Wednesday, June 11, 2008

OSF Acquires "High Profile" Practices

OSF Expansion (06/09/08)
Journal Star
Posted Jun 09, 2008 @ 10:53 PM
Last update Jun 09, 2008 @ 11:41 PM

PEORIA — Citing stiffer competition and a desire to make itself a household name, OSF Healthcare System is looking to increase its market share by expanding its reach throughout a wide swath of the state.

The not-for-profit organization that operates six Illinois hospitals, including flagship facility OSF Saint Francis Medical Center, announced last week it would add three high-profile private medical practices to its fold in an effort to boost its regional presence.

The three doctor groups, specializing in heart care, children's health and neuroscience, were chosen for their high volume of patients and the fact that hospital officials see the need for those specialties growing in the future.

Keith Steffen, St. Francis CEO, said in the last 12 to 14 months more health care facilities have popped up - ranging from hospitals to private clinics - especially around Chicago and its suburbs, eroding sections of OSF Healthcare System's reach. By adding the specialist groups, the health care company hopes to flesh out and cement its status as an area player in the medical field.

"If you look at what Chicago's doing, they're moving west and south. There's no question about it. They're building new hospitals, they're putting up physician clinics," Steffen said. "So for us and for the city of Peoria, it's defending our peripheries. If we're not out there, somebody else is going to be out there."

Hospital officials said their objective is not to compete with local facilities but instead eventually vie for customers who usually seek treatment in larger cities such as Chicago, St. Louis, Minneapolis and Indianapolis. The goal is to turn the health system into a regional draw for patients who will know it for its highly specialized and unequaled care, they said.

Since the early 1990s, St. Francis has served 34 Illinois counties and currently sees more than 30 percent of its patients coming from outside the Tri-County Area. Steffen hopes to increase that number.

Observers of the health care industry said the move likely will bolster OSF Healthcare System's bottom line as well. Doctors who specialize in certain fields typically rake in more money for health care facilities than general or family practitioners.

"They are one of the highest revenue-producing services," said Bettina French, a spokeswoman with the Illinois Hospital Association. "They offset losses."

French said the strategy of shoring up specialists is not unusual and is turning into a nationwide trend as hospital try to set themselves apart from each other. Though in the future, she said, the rankings given by patients on a Web site may one day serve as the litmus test for a facility's level of care.

Jim Farrell, director for marketing and communications for OSF Healthcare System, said the move also will help the organization enlist more specialists by offering prospective recruits a high number of patients and strong infrastructure from the hospital. Costs also are expected to decline since consolidation will keep services under one roof.

George Geagea, chief operating officer for Associated University Neurosurgeons, one of the groups bought by OSF Healthcare System, said the group sees the deal as a chance to create a destination for health care in the Midwest.

"We want to build an institution reputation," he said.

Comments (11)

1. Why do you need to compete, spread your range and attract new business if you are non-profit? People will continue to buy into this until we have no choice but OSF. Charities don't vie for customers to take their services. People don't buy stock in a corporation unless they plan on making money. Private clinics should not be a problem if you aren't trying to attract their customers who are willing to pay extra dollars for health care.

2. It has been rumored for many months that Heart Care Midwest was in financial problems. This may be their only way of staying afloat.

3. Heart Care Midwest has always been tied with OSF. Their doctors practice there. They have an OSF lab in their basement. I would imagine their "financial problems" is the same as OSF, the desire to make more money. They are about as non-profit as the OSF corporation.

4. there is not an osf lab in the basement of hcm alot of healthcare providers are losing money due to change in insurance, medicare is not paying for alot of the procedures that these patients need and the physicians do what is best for the patient,whether they get paid or not. besides that with our economy so screwed right now who doesn't have "financial problems"?

5. oh yeah the HCM physicians go to all of the hospitals in our area this includes osf, methodist,pekin,bromenn,cCanton-Graham Hospital
cottage,st. josephs,st mary's. they also go to satelite clinics which include
Carthage-Memorial Hospital
Kewanee-Kewanee Hospital
Macomb-McDonough District Hospital
Monmouth-OSF Holy Family Hospital
Ottawa-Community Hospital of Ottawa
Pontiac-OSF Saint James - John W. Albrecht Medical Center
Peru-Illinois Valley Community Hospital
Princeton-Perry Memorial Hospital
Spring Valley-St. Margaret's Hospital
so there is no favortism here. Osf is grgowing so HCM is going to grow with them.

6. saint francis makes a lot of money tangentially by having all the foundations that everyone contributes into that feed right back into the hospital. what a racket.
every time you give in this town it goes back into the same system

7. They can afford it
$80,000.00 for 3 days

8. John A. Carroll, M.D.

Will Peoria’s population be better off with OSF’s acquisition of three high yield specialties? Were OSF's motives to improve the health of people or to improve OSF's bottom line?

Why didn’t OSF direct its attention to promote primary care, preventative medicine, and psychiatric care for the people of Peoria? Quite simply, these areas don’t make enough money for OSF.

The OSF Health Care System CEO’s annual salary exceeds 1 million dollars in large part due to "not-for-profit" OSF-Saint Francis Medical Center. Something seems wrong here...

And what do Mr. Steffen’s comments about “defending the peripheries” have to do with the OSF founding Sisters philosophy of serving the needy with the “greatest care and love”?

Peorians are being duped again by OSF.

9. Agree
That Dr Carroll knows what happens when you are on the wrong end of this christian organization.
I am not sure who this neurosurgeon is he sure is not any one I hav ever heard of and I have been in the medical community for 22 years here in town.
I do know that Dr Carroll has always spoke the truth.
when they take away your choice what do you have to gain.
By state statute they can not restrict the physicians that come to the hospital but they will strangle them by dictating the referral patterns of the physicians they own.
What a sell out for heart care and for the neurosurgeons.
if they could run their businesses well they would not be joining but cojmpeting
they are weakly managed

10. Reply to agree
The person who made a comment from the neurosurgery office is the chief operating officer, not a neurosurgeon. That is probably why you have not heard of him.

Also it is true Dr Carroll has always spoken what he perceives to be the truth, but many would say his perceptions are not accurate.

11. The people who disagree with Dr. Carroll are tied with OSF. If something is non-profit they don't compete, they don't advertise except for contributions. If you are really non-profit you don't go out looking for people to give your service to, you let them come to you. Here is a novel idea, operate our medical system on totally a break even basis. The people who take home a salary should be those who directly provide, or oversee, patient care. No more corporate hospitals, no more big profit insurance companies. Instead of getting a 50% return on your health care dollar how about 75 to 80 percent going directly into patient care. That 50% going into the pockets of speculators could pay every physician, and cover the shortfall on hospital bills. Our emergency services, schools, libraries, highways etc work like this. Suggest this and Insurance companies, and corporate hospitals, wave the awful "socialism" flag. How long are we going to be stupid enough to fall for their scare tactics. My neighbor was an OSF employee, I was amazed at the lies her employer filled her head with in the 90's attempt for public operated health care. Best one was the aides would be doing surgery. What a hoot.

No comments: