This site has up-to-date information about MVHS for our employees, medical staff and volunteers. It will be updated frequently with changes regarding our hospitals and new system. I encourage you to leave comments on our posts and to use the contact form to voice concerns or ask any questions you may have. - Scott H. Perra, FACHE, President/CEO of MVHS
During the month of June we will be making changes to a limited number of services provided by the Mohawk Valley Health System (MVHS). We are consolidating the services to allow for greater efficiency in our delivery of care and to further develop our centers of excellence. The changes will benefit our patients and medical staffs and involve both Faxton St. Luke’s Healthcare (FSLH) and St. Elizabeth Medical Center (SEMC). They are:
- FSLH - Consolidate FSLH Telecommunications with the Service Response Center
- FSLH – Relocate all cardiac catheterizations and angioplasty procedures to SEMC
- SEMC – Consolidate SEMC and FSLH Central Scheduling to the Faxton Campus
- SEMC – Closure of 3B, a 15-bed medical/surgical nursing unit
The transitions for the different areas will be occurring on various dates throughout the month. We will keep you informed about the changes and when they will occur.
The 48 employees who are impacted by the changes have the opportunity to apply for other positions within the system. Our organization, like so many in our area, has a number of openings for all types of positions, especially nursing.
The staffing changes involve both union and non-union employees. For the union employees we will follow the language in their current Collective Bargaining Agreements for transferring and bumping based on seniority. To date we have not reached an agreement (Effects Bargaining) with the three unions who are represented at the two hospitals. An Effects Bargaining agreement would allow union members to transition more easily from one campus to another. The unions we are working with are New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA) and United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) – Local One, both at SEMC, and the Communications Workers of America (CWA) – Local 1126 at FSLH. We are hopeful that we can come to an agreement soon as it will benefit our employees who are impacted by these changes.
The consolidation of the cardiac program to SEMC will centralize the service and support greater quality and efficiency. New medications that support the early intervention of heart disease are making a difference for patients, which have caused both FSLH and SEMC to see a decline in the number of procedures at both labs.
This change will impact patients, medical staff and our community so we want to ensure that there is a greater awareness about where to go if you are experiencing a heart attack. Just like FSLH is the Regional Stroke Center, SEMC will build on its reputation as the Mohawk Valley Heart Institute and be the MVHS Center for Cardiac Care.
Whenever possible, we want to strengthen our clinical expertise, make the best use of our limited resources and ensure cost savings. Even though our financial performance is showing improvement, year to date through April we have experienced a $1.7 million loss for the system. These changes help us to enhance our centers of excellence as well as support quality care for our patients and their families.
I know this isn’t easy and I appreciate your support of our employees and medical staff as we reorganize the different services and work through these transitions.
Scott H. Perra, FACHE
Mohawk Valley Health System
Earlier this year, Governor Andrew Cuomo proposed $300 million in the 2015 New York State (NYS) budget to help to ‘create an integrated healthcare delivery system in Oneida County.’ His proposal was part of a $700 million recommendation to support Upstate New York hospitals. The proposal for Oneida County became a reality with the approval of the budget this week.
“This is an incredible opportunity for our community and we are extremely grateful to the Governor and our legislators,” commented Scott H. Perra, FACHE, president/CEO of the Mohawk Valley Health System (MVHS). “Last fall we began exploring the concept of a new, free-standing hospital. To be able to move forward with this concept changes healthcare in our community and enhances what we are able to do for the region.”
According to hospital officials, the Governor’s recommendation in early January was a most welcome surprise and was in addition to a proposal submitted in December under the Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment (DSRIP) Program. DSRIP is a federal and state initiative designed to improve and coordinate care for Medicaid recipients and those without insurance. The funding for the DSRIP project has not yet been announced.
Officials say building a new hospital is costly, estimated at $460 to $500 million. They note that the $300 million helps to lay the foundation for funding. MVHS would still need additional financial support from federal and state governments, lending institutions and philanthropic support from the community.
The new hospital would replace the inpatient care currently provided at the St. Luke’s Campus of Faxton St. Luke’s Healthcare (FSLH) and at St. Elizabeth Medical Center (SEMC). The project is estimated to take four to six years to complete and there are a number of steps that need to happen even before the first shovels are in the ground.
“One of the most frequently asked questions is ‘where would we build a new hospital?’ and we don’t know yet,”noted Perra. “We are working with Steve DiMeo and Mohawk Valley EDGE to look for potential sites in our area. EDGE has tremendous resources and their support is invaluable. It will take time, research and planning to determine the best location.”
The final determination for the site will be made by the Board of Directors of the MVHS. And officials caution that while many are interested in where the new hospital will be located– there is a long list of additional items that need to be decided. In the next 12 to 18 months a plan for the hospital, size, structure, location, services and staffing needs to be fully developed. Administration and the Board of Directors also need to work on a transition plan for the current FSLH and SEMC buildings and will work with the NYS Department of Health to complete a Certificate of Need (CON) application for the new project.
“This is the beginning of a long and important journey,” said Perra. “We are excited and we recognize what an enormous responsibility this is for our Board of Directors, medical staffs and employees. We only have one chance to get this right and that is what we intend to do. We want to build a new hospital for the families that we serve, one that will make a difference for generations to come.”
Mohawk Valley Health System is an affiliation of Faxton St. Luke’s Healthcare and St. Elizabeth Medical Center. The two organizations affiliated in March 2014.