Westside Health Services Joins With Strong Health

June 26, 2000

A newly announced partnership between Westside Health Services and Strong Health will improve care management and access to specialty health care services for inner city residents, says Westside executive director Gerald Giudici.

The partnership extends a longstanding teaching affiliation in which residents in Highland Hospital's Family Medicine program' urban track have rotated through Westside locations for outpatient training. In fact, most of Westside's team of 8 physicians are graduates of the Family Medicine program.

"This affiliation represents a natural extension of the longstanding relationships that our physicians and patients have had with Strong Health hospitals," Giudici said. "Most of our patients already are accustomed to using Strong's emergency services and can now look forward to Highland's inpatient care and even better access to the specialty services at Strong."

"This partnership with Westside demonstrates Strong Health's commitment to all of Rochester's residents," said Michael J. Weidner, Strong Health vice president for Primary Care. "We are especially excited to be able to work with Westside to support Medicaid managed care. Already, Strong Health care managers are working with staff at Westside to manage their patients' care and to streamline referrals to specialty care."

Weidner points out that Strong Health's affiliations with other federally funded community health centers - the Anthony Jordan Health Center and Oak Orchard Health Center - put Strong Health in a position to advocate for and build a common infrastructure that will ensure continuity and improve efficiency. According to Weidner, the Medical Center is also considering ways to partner with the community health centers to bring more preventive care to at-risk populations.

Westside Health Services is a federally funded community health program with locations that include the Woodward Health Center on Genesee Street and the Brown Square Health Center on Lyell Avenue. Founded in the mid-1970's as part of Rochester Health Network, Westside primarily serves Rochester's southwestern quadrant. Its staff currently sees about 48,000 medical and dental visits per year.

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