Nanticoke Health Services (NHS) of Seaford, DE, and Peninsula Regional Health System (PRHS), based in Salisbury, MD, today announced that the affiliation of the two health services has passed final state and federal regulatory approval.
Nanticoke Memorial Hospital, the Nanticoke Physician Network, and all other Nanticoke healthcare services have joined the Peninsula Regional Health System. McCready Health of Crisfield, MD, is expected to merge later this year. The result is the creation of a revolutionary new health system designed to enhance inpatient, outpatient and emergency care, and wellness services across the entire Delmarva Peninsula.
“Healthcare systems are more frequently coming together to meet the challenges of an ever- evolving environment. We are proud to now have officially merged, and together as a new system we will be working throughout the region to better the health and wellness of Delmarva,” said Steve Leonard, Ph.D. MBA, FACHE, President/CEO of the Peninsula Regional Health System. “We continue to look for partners on this journey and are excited about McCready joining soon and the opportunities to grow that will follow.”
Nanticoke Memorial Hospital and Peninsula Regional Medical Center, the hospitals themselves, will keep their names. A branding study is currently underway to develop a new name for the health system that will reflect the combined culture and service delivery promise of Peninsula Regional, Nanticoke and McCready. The new name will be revealed in late Spring.
The new health system immediately expands access to care for residents across the region. It is expected that services in Seaford will not only remain in place but also be enhanced, including additional technology and procedures, and possibly new locations for care.
While the two healthcare providers are legally one organization, it is still very early in the collaborative process. A full strategic plan, with a goal to expand access to care and provide more services closer to where people live and work, is being drafted.
There are no immediate plans for staffing changes. Eventually, the new health system will incorporate nearly 5,000 employees, which affords multiple employment opportunities.
Integration teams from all areas across both organizations have been working to become one healthcare system for a number of months, and that continues. Teams are drawing upon strengths from both organizations to develop a plan for the future.
“It will take a year or two to work through the integration process. Bringing together two robust organizations requires a tremendous amount of work on not only the coordination of patient care, but the back office services, too, like billing, credentialing and payroll,” Leonard said. “As we integrate processes and align protocols and policies, we are developing a new brand and merging two cultures. We are excited for the opportunities it will present to allow us to continue to provide better, more efficient and more effective care for our patients.”