October 15, 2014
McCullough-Hyde Memorial Hospital and TriHealth have entered into a formal, non-binding letter of intent (LOI) to affiliate, following a vote by the McCullough-Hyde Board of Directors Tuesday evening. TriHealth's Board had previously voted to approve the LOI.
The two organizations will spend the remainder of this year in a joint planning effort to finalize the details of the affiliation and hope to complete the affiliation by Jan. 1, 2015.
"For two years now, our Board has worked hard to find the right path for our hospital in this time of unprecedented change in the healthcare industry," said Richard Norman, chairman of the McCullough-Hyde Memorial Hospital Board of Directors. "We strongly believe an affiliation with TriHealth is that path. It will not only strengthen us in the face of healthcare reform, but also ensure the Oxford community will have quality healthcare for years to come."
"The exploration of this affiliation has been of interest to our organization for some time, and we are thrilled to partner with McCullough-Hyde Memorial Hospital," said John Prout, TriHealth president and CEO. "Over the years we had spoken with McCullough-Hyde and had preliminary discussions of working together to improve healthcare for our communities. TriHealth brings a strong legacy in not-for-profit, community-based care to this partnership. Today is a great day for TriHealth."
Upon completion of the definitive agreements, the affiliation will represent a significant commitment by TriHealth, including:
- A $17 million commitment to the hospital that includes:
- A $9.5 million state-of-the-art information technology system, Epic;
- $3.5 million to expand and improve clinical services;
- $2.5 million toward the capital campaign for a new and expanded emergency department;
- An immediate $1 million capital investment; and
- A $500,000 contribution over three years to support community health programs;
- A very meaningful commitment to growing the medical staff and access to a robust clinically integrated network that will allow a better opportunity to coordinate care for patients; and
- Continuation of current services offered at the hospital today, including a full range of women's services.
As part of the affiliation, McCullough-Hyde, which will remain a not-for-profit, tax-exempt organization, will continue to have important local input on governance and strategic decisions. TriHealth will have 60 percent membership interest in the hospital, while the McCullough-Hyde Memorial Hospital Trust will retain 40 percent membership interest, and the Board composition will reflect this structure.
"TriHealth has an excellent reputation for clinical expertise and a prestigious track record of quality care," said Bryan Hehemann, CEO of McCullough-Hyde. "We are excited to be forming an affiliation to jointly operate our great community hospital. With its significant expertise, regional footprint, and financial and clinical resources, TriHealth will make McCullough-Hyde stronger as we continue to provide full-service, local healthcare to our community. Our team looks forward to working with TriHealth."
All contributions to the McCullough-Hyde Trust - past, present and future - will remain for the exclusive benefit of McCullough-Hyde Memorial Hospital. Norman added, "I'm especially appreciative of the support of the Trust by community donors and look forward to their continued support."
In addition, the hospital's name, not-for-profit mission and commitment to charity care will not change. There are no anticipated changes to senior management of McCullough-Hyde.
Due to healthcare reform and other industry drivers, community hospitals nationwide are finding it increasingly difficult to serve patients well while remaining independent. They face challenges such as declining payments, decreasing patient volumes, demand for significant investment in information technology and an emphasis on keeping large groups of patients well and out of the hospital.
"By pursuing an affiliation with a larger health system in our region, we are being proactive and shaping a stronger health system for the communities we serve in southwestern Ohio and eastern Indiana," Norman said. "The McCullough-Hyde Board thanks our patients, physicians, team members, donors, volunteers - and especially the community - for their patience and support as we move through this important process."
More information and regular updates will be available at mhmh.org/affiliation.