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St. Joseph's, Phoenix Children's Negotiating Strategic Alliance for Pediatric Care

Thursday, April 1, 2010 General News J E 4
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PHOENIX, March 31 St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center and Phoenix Children's Hospital, two of the leading providers of healthcare in Arizona, announced today they are negotiating a strategic alliance that will make Arizona a destination for patients with the most complex and acute healthcare needs.

To view the multimedia assets associated with this release, please click: http://multivu.prnewswire.com/mnr/phoenix-childrens/43151/

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20100331/MM79058)

"St. Joseph's is already the hospital that provides extraordinary research, treatment and care for the most serious medical conditions," said Linda Hunt, Catholic Healthcare West Service Area Leader and CEO of St. Joseph's. "As part of our business direction, St. Joseph's is expanding our specialty programs such as neurosurgery, neurology, cardiology and pulmonology to fulfill the hospital's strategic plan to be a destination hospital for patients from throughout the United States and around the world."

To facilitate the necessary growth, St. Joseph's and Phoenix Children's will negotiate transferring a substantial portion of St. Joseph's pediatric service line to Phoenix Children's.

"We have a bold vision for the future of pediatric healthcare - one in which Phoenix Children's is a leading destination for the very best care for patients with the most complex childhood illnesses," says Robert L. Meyer, president and CEO for Phoenix Children's Hospital. "This landmark alliance takes advantage of our combined expertise on behalf of the children and families we serve and will confirm Phoenix Children's as one of the nation's top-tier children's hospitals in the nation."

The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) announced today is non-binding. If an alliance is reached the process would involve St. Joseph's transition of most of its pediatric services to Phoenix Children's, uniting much of their pediatric medical staff, nurses and other staff by mid-2011. The timing coincides with the expected completion of construction on Phoenix Childrens' new 11-story hospital tower and will make Phoenix home to the second largest children's hospital in the nation.

Hunt said when the two entities began discussing collaboration on specific clinical programs, they found a shared vision and parallel plans for growth. "As we discussed our common vision and plans, it just made sense to collaborate," she said. "We fully expect a positive outcome."

Under the MOU, St. Joseph's would retain its neonatal intensive care unit and continue to serve pediatric patients in its trauma unit as well as patients age 15 and older. In addition, St. Joseph's would be a minority member of Phoenix Children's with limited representation on the Phoenix Children's board of directors.

The commitment to negotiate serves as a starting point for much more detailed discussions by teams of physicians and employees from both organizations to discuss innovative ways to implement the alliance. "This is the start of a dynamic conversation in which both organizations have an important role in creating the future of healthcare," noted Meyer.

About St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center

Located in the heart of Phoenix, Arizona, St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center is a 697-bed, not-for-profit hospital that provides a wide range of health, social and support services, with special advocacy for the poor and underserved. Founded in 1895 by the Sisters of Mercy, St. Joseph's was the first hospital in the Phoenix area. The hospital is part of Catholic Healthcare West (CHW), one of the largest healthcare systems in the West with 41 hospitals in Arizona, California and Nevada.

About Phoenix Children's Hospital

Phoenix Children's Hospital is Arizona's only licensed children's hospital, providing world-class care in more than 40 pediatric specialties to our state's sickest kids. Though Phoenix Children's is one of the ten largest freestanding children's hospitals in the country, rapid population growth in Arizona means the Hospital must grow as well. Phoenix Children's is in the midst of a $588 million expansion plan to bring its special brand of family-centered care to even more patients and families. In process are significant upgrades to the Hospital's current campus, an aggressive physician recruitment effort, and new satellite centers in high growth areas of the Valley. For more information, visit the Hospital's Web site at www.phoenixchildrens.com.

SOURCE Phoenix Children's Hospital
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