The University of Colorado Hospital and Poudre Valley Health System signed a joint operating agreement in early 2012 creating University of Colorado Health, a health system aimed at widening health care services and providing unparalleled patient care in the Rocky Mountain region..
A partnership between University of Colorado Hospital (UCH) and Poudre Valley Health System (PVHS) is truly a joining of equals. This partnership combines the clinical and financial strengths of each institution to ensure the continued delivery of the highest-quality care in Colorado and the Rocky Mountain Region. The partnership will provide advantages to all parties, as well as patients throughout the Rocky Mountain Region.
The organizations began exploring a closer relationship partly in anticipation of changes and challenges of health insurance reform. And while these changes remain largely undefined, it is clear that health care organizations across the country will be doing more with less in the future. There are great advantages in bringing institutions that enjoy notable clinical and financial strength together in a time of uncertain reform.
Much of the consolidation now sweeping the American health care industry has been driven by the financial or clinical weakness of one of the partners, but University of Colorado Hospital and Poudre Valley Health System are two very strong institutions.
Why UCH and PVHS?
Both of these entities have deep roots in the community that when linked will create a system that will be greater than the sum of its parts. These strong community ties will only be strengthened by connecting two local organizations with similarly high standards of quality and distinct areas of service within the region.
Separately, these institutions can continue providing superior care to patients and service to the communities they serve. Together, they will push the boundaries of medicine further, attracting more research funding and hosting more clinical trials.
Both organizations have:
- Enviable financial conditions, and are highly evaluated by national credit rating agencies
- Three Magnet designations by the American Nursing Credentialing Center three consecutive times-an accomplishment only 31 hospitals worldwide have achieved
- Repeatedly been ranked among the best hospitals in the country by U.S. News & World Report, other ratings services and health care organizations that closely examine medical specialties
- Multiple Nightingale Award winners for excellence in nursing care
- Medical outcomes above state averages in many areas
- Deep involvement in implementing Institute for Healthcare Improvement, patient safety and clinical quality initiatives
What will be gained?
The benefits of a closer relationship between these two organizations are numerous, and include:
- The combining of academic-based and community-focused medicine, bringing innovative and leading-edge care to patients throughout the Rocky Mountain region.
- Being able to call on the collaborative care of the deepest bench of medical specialists in the region, especially in quickly advancing areas such as oncology, cardiovascular surgery, the neurosciences and the biosciences.
- Top-quality training sites for the next generation of health care professionals eager to meet the needs of diverse populations from the Front Range to rural areas across the Eastern Plains.
- More opportunities for people in underserved and non-urban areas to get family and complex care.
What does this new system look like?
University of Colorado Hospital and Poudre Valley Health System will still retain their own, separate boards of directors.
A new, central board of directors has been formed to make system-wide strategic and capital decisions for University of Colorado Health. However, each hospital will control operations at its respective facility. No significant changes in leadership or staffing are expected in the short term.
Colorado Springs voters will wrap up an election Aug. 28 to decide whether the city should lease Memorial Health System to University of Colorado Health. Mail-in voting began Aug. 8.
To the north, Ivinson Memorial Hospital in Laramie entered into negotiations July 16 with University of Colorado Health over a management agreement that would bring the 99-bed hospital into the system’s expanding sphere.