Piedmont Healthcare and WellStar Health System, two of Atlanta’s largest hospital systems, announced Monday the creation of a new partnership designed to help both systems stay strong as health care evolves.
The new Georgia Health Collaborative is not a merger of the two competing systems, executives said. Instead, it’s an effort that will enable two strong, not-for-profit players to work together on a variety of challenges, from information technology to new ways to deliver care.
“We believe that the future of health care in America is through organizations working together and partnering and not through owning and controlling,” said Reynold J. Jennings, president and CEO of WellStar. “We want to bring the best in health care delivery together to share best practices and create innovations that will improve health care for all Americans while reducing costs.”
The two systems are already major forces in the Atlanta area. Together, they have 10 hospitals and more than 700 physicians. The partnership hopes to redefine the way health care is delivered in ways that will fit the demands of the future — when doctors and hospitals will have to find ways to save money by keeping people healthy instead of simply profiting by patching them up when they get sick.
“From a business standpoint and from a society standpoint, we have to participate actively in the re-engineering of our health care system,” said Dr. Patrick M. Battey, interim CEO of Piedmont Healthcare. “We’ve got to figure out a way to do it better.”
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