|December 12, 2012
Building on a rich history of healthcare for Anson County residents for nearly one hundred years, Carolinas HealthCare System continues to reshape how it delivers care to better meet the unique healthcare needs of the community for the next century by creating the most ideal settings and services.
This latest Certificate of Need approval represents a noteworthy transition from the standalone community hospital created by the Hill-Burton Act of 1946 intended to meet 20th century, post-war healthcare needs, to creating a more sustainable, long-term healthcare model that provides high quality healthcare through innovative technology, partnerships and access to the right care for the right need at the right time.
"Healthcare systems across the country are increasingly challenged to meet the demands of a rapidly changing environment while meeting the needs and expectations of the patients and communities they serve,” said Joseph G. Piemont, President and Chief Operating Officer of Carolinas HealthCare System. “In order to achieve this, we must break the current mold of delivering care that has been in place for decades and innovate to create higher quality, better access and an improved experience; ultimately creating real value for our patients. This is the first of potentially many applications for this approach that can be created throughout our System and we are pleased the state is supportive of our efforts to modernize the delivery model and transform care.”
When fully operational in 2014, Carolinas HealthCare System will better address the health needs of the county and the patients traditionally served by Anson Community Hospital with a more tailored design for care delivery. Technology solutions such as electronic medical records and virtual care services will improve access and continuity of care as will enhancing the number and breadth of specialist physicians practicing locally. Additionally, a team of healthcare professionals for primary and preventive care will provide the highest quality, most critical level of care for that community.
“The current trajectory of healthcare costs and demands on providers is unsustainable. We need to shift the paradigm of providing ‘sick’ care to providing truly integrated, value-based ‘health’ care,” said Zeev Neuwirth, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Physician Services Group, Carolinas HealthCare System. “Carolinas HealthCare System is building a differentiable model by designing a systems-based approach, aiming to deliver high quality care to its patients and its populations with greater efficiency.”
Designed though a robust “lean” process, the project was approved last week by the N.C. Division of Health Service Regulation and will replace the existing hospital with a new facility of 46,800 square feet. The unique design and flexible shared spaces allow a more efficient use of patient beds, combining utilization for both inpatient and observation needs; emergency and surgical needs as well as primary care services. Also included in the design is a central nursing unit for the entire facility along with pharmacy and laboratory services.
This model also includes new programs including faith-based community health services, wellness coaches and a sliding scale pharmacy with medication management counseling, among others. In addition to inpatient and outpatient services, the new campus will place additional emphasis on wellness, disease prevention, disease management and screenings.
With approval from the state, planning can continue with site selection and design, a process that is expected to take about six months. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2013 and will take 12 to 15 months. Anson Community Hospital will continue to operate during planning and construction of the new campus. The Lillie Bennett Nursing Center will remain in operation as it is now.
Anson County is about 50 miles east of Charlotte. Of the 100 counties in the state it ranks 74th in population and 36th in square miles with 531. Potential sites for the new location close to U.S. 74 in Wadesboro, N.C. are under consideration by Carolinas HealthCare System. Total cost of the project is expected to be about $20 million.
Through this design, Carolinas HealthCare System continues to challenge traditional healthcare delivery norms and create unique and direct access points for its patients so they can receive the most sophisticated healthcare in the Southeast in the most effective ways.