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RGH, Clifton Springs hospitals join forces

Rochester, N.Y. - Clifton Springs Hospital will become part of the Rochester General Health System. Officials at RGH announced the partnership on Friday.

Clifton Springs Hospital is an important part of this community and has a long history of receiving top marks in quality and patient satisfaction, said Mark Clement, RGHS president and CEO. Having such a highly regarded hospital affiliate in Ontario County will enable RGHS to continue our progress toward building a regional integrated health care delivery system focused on improving quality, efficiency, affordability and patient access."

Our leadership team and board chose RGHS because of its proven track record for helping affiliated hospitals pursue their community-centered missions, saidLew Zulick, MD, interim CEO, Clifton Springs Hospital & Clinic.

We are impressed by the growth and quality improvements at Newark-Wayne Community Hospital following its affiliation with RGHS. That record, coupled with RGHSs outstanding reputation for quality and service, made RGHS the obvious partner.

In 2007, RGHS began the work of integrating its health care delivery system with Newark-Wayne Community Hospital.

The announcement today mirrors a trend among hospitals and health care systems nationwide. A trend that has many rural hospitals closing their doors due to the growing costs of navigating regulatory guidelines and struggles in recruiting top physicians to smaller networks.

Hospital officials said RGHS has already helped recruit more than 100 new physicians to the Newark-Wayne Community Hospital and they envision similar results in Clifton Springs. The result is people don't have to leave their community for quality healthcare.

Impact on Clifton Springs Community

It doesn't take anyone very long to figure out the impact Clifton Springs Hospital has on the rural community it calls home.

Stop at The Clifton Deli and you'll meet owner John Ryan whose proud of his now three year-old business.

"The hospital is really beneficial for everybody here on Main Street," explain Ryan. "Because it brings people in from out of town and it brings a lot of business to us because people want to get outside the hospital, don't want to be stuck in there all the time, they want to get out and walk down Main Street."

The hospital is a short walk from Main Street and also one of the biggest employers in town which also helps businesses like Ryan's.

"Lunchtime is our busiest time of the day. A lot of it is either people that work over there or people that are visiting people in the hospital and that is really the staple of our business," he explained. "We get a lot of catering orders for the representatives that come in and do luncheons, we do a lot of sub trays, a lot of wrap platters and stuff like that."

While you wait for your order to be prepared you may chat up another customer like Susan Osborne who offers more reasons why the hospital is so important to this community. Osborne is the marketing director at the Ashton Place Senior Living Community located just a couple of blocks away from the hospital.

"It's a big selling point for us I mean the doctors are right across the street, less than a mile from our facility, so to have them accessible to our residents if vital," explained Osborne.

The potential for expanded access to healthcare services in this community is also promising for folks like Osborne.

"Definitely, having access to specialists or doctors that wouldn't normally be in our area is definitely something that's going (sic) be to our advantage," she said.

Osborne invited 13WHAM News down to Ashton Place after lunch and introduced us to a popular resident, John Vesco. He moved from Farmington to Clifton Springs a year ago in part because it located him and his wife much closer to Clifton Springs Hospital.

"Having it down the road helps, it helps a whole lot," explained Vesco.

"I'm 81 years old, I'm reaching a point where driving is no longer fun you know what I mean?" he continued. "Driving into Rochester has never been fun, you know the traffic situation there and in the wintertime Rochester's no fun driving either. So it will be a blessing, I mean for everybody here because there are a lot of people here that don't drive."

Rochester General Health System is still exploring the proposed merger with Unity Health System and this affiliation with Clifton Springs will only widen the system's growing footprint in Western New York.

This affiliation still requires regulatory approval and that is expected to take three to six months.

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Washington Times