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NuHealth Board, NYS DOH approve agreements for Northwell to assist in NUMC restructuring

Nassau University Medical Center.

Northwell to provide operational management assistance, develop a five-year strategic plan


The state Department of Health and the Nassau Health Care Corporation (NuHealth) Board of Directors have approved agreements for Northwell Health to provide operational management assistance and develop a five-year strategic plan for Nassau University Medical Center (NUMC) and the A. Holly Patterson Extended Care Facility centers.

As part of the agreements, Northwell Senior Vice President of Operations Winnie Mack, RN, will serve as NuHealth’s president and chief executive officer. In addition, representatives from Northwell’s True North Healthcare Consulting will work with NuHealth Board Chair George Tsunis and other board members to facilitate strategic planning and provide operational, administrative and financial recommendations to improve performance

“As a safety net hospital, Nassau University Medical Center has a long tradition of caring for tens of thousands of needy patients,” said Michael J. Dowling, president and CEO of Northwell Health, which has had an affiliation with NUMC since 2005. “As Nassau County’s and New York State’s largest health care provider, Northwell believes we have a social responsibility to assist NuHealth, which is an indispensable asset and critical resource for residents of Nassau County.”

Nassau University Medical Center: county's lone public health care provider

 “The residents of Nassau County will benefit when Nassau University Medical Center draws on the expertise of Northwell to create a best practices hospital management infrastructure,” explained Mr. Tsunis. “Together, Nassau University Medical Center and Northwell will be laser-focused on providing outstanding healthcare to all those who need it -- regardless of their individual financial circumstances. These two great organizations are coming together to meet their social responsibilities and help patients.”

As Nassau County’s only public health care provider, NUMC is at a competitive disadvantage in the current and emerging health care environment, but cannot become part of a larger health system and still maintain its status as a public health entity.

Under the three-year strategic transformation advisory services agreement, a team of Northwell’s administrative and clinical leaders will identify operational, management and strategic needs, and develop recommendations to improve them. The NuHealth Board retains full responsibility for adopting specific strategies and recommendations, and will remain fully independent. In her new role, Ms. Mack will report to the NuHealth Board, and be responsible for implementing the strategic goals and objectives that it adopts. She will start work at NUMC today (Monday, April 15).

“The challenges facing NuHealth are significant, particularly once federal funding runs out from DSRIP (Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment) on March 31, 2020, but there are steps that can be taken to improve the efficiency of operations, identify cost savings and, most importantly, strengthen patient care through telemedicine and other innovative technologies already in place at our health system,” said Ms. Mack, who led turnaround efforts at Southside Hospital in Bay Shore, a formerly financially distressed hospital that now serves as Northwell’s flagship facility in Suffolk County.

While the two organization will work closely together as part of the consulting agreement, both Northwell and NuHealth will maintain their independence and separate governance structures.

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