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OSF Saint Elizabeth to consolidate services

Changes will occur gradually over next several months

Published: Saturday, Jan. 12, 2013 6:59 a.m. CST

(Continued from Page 1)

OTTAWA, Ill. — In order to improve efficiency and better position itself for significant payment system reform, OSF Saint Elizabeth Medical Center will consolidate some of its services over the next several months. 

A staff reduction is set to occur, though the hospital is prepared to offer retention and severance packages.

A total of 34 individuals will be impacted from areas including the hospital’s laboratory, patient accounts, home health, and health information management departments.

Additional areas include Behavioral Health CHOICES and Ottawa Regional Medical Center, a Part of OSF HealthCare.

“While a staff reduction is always difficult and something we’d like to avoid, our upcoming consolidation will reduce our overall operational costs,” said Robert Chaffin, president and CEO at OSF Saint Elizabeth. He noted that the positions weren’t being eliminated immediately, but rather several months down the road, to afford time for impacted individuals to secure new employment.

“Our goal is to help place our employees who are affected as a result,” said Robert Gibson, senior director of operating services at OSF Saint Elizabeth. “We have an employee assistance program to help out as much as possible.

“While we hope to offer transfers to other positions within OSF, we will assist our employees by providing letters of recommendation, offering assistance with writing resumes, and furnishing information on how to file for unemployment compensation, in the event a transfer is not available.”

OSF Saint Elizabeth expects the consolidation will ultimately provide an even better service experience to patients, families, and physicians as a common electronic medical record is brought on board to optimize the delivery of services and standardize processes.

The hospital also has plans to make a secure online patient portal called OSF myHealth available in the future. This web-based application allows users to access test results, communicate with their doctor, review medical records, and schedule appointments.Another benefit to the new electronic medical record will be seamless sharing of information between facilities (i.e. – if a cardiac patient is transported from OSF Saint Elizabeth to OSF Saint Francis, the medical team in Peoria will instantly be equipped with full access to the patient’s medical history and information, and that much more ready to take action).

The timeframe for rolling out the new electronic medical record and making the necessary consolidations hasn’t yet been finalized, but the hospital’s leadership team anticipates it will be during the summer of 2013.

OSF Saint Elizabeth Medical Center, a 99-bed acute care facility formerly known as Ottawa Regional Hospital & Healthcare Center, has been dedicated to providing efficient and quality health care to the Ottawa community since 1895. 

Located at 1100 East Norris Drive, OSF Saint Elizabeth provides a full range of services, including inpatient and outpatient medical and surgical care, emergency care, pre-natal and post-partum care, physical therapy, behavioral health services, home health and hospice care. For more information, visit www.osfsaintelizabeth.org.

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