On February 22, 2012 Prime Healthcare - the new owners of Roxborough Memorial Hospital - set out to recover a 120-year old facility that had been neglected for more than a decade. One year later the parking lots are paved and lighted, the roofs have been repaired, the hallways are painted, the floors are shining, the staffing has been enhanced, new beds, monitors, and furniture have been installed, new computers have been purchased, and new equipment exists in the surgical suites and imaging department. But most importantly, patient satisfaction has moved from below the 50th percentile when compared nationally to more than the 75th percentile and nearly every quality metric is on par with the best run hospitals in the United States. If you think this is where it will end, think again. The hospital plans to open 12 additional Geriatric / Psychiatric beds, begin construction on an emergency room expansion that nearly doubles capacity, and the entire campus is now WIFI accessible including patient rooms.
According to CEO, Peter Adamo, "When we arrived we knew that we had a lot of hard work ahead of us to restore the luster of the hospital. But we also knew that with such an enthusiastic and dedicated staff we had a winning formula." With the help of a very skillful transition team that has honed its talent over the past 18 acquisitions, Roxborough Memorial Hospital eliminated its multi-million dollar deficit position in just eight months and invested more money on repairs than the hospital has spent in nearly a decade.
Today, the hospital is clean, it's properly staffed, its outcome data rivals that of major academic institutions, and all its bills are paid on time. The next step is modernizing the power plant and air handling systems of the main building, the school of nursing, and the adjoining medical office building. Later this year the hospital will further its commitment to improving the health of the community by becoming a totally smoke-free campus on Independence Day – July 4th. Now that many of the internal systems are working, the hospital can afford to dedicate some if its energy to the neighborhood. In addition to all the donations made by its employees to needy families during the holidays, this year the hospital will be pursuing a stroke certification by The Joint Commission and will be participating in numerous community activities such as the Susan B. Komen Race for the Cure and the Alzheimer's Walk.
While the hospital is still in discussion with Aetna over the fairness of the rates that have been offered, Aetna patients can continue to seek emergency services without any financial hardship at Roxborough Memorial Hospital and in certain cases may even be able to schedule elective procedures while experiencing the same out-of-pocket expenses as an in-network member.
All of this change can be attributed to getting back to the basics. When a community hospital understands its limits, overlays national pricing advantages, right-sizes its staffing, and works closely with its doctors to improve quality, it is possible to make a modest return – even in the most challenging of circumstances. This is what Prime Healthcare is doing at its 21 hospitals across the United States and is living up to its commitment of Saving Hospitals, Saving Jobs, and Saving Lives.
Thanks to everyone in Roxborough for not giving up on their hospital!