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St. Joseph's Hospital Health Center

Advancing Excellence

Aug 18 2014
Access to Care
0

We are on vacation in a rural community. Recently we read in the local paper that the local health center is reducing hours to Monday through Friday, days. That means an hour drive in any direction for residents to get basic care. Likely it means delaying care or seeking care in the most costly setting, the Emergency Department, still an hour away.

What is open seven days until 10 p.m. is the local drug store. Hmmm, seems like an opportunity to think about access differently, from telemedicine, to clinical affiliates, to a mini urgent care. While not able to treat all issues, these settings certainly would help with many basic care needs.

It also becomes an economic development issue.  How can a community attract business, if the employer can't be assured of access to care for it's employees? What model can work in rural communities, and how can urban areas like Syracuse help support these communities?

That is exactly what we are doing in Lewis County. Helping a wonderful sole provider community hospital do the best job it can caring for the community and remaining an important employer.  We do this through assisting with recruitment, education, telemedicine and economic development.

When we talk about becoming a system of care, it means connecting beyond the walls of the acute care setting, to the communities where patients travel from and return to with their families. We are also working with regional providers to jointly develop a better system of care through the New York State waiver funds called the Delivery System Redesign Incentive Payment (DSRIP) program..

To learn more about those efforts visit Www.cnycares.org



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