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Health Quest Announces Initiatives to Ensure High Quality Patient Care Despite Economy

Health Quest Announces Initiatives to Ensure High Quality Patient Care Despite Economy

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Published by Tony Adamis
Staffing reductions announced 09-18-12.
Staffing reductions announced 09-18-12.

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Published by: Tony Adamis on Sep 19, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASESeptember 18, 2012Contact:
David Ping, Sr. VP Business Development, Strategic Planning
Health Quest Announces Initiatives to EnsureHigh Quality Patient Care Despite Economy 
Details include expansion investment and cost restructure
Poughkeepsie, NY – September 18, 2012 –
Health Quest announced today a number of cost-saving and revenue enhancement initiatives designed to ensure the system will be able to continueto provide the highest quality of care and service to its patients.Like many healthcare systems across the state and nation, Health Quest has seen a decrease inadmissions as patients delay all but the most emergent medical issues due to the tough economicsituation, lack of employment or fear of missing work. In addition, bad debt and charity careexpenses have risen significantly so far this year. Anticipating many of the pending financialchallenges, Health Quest embarked on a project more than a year ago to look for opportunities tocreate greater efficiencies, increase revenues and reduce expenses. This initiative provided theframework for many of the new programs being implemented and will continue to be a guide for decisions over the next several years. As outlined in the initiative, Health Quest will continue to invest in expansion of services and newprograms designed to better serve the residents of the Hudson Valley. This will allow patients toobtain specialized medical care close to home while also keeping those revenues local. Plansinclude the addition of an advanced pain management program, full time presence of gynecologiconcology surgery specialists, and expansion of the vascular surgery program. The new ambulatorysurgery center at VBMC provides much needed expansion capacity and convenience for surgeonsand patients wanting to utilize the state of the art facilities offered at Health Quest facilities.
In addition, Health Quest will continue its planned expansion of Northern Dutchess Hospital. Thenew building on the Rhinebeck campus will include new operating rooms, single patient rooms andmedical office space to serve the increased demand for services at that hospital.Health Quest is also looking at ways to reduce its overall cost structure. It is renegotiating supplycontracts and will reduce the costs of things like pharmaceuticals and orthopedic implants. Non-supply costs will also be reduced. In addition, Health Quest has instituted a hiring freeze and hasnot been filling many positions as they have become vacant. Health Quest is also eliminating 27positions. Many of the individuals in those positions will be offered work elsewhere within thesystem. Position eliminations affect both union and non-union jobs in the VBMC and Health Questcorporate areas. Putnam Hospital Center and Northern Dutchess Hospital are unaffected by thereductions. The eliminated positions are approximately 0.5% percent of the organization’s morethan 4,915 employees.“Health Quest is taking these steps now in an effort to be financially prudent. It is our responsibilityto ensure that we will be able to provide the highest quality, patient-centered care now and in thelong-term,” according to Health Quest President and CEO Michael Weber. “These are difficultchoices to make; but necessary if we are to avoid the loss of services and hospital closures wehave seen across the state in recent years.”"Health Quest’s top priority is to continue to provide the same nationally-recognized quality careand safety our patients have come to expect," Weber said. "We remain strongly positioned as thebest and most financially stable healthcare system in the region."Health Quest is the Mid-Hudson Valley's largest healthcare system providing the highest qualitycare across a broad spectrum of services. Offering the full range of hospital services, pre-hospitalemergency care, homecare and nursing home care, the Health Quest system provides immediateand caring service to the one million people who reside in the New York counties of Columbia,Dutchess, Ulster, Orange, Putnam and northern Westchester.Health Quest hospitals include Northern Dutchess Hospital in Rhinebeck, Putnam Hospital Center in Carmel and Vassar Brothers Medical Center in Poughkeepsie, as well as Health Quest MedicalPractice. Health Grades, a leading hospital ratings organization, recently acknowledged HealthQuest as “the most recognized health system in the Hudson Valley”.###

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