WARNER ROBINS, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) - Two Middle Georgia hospitals announced they will start working together to cut costs and bring better healthcare to the area.
Hospital leaders for Houston Healthcare and the Medical Center of Central Georgia met on Tuesday to announce the collaboration between the two hospitals. They say this is a step in the right direction to improve healthcare services and give patients their best shot at treatment and recovery.
"We have to find new solutions to the new problems that all healthcare organizations are facing," Houston Healthcare CEO Cary Martin said.
Problems like the upcoming healthcare reform. Starting next year, everyone must have medical insurance which will mean busier hospitals. That is why Martin and MCCG president and CEO Dr. Ninfa Saunders created a partnership. Their goal is to work together to develop and strengthen programs both hospitals offer.
"This gives us an opportunity to, at times, pull resources, share in innovative solutions to improve patient care, improving patient quality of care, patient satisfaction," Martin said. "We can do so much more working together than we can do independently on our own."
The new alliance is not a merger. Instead, both hospitals will run independently. The collaboration also gives employees the chance to expand their medical and safety training by learning from each other as well as reduce the cost of healthcare.
"So that we have the right access to the right care at the right time at the right cost," Saunders said.
Currently, hospital leaders are working out the details of the programs. Saunders say this partnership will benefit both hospitals.
"We want to be able to look at each other's programs and say, 'What are we doing best, what are you doing well that we can do better, how can we learn from you?'" Saunders said.
And by emulating each other's best best practices, everyone, but most importantly the patients, come out as winners.
"We have to serve the patients and to the extent that we can serve them best, through our talent, our strategy and the way we execute the care and how we take care of our people, then we have done the right thing by doing that," Saunders said.
Hospital leaders also say this collaborative medical community will help Robins Air Force Base in case it goes through Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC). This is expected to be a long term relation. Both Martin and Saunders hope it will get stronger over time.