If an affiliation agreement signed in mid-August is completed, St. Louis-based Ascension Health will transfer parenthood of Mount St. Mary's Hospital and Health Center in Lewiston, N.Y., to Catholic Health System of Buffalo, N.Y.
The 175-bed Mount St. Mary's has been partnering with Catholic Health for four years, and has had a formal collaborative partnership with the Buffalo system for two of those years. The transfer of parenthood would make Mount St. Mary's a "full member" of Catholic Health, according to Catholic Health leaders. This status would give Mount St. Mary's access to Catholic Health's administrative and support services and make it a member of a network that currently includes four Catholic Health hospital campuses, an affiliate hospital campus and additional facilities around Western New York.
Catholic Health is sponsored equally by the Diocese of Buffalo; the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul; and the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas' New York, Pennsylvania and Pacific West Community. Catholic Health is equally a member of Ascension Health; Livonia, Mich.-based CHE Trinity Health and the Diocese of Buffalo.
Catholic Health leaders said that they and the leaders of Ascension Health and Mount St. Mary's determined that transferring the hospital to Catholic Health could help strengthen Mount St. Mary's and Catholic Health. "After studying Mount St. Mary's medical and operational needs, it was determined that Catholic Health's culture, mission and values most closely matched Mount St. Mary's, giving the two organizations a common platform to begin this partnership," said Joe McDonald, president and chief executive of Catholic Health.
A joint news release says under the affiliation agreement, the health care providers will enhance primary and ambulatory services, expand home and community-based services, improve operational efficiency and hospital performance and support physician recruitment. The organizations will determine through a strategic planning process exactly how they will address these goals, according to McDonald.
Information on the financial aspects of the affiliation and the potential impact on staffing and services is not yet available. It will be determined during due diligence processes, McDonald said.
The boards of Ascension Health and Catholic Health and of Ascension's sponsoring body have approved the affiliation. The arrangement also requires certificate of need approval and other sign-offs from the state of New York. Catholic Health filed for certificate of need approvals in early September.
Leaders of the organizations involved in the affiliation discussions expect to complete the deal by the middle of next year.
The 250-bed Our Lady of Peace nursing care facility in Lewiston, which is currently owned by Mount St. Mary's, will remain part of Ascension Health. It will be part of the newly formed Ascension Health Senior Care division.
Copyright © 2014 by the Catholic Health Association
of the United States
For reprint permission, contact Betty Crosby
or call (314) 253-3477.