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A Year of Growth and Transformation For Windham Hospital

January 16, 2014

The creation of a true regional health care delivery system, a historic alliance with Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and the opening of the Windham Hospital Family Health Center and the Center for Women’s Health in Hebron were named as highlights of Fiscal Year 2013 during Windham Hospital’s annual meeting of its’ Board of Corporators held at the hospital on Thursday, January 16.

Hospital President and CEO David Whitehead said, despite a number of challenges and historic changes in the healthcare industry, 2013 was a year of transformation and growth for Windham Hospital. Whitehead said one of the biggest milestones in the past fiscal year was the creation of the new Hartford HealthCare East Region, which includes Windham and Backus hospitals and a variety of integrated services. This regional health care delivery model will be designed by a strategic planning process that is currently underway.

“Windham is playing a vital role in creating something that had not existed before – a true system of coordinated care. That is the vision of Hartford Healthcare; the vision of our East Region; and the vision of Windham,” said Whitehead. “This collaboration will result in a seamless system of personalized, coordinated care in Eastern Connecticut, a system that will create an experience for patients in which they receive the appropriate care, when and where they need it.”

Linda Klein, PhD., Chair of the Windham Hospital Board of Directors said the partnership with Backus hospital to form the East Region of Hartford HealthCare is a great opportunity to improve care for all residents.

“This plan is the first for the Hartford Healthcare System and will allow us to be proactive rather than reactive with future projects. This will allow us to be more competitive in responding to the national, state and local pressures as we move from a hospital based to an ambulatory system of care,” Klein said.

Also in 2013, Windham Hospital and the four other Hartford HealthCare acute care hospitals announced the formation of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Alliance—a transformative initiative to improve the quality of cancer care and the lives of cancer patients. This distinctive clinical and research partnership is built to rapidly move innovative, evidence-based cancer care into the community setting and enable bi-directional learning across the institutions.

In addition, the hospital opened the Windham Hospital Family Health Center and the Center for Women’s Health in Hebron in 2013. The first floor of the 30-thousand square foot Family Health Center opened in May with the addition of Hartford HealthCare Medical Group primary care services, general surgeons and Clinical Laboratory Partners (CLP). In early summer 2013, the Connecticut Hand Surgery Center and the Windham Hospital Rehabilitation Network moved into the second floor of the facility. Oncology Associates and the Lester E. and Phyllis M. Foster Oncology and Infusion Center will open in 2014. The Center for Women’s Health in Hebron open in April 2013 and offers OB/GYN, Diagnostic Imaging and lab services.

“All of the hospital’s expansion efforts exemplify Hartford HealthCare’s dedication to providing patients with an exceptional, coordinated care experience close to home,” said Whitehead. “The centers serve as anchors of ambulatory care in eastern Connecticut and give residents direct access to world-class care right in their backyard.”

Whitehead pointed to industry trends in declining inpatient volumes and historic national changes in the healthcare delivery system as two factors that contributed to the hospital posting a $7.2-million loss in FY2013.

“There is a fundamental change being felt across the industry because of this new business model. We are repurposing the health care delivery system moving from a volume-based to a value based system.” Whitehead said. “We have a great opportunity before us and we have the tools in place to build a sustainable model of care utilizing the resources from Windham and Backus hospitals to advance clinical services to the people of eastern Connecticut.”

Windham Hospital 2013 Annual report can be found at windhamhospital.org.