GROVE CITY, Pa., Aug. 19, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Officials from Grove City Medical Center, Allegheny Health Network (AHN) and Highmark Health joined community leaders and hospital employees today to celebrate the signing of an affiliation agreement that will strengthen and expand the services that Grove City provides to residents of Mercer County and the surrounding region. Pending government approval of the merger, the organizations expect to close on the affiliation in the next few months, establishing Grove City as AHN's ninth owned hospital and as a critical new network access point for high-quality acute care services between Pittsburgh and Erie.
"Today is a great day for Grove City and Mercer County, and an important milestone for Grove City Medical Center as we embark upon the next chapter in our organization's long history of service to this community," said Timothy R. Bonner, chairman of the hospital's board of directors. "After months of discussion and careful deliberation, we are extremely excited to affiliate with an exceptional organization that shares our charitable mission, vision and values. AHN and Highmark Health are committed to getting health care right, and we look forward to being part of the incredible work they are doing to provide the people of our region with the high-quality, high-value health services that they deserve."
As part of the affiliation agreement, AHN and GCMC will help to fund a new independent Grove City Health Care Foundation with an initial endowment of up to $30 million to be spent locally in Grove City on health and wellness initiatives. A local board, made up primarily of current GCMC board members, will determine how those resources are allocated. AHN will also invest an additional $40 million over the next 10 years to further enhance GCMC's clinical programs, technological capabilities and physical infrastructure.
AHN will add or enhance a host of clinical services at GCMC, including primary care, neurology, oncology, cardiology, behavioral health, orthopedics, pediatrics, and general surgery. The network will also expand telehealth services at the hospital to include tele-dermatology, tele-stroke and autoimmune consultations, and install the Epic electronic health record system at both Grove City's main campus and its satellite facilities. AHN is the largest health care network in western Pennsylvania with a singular integrated electronic health record across its many sites of care.
"In Allegheny Health Network and Highmark Health, we have chosen partners who are on the leading-edge of health care's transformation to a value-driven model of care that places the best interests of patients and communities at the center of the equation," said Robert Jackson, CEO of Grove City Medical Center. "This affiliation is wonderful news for our many patients, families and local employers who rely on the health services that Grove City provides in this community. Our future has never been brighter than it is today."
Highmark has more than 135,000 insured members who live in the counties served by GCMC. The affiliation between AHN with GCMC ensures those members will have a close-to-home resource for their health and wellness needs over the long-term.
"Establishing strong partnerships with outstanding health care institutions is a key component of our strategy for building a world-class health and wellness company that provides an unsurpassed experience and the best possible outcomes for our patients and members," said David Holmberg, Highmark Health President and CEO. "An affiliation with Grove City is just the latest example of how we are delivering on that promise and once again stepping up to invest in a western Pennsylvania community that we have had the privilege of serving for many years."
Grove City will be the first hospital to fully affiliate with AHN since 2013.
Together with Highmark, AHN has invested more than $1.5 billion over the past five years to improve access to care in communities across the greater western Pennsylvania region, including the construction of community cancer centers, new neighborhood hospitals and outpatient facilities, and the expansion and enhancement of capabilities and services at its existing hospitals. The Network has also formed official partnerships or programmatic relationships with many other providers in the region to help further extend the reach of its clinical institutes and expertise.
Residents of the Grove City region have received their medical care by AHN physicians for many years, both through close-to-home services in the community and seamless transition to Allegheny General Hospital for higher level care when needed.
"At Allegheny Health Network, we place immense value on the essential role that community hospitals and other community-based resources play in the overall quality of a region's health care delivery system," said Cynthia Hundorfean, AHN President and CEO. "Grove City Medical Center provides outstanding care and services to the Mercer County region, and we look forward to working with the hospital's many talented and dedicated caregivers to assure that tradition only grows stronger in the months, years and decades ahead."
About Grove City Medical Center
Grove City Medical Center is a 67-bed acute care hospital in Mercer County. GCMC also operates six outpatient clinics and lab sites throughout its service footprint, offering cancer care, cardiac care, lab services, home health, and imaging services. GCMC opened in November 1981, created through the merger of Grove City Hospital and Bashline Memorial Hospital, both of which were founded in the early 1900s. For more information, visit www.gcmcpa.org.
About Allegheny Health Network
Allegheny Health Network (www.AHN.org), a Highmark Health company, is an integrated healthcare delivery system serving the greater Western Pennsylvania region. Among the network's 250 clinical locations are eight hospitals — Allegheny General Hospital, its flagship academic medical center in Pittsburgh; Allegheny Valley Hospital in Natrona Heights, Pa.; Canonsburg Hospital in Canonsburg, Pa.; Forbes Hospital in Monroeville, Pa.; Jefferson Hospital in Jefferson Hills, Pa.; Saint Vincent Hospital in Erie, Pa.; West Penn Hospital in Pittsburgh; and Westfield Memorial Hospital in Westfield, NY. AHN also is home to a comprehensive research institute; Health + Wellness Pavilions; home- and community-based health services; and a group purchasing organization. The network employs 20,000 people and has more than 2,400 doctors on its medical staff. Established in 2013, AHN's member hospitals share legacies of charitable care that date back more than 160 years.
SOURCE Allegheny Health Network