INDIANAPOLIS – Two Indianapolis-based hospital systems announced plans to work together, forming a partnership to coordinate operations of their hospitals and health care facilities.
Officials from Community Health Network and Wishard-Eskenazi Health announced the partnership Monday, saying it would put both systems in the best possible position to deal with upcoming changes in health care and improve access to care for all patients.
A seven-member board will help govern that partnership. The board will include four members from Community and three from Wishard, which will soon become Eskenazi Health. Officials said the private-public partnership isn’t a merger or an acquisition. They characterized it as an ongoing effort to promote affordable care, especially for low-income patients.
The two hospital systems said they both have their own strengths, adding that the partnership made sense because they have little crossover in terms of specialties and services.
“Community is on the forefront of finding innovative ways to deliver the highest quality of patient care,” said Bryan Mills, president and CEO of Community Health Network. “We believe this agreement allows two extraordinary organizations to integrate shared missions and visions focused on providing exceptional care within an expanded geographical footprint.”
“Delivering the best and most accessible care for our patients, and particularly the indigent and underserved who will be seeking greater access to care within the environment of health care reform, is a challenge we embrace and one that our partnership addresses,” said Dr. Lisa Harris, CEO and medical director of Wishard-Eskenazi Health. “Working together, we can do more in the interest of the health and vitality of our community than either organization can do alone. Though the scope of this agreement is unprecedented, the principle of partnering and aligning resources to enhance care, medical education, research and health services is central to the cultures and values of both organizations.”
Mills will continue in his role as president and CEO of Community while taking on duties as CEO for the new partnership. Harris will continue to serve as CEO and medical director at Wishard-Eskenazi Health.
The partnership aligns management of all Central Indiana Community Health Network and Wishard-Eskenazi Health facilities as well as Community’s suburban hospitals. All locations will remain open, officials said, and some facilities will see upgrades and renovations as a result of the partnership.