Lee Memorial Health System Focuses on Community Growth and Changing Needs
This week, we shared with our employees, staff physicians and community exciting news about our expansion of Gulf Coast Medical Center, and our plans to transfer—over the next five years—some complex medical services from Lee Memorial Hospital to Gulf Coast Medical Center. We also discussed our plans to expand wellness, outpatient and chronic care management services at Lee Memorial Hospital.
It is important to stress that these modifications are years down the road. However, we believe it is essential that we begin a conversation now about how—and why—our system is evolving to provide for the future health care needs of our community.
One of the many ways we are evolving is through the expansion of Gulf Coast Medical Center, the transfer of some services from Lee Memorial Hospital to Gulf Coast Medical Center and the expansion of wellness, outpatient and chronic care management services at Lee Memorial Hospital. This decision reflects input from our employees and physicians, as well as changing demographics in our community and trends in the health care industry that are redefining how and where care is delivered. Ultimately, there are three main reasons we are planning these changes:
First, we have a responsibility to do what is best for our patients. Gulf Coast Medical Center is a newer, state-of-the-art facility that can better accommodate some complex services, which makes the most sense for high-tech patient care.
While Lee Memorial Hospital will always be a vital part of our system, it has some infrastructure limitation—such as ceiling height, room size, mechanical systems and land limitations, for example—that make it unable to accommodate some of the most advanced technology and equipment increasingly essential for complex medical services. It is important to note that a full-service Emergency Department and many other clinical services will continue to be available at Lee Memorial Hospital to serve our community.
Second, we have many ongoing efforts under way to transform all of Lee Memorial Health System for the future of health care so we can be the best we can be for our community. This decision is one of them. Given the dramatic changes under way in health care—both nationally and locally, we must be proactive to ensure we are best positioned to serve our communities now and in the future.
The next step in our planning for the future includes making strategic decisions on how to best align, structure and locate services across each of our campuses. That is why we are planning to transfer these complex services from Lee Memorial Hospital to Gulf Coast Medical Center, and why we are investing in wellness, outpatient and chronic care management services at Lee Memorial Hospital.
Finally, because we are a community-based health care organization, we must be stewards of resources. We are committed to spending resources as wisely as possible. In light of declining reimbursements, strengthening these services in a new, state-of-the-art facility is an appropriate use of resources.
Over the coming months and years, we will continue this conversation with the community about how Lee Memorial Health System will make sure we are the best we can be for our patients. We are committed to being caring people, caring for people, now and always; every day and night.
President, Lee Memorial Health System
Thank you for your support. Together we are caring people, caring for people.