at Johnston Health. And they're being asked to propose a time frame for transition once negotiations are completed. Earlier this month, Stewart and Chuck Elliott, president and CEO of Johnston Health, held meetings to gather input from stakeholders, including employees, members of the medical staff, and community and elected leaders from across the county.
Elliott said comments about the search for an affiliation were generally supportive. "I think people understand what we're doing and why. They wanted to make sure that we continue to provide excellent care to the people in Johnston County," he said. "And we will."
About Johnston Health
Johnston Health is the county's health care system. It includes Johnston Medical Center-Smithfield, a 179-bed acute care hospital, and Johnston Medical Center-Clayton, an outpatient campus that includes a freestanding emergency department, same-day surgery and diagnostic imaging departments. Johnston Health also has primary care practices in Clayton and Kenly and an urgent care in Smithfield.