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Bankruptcy Court approves Westchester Medical Center
02/24/2014

CONTACT:  David Billig (WMC)     (914) 493 8028                                                   Jon Cohen (SFHHC)   (518-792-3856)


Bankruptcy Court approves Westchester Medical Center


Westchester Medical Center and Saint Francis Begin Working on “Our Next 100 Years”


 


Today, the United States Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York, approved Westchester Medical Center’s (WMC) purchase of the assets of Saint Francis Hospital and Health Centers (SFHHC), ushering in an era of unique cooperation, collaboration and momentum for the Poughkeepsie hospital and its programs.


"Westchester Medical Center’s historical mission has always been to ensure that Hudson Valley residents have access to the finest advanced medical care as close to home as possible, regardless of their ability to pay,” said Michael D. Israel, WMC President and CEO.  “Saint Francis has been a critical link to quality care for those living and working in the community and we believe that the organization’s future as a full-service community hospital is very bright indeed.”


“We say this speaking from a great depth and breadth of experience,” said Mark Tulis, Chair of the WMC Board of Directors.  “Nearly a decade ago, Westchester Medical Center was faced with a similar challenge.  Our current management team came in and oversaw a very successful turnaround and the Medical Center is now entering its ninth consecutive year with a positive bottom line.”


Tulis said that today WMC’s three health care facilities (415-bed University Hospital, 136-bed Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital and 101-bed Behavioral Health Center) are all operating near, at or above capacity and the Medical Center will have invested more than $200 million into our infrastructure, technology and physical plant in just four years. 


According to Dr. Samuel Simon, SFHHC Board Chair, “The only real way to save locally provided services and the core mission of Saint Francis Hospital is to keep them managed in the community on the existing campus.” 


In a letter to the community, Israel and SFHHC President and CEO Art Nizza wrote, “Our commitment is to keep a full-service community hospital open, enhancing and strengthening all of the fine services that exist including such critical services as behavioral health programs, addiction recovery services, a special needs preschool, and Level Two Trauma Center, as well as well-known core medical services like joint replacement and physical rehabilitation, the latest robotic surgery procedures and a comprehensive cancer program.  At the same time, we also plan to introduce additional advanced-care offerings locally to more patients in areas such as neurosciences, cardiovascular and critical care, including advanced technologies such as telemedicine.  And more healthcare services mean more jobs for the community.” 


“First and foremost, this partnership is a sign of our commitment to the mid-Hudson Valley and will allow us to ensure that everyone has access to the highest level of care, as close to home as possible,” Israel added.


“Saint Francis has had a long-standing tradition of excellence and we will continue to deliver the highest quality care in the region.  This partnership ensures that resources are available for us to grow,” Nizza said.  “We will be able to leverage economies of scale and share clinical best practices, providing more efficient delivery of services to patients in the mid-Hudson Valley.” 


The first step is the implementation of a management services agreement between Saint Francis and Westchester Medical Center.  When Implemented this agreement provides that Westchester Medical Center will work with Saint Francis Hospital to provide oversight and expertise to help stabilize and improve its finances and operations.   During this time period, the Saint Francis Board and management team remain in charge of the organization.  As of the transaction closing on or around May 9th, Westchester Medical Center will purchase the assets of Saint Francis. 


Nizza and Israel closed their letter by saying, “We’re excited about our new partnership.  We are also very thankful for the outpouring of support and enthusiasm we have received from the Saint Francis and Westchester Medical Center families and the community at large.  We respect the trust you are putting in us and over the coming weeks and months, we promise to communicate openly with you about our plans and progress.  We look forward to your continued encouragement as we work to strengthen the region’s healthcare for today and tomorrow.”  


About Westchester Medical Center  


Spanning every adult and pediatric medical specialty, Westchester Medical Center serves as a lifeline to the more than 3.5 million people in the Hudson Valley region and beyond.  Well-known for its advanced medical care in trauma and burn, heart, cancer, transplant, neuroscience and pediatrics, community hospitals within a 5,000-square-mile range send their most difficult cases to this advanced-care, academic medical center.  At Westchester Medical Center, each year more than 120,000 patients are cared for in every medical specialty through its University Hospital, the 136-bed Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital—home to the region’s only Level IV NICU and PICU—the Joel A. Halpern Regional Trauma Center and the region's only Burn Center and the only full-service 24/7 cardiac center, including heart transplant, Mechanical Circulatory Support and so much more.  With more than 900 attending physicians and 3,300 healthcare professionals, Westchester Medical Center is the only facility capable of providing immediate lifesaving advanced care between New York City and Albany.


About Saint Francis Hospital and Health Centers 


From our state-of-the-art Center for Robotic Surgery to our specialized Total Joint Rehabilitation Unit, Saint Francis is home to the latest healing techniques and technology in the Hudson Valley.  Advanced clinical protocols are seamlessly combined with mission driven compassionate care delivered by the area’s top healthcare team.  Operating the regions only Level 2 Trauma Center, Saint Francis is a destination hospital for patients with traumatic injuries that require care beyond what is routinely provided by their local community hospital.  Whether it’s a life-threatening injury or a few stitches, you can turn to the top-notch staff at our recently expanded Emergency Care Center for fast and efficient treatment.  The patient-centered Redl Center for Cancer Care offers people living with cancer and their families everything they need to receive care in one convenient and newly renovated location.  From prevention, to education and treatment, the physicians, health care staff, and volunteers at Saint Francis have a reputation as the region’s most innovative health care delivery system.  We are privileged to serve the Hudson Valley for our next 100 years! 


Visit www.ournext100years.com


 


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