UR Medicine and Jones Memorial Hospital Explore Formal Affiliation

December 18, 2014

Jones Memorial Hospital

UR Medicine and Jones Memorial Hospital in Wellsville announced today that they are considering a formal affiliation.  Leaders from both organizations emphasize that talks are still preliminary and a decision to affiliate is still months away, but say that a closer relationship could allow the organizations to work together in more efficient ways that would help them strengthen services to the Southern Tier.

The institutions currently collaborate to bring UR Medicine specialists such as cardiologists, neurologists, and otolaryngologists to Jones, giving local patients access to specialized care close to home.  A formal affiliation would add Jones to UR Medicine’s hospital network, alongside Strong Memorial, Highland, and Thompson Health.  In September, UR Medicine announced that it is in similar affiliation discussions with Noyes Health in Dansville.

Representatives from UR Medicine and Jones have been meeting for several weeks to explore the potential benefits of such an affiliation.  The systems are trying to determine whether an affiliation could maximize the capabilities and resources of both systems, better preparing them amid shrinking reimbursement and other changes that are being driven by the Affordable Care Act.  It is expected to take several months before each side will be able to make a recommendation to their respective Boards and seek necessary regulatory approvals. 

“By working together, the team at Jones Memorial -- which includes not only our highly-qualified medical staff and employees, but our loyal volunteers and supportive community -- has earned Jones Memorial national and regional recognition for the quality of care we provide our patients every day,” said Eva Benedict, CEO of Jones Memorial Hospital.  “As the health care environment continues to rapidly evolve, we recognize the importance of having a strategy that allows us to continue improving health outcomes for our communities.  We believe that UR Medicine’s affiliation model could help us achieve these goals.“

“Through our relationship with Jones Memorial, UR Medicine already has a strong presence in the Wellsville area, so it makes sense to consider ways to make it work even better,” said UR Medicine CEO-designate Mark Taubman, M.D.   “A formal affiliation could allow us to work more systematically with Jones, its medical staff and the community to identify local needs and services that should be expanded.” 

Across the country, health systems are forging relationships that can help them drive down costs and improve quality.  As payments to hospitals shrink and the cost of technology skyrockets, it’s becoming even more cost-effective for community hospitals to work with academic medical centers to develop new approaches to delivering specialty care.   

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Christopher DiFrancesco
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