DOVER-FOXCROFT - Mayo Regional Hospital has reached a strategic affiliation agreement with Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems, opening the way for further cooperation between the organizations in providing healthcare services to the communities they jointly serve.
The strategic affiliation, for a 3-year term, was formally approved April 26 by the Hospital Administrative District 4 Board of Directors. HAD 4 is the governing body for Mayo, which operates a 25-bed critical access hospital in Dover-Foxcroft, eight physician offices located in Corinna, Dexter, Dover-Foxcroft, Guilford and Milo, and the Mayo Emergency Medical Service ambulance covering much of Piscataquis and Penobscot counties.
"We see this step as offering nothing but positive opportunities for our organization," said Ralph Gabarro, Mayo's Chief Executive Officer. "As we look at initiatives we will be working on in our area in the future, cultivating a closer relationship with an organization of the caliber of Eastern Maine Healthcare can only benefit Mayo."
Gabarro added that the strategic affiliation should also strengthen Mayo's relationship with Charles A. Dean Memorial Hospital in Greenville, allowing both of Piscataquis County's hospitals to work more closely together on regional issues. C.A. Dean is a member hospital of EMHS.
Under the strategic affiliation agreement, Mayo retains its local autonomy and governing board, and both Mayo and Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems will remain organizationally and legally separate.
Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems has been called a model for healthcare delivery in Maine, providing a strong foundation for the continued availability of healthcare close to home. "We welcome Mayo Regional Hospital, and we understand from our experience that the professionals from Mayo will bring as much benefit to the system as they receive from it," observed Michelle Hood, president and CEO of EMHS. "We are a collaborative system, with many voices and one message to our region: when you need us, we will be there with the best possible care in the most appropriate setting."
The agreement provides opportunities for Mayo and EMHS to work together to improve the quality and safety of patient care. Mayo representatives will be active members of certain EMHS operational and clinical affinity groups and task forces. Mayo's medical staff president and chief nursing officer may attend meetings of the EMHS clinical coordinating committee -- a group of doctors and nurses working to improve patient safety and quality of care in the system through standardized best practice protocols. Mayo employees may participate in clinical education and management development activities, and EMHS planning and consulting services may be offered to Mayo.
Mayo already participates in EMHS group purchasing programs.
Mayo's strategic affiliation is similar to the relationship between EMHS and Houlton Regional Hospital.
EMHS member hospitals include Eastern Maine Medical Center and The Acadia Hospital in Bangor, The Aroostook Medical Center in Presque Isle, Blue Hill Memorial Hospital, C.A. Dean, Inland Hospital in Waterville and Sebasticook Valley Hospital in Pittsfield.
Mayo is the only Hospital Administrative District in Maine, and its board includes elected representatives from 12 communities: Abbot, Atkinson, Bradford, Cambridge, Dexter, Dover-Foxcroft, Guilford, Monson, Parkman, Sangerville, Sebec and Willimantic.
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