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Central Georgia Health System and Tift Regional Medical Center Form an Alliance

Central Georgia Health System and Tift Regional Medical Center Form an Alliance

To Advance Services that Support Regional Care Coordination and Delivery 

MACON, Ga. (Thursday, April 19, 2012) – Central Georgia Health System (CGHS) of Macon and Tift Regional Medical Center (TRMC) of Tifton have announced an agreement to create a “Regional Care Integrated Services Network” through the development of coordinated information systems as well as clinical and business services. Both organizations will remain independent, but will work together as equal partners and owners in a formalized affiliation that CGHS and TRMC leaders say will enhance the level of medical service delivery in the region and position both systems for the challenges of health care reform. 

“The primary goal of the collaboration between the organizations is to improve the value of health care for patients, employers and payors through support, planning and coordination of care delivery across physicians, hospitals and health systems, and medical schools in the region,” CGHS CEO and President Don Faulk said.

TRMC CEO and President William T. Richardson said both organizations over the past year came to the conclusion that they shared a common culture and vision for the future.

“Each organization wishes to remain independent, but recognized an opportunity to work collaboratively to ensure our vitality in this time of rapid change in health care,” Richardson said.

According to Faulk and Richardson, the future pressures of transitioning to a new health care model will strain the region’s smaller scale providers who will not be able to invest at the level of competitive facilities for information technology and care delivery required to be successful in a “fee-for-value” reimbursement world.  

“Both organizations have recently acquired and/or are acquiring smaller providers that need to affiliate with larger organizations given the business imperatives of the new model of health care,” Faulk said.

Richardson added that there are a number of providers within the region, both hospital and physician, that want to preserve their autonomy, but lack the financial and human capital to do so in the future. Such providers will have the opportunity to affiliate with the CGHS/TRMC partnership, take advantage of a shared-services model, and have continued independence.

“The centerpiece of the CGHS/TRMC alliance is a collaborative effort on computer technology, which will allow for the timely exchange of patient information that will improve outcomes and prevent duplication or over-utilization of health care services,” Richardson said.

Another advanced initiative that is being considered for joint development is a regional Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH). A PCMH is a progressive health care setting that coordinates providers to meet a patient’s medical needs, including prevention and wellness, acute care and chronic care over a large geographic area. CGHS and TRMC both see this extending from Macon to Tifton and beyond.

The two organizations are currently working to bring the initial service offerings of the collaboration to the market. The current development efforts are focused on computer technology from a clinical, business and customer service standpoint and shared services ranging from clinical support services (i.e., hospitalists, primary care/specialist network, advanced care models, etc.) to medical education through the relationship with Mercer University to hospital/practice management services (i.e., human resources, financial services, etc.). 


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