The Board of Trustees of Lucas County Health Center has approved a new affiliation with UnityPoint Health – Des Moines, a senior affiliate of UnityPoint Health.
Lucas County Health Center’s affiliation with UnityPoint Health – Des Moines will be effective September 1, 2015. The agreement with UnityPoint Health – Des Moines provides hospital management and consultation services and also includes the necessary affiliation services for Lucas County Health Center to meet the requirements to maintain its status as a rural Critical Access Hospital.
A key provision to the management agreement is that the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) will be employed by UnityPoint Health – Des Moines. At this time interviews are being conducted to fill this position.
“The Lucas County Health Center Board of Trustees spent considerable time evaluating its operations and management in light of changing local, state and national health care environment,” said Natalie McGee, Chairperson, Lucas County Health Center Board of Trustees. “We believe an affiliation with UnityPoint Health – Des Moines is the right thing to do for the community and the people we serve.”
Lucas County Health Center will remain locally governed, but its affiliation with UnityPoint Health – Des Moines will make Lucas County Health Center a vital member of Iowa’s largest health care provider network.
“We are honored to have the opportunity to partner with Lucas County Health Center,” said Eric Crowell, president and CEO of UnityPoint Health – Des Moines. “We are looking forward to working together to find new ways and opportunities to improve medical care for the citizens of Lucas County and surrounding communities.”
UnityPoint Health successfully operates a decentralized governance model with emphasis on physician-driven, patient-centric care. This model allows its affiliates to maintain local autonomy in significant areas where local control provides the highest quality, most cost-effective service to patients and their families. “This affiliation agreement allows Lucas County Health Center access to a number of services and resources at UnityPoint Health – Des Moines, but it is up to Lucas County Health Center to determine which of these services and resources it will utilize,” McGee said. “Management support and other shared services will move to UnityPoint Health – Des Moines, and this realignment will largely be unseen by both the community and many of the employees of Lucas County Health Center. Over time, the citizens of Lucas County will see important changes in care delivery that will assure patients are receiving high quality and valued local health care services.”