News release from Lutheran Hospital:
Lutheran Health Network to Consolidate Some Services from St. Joseph to Other Network Facilities
(March 10, 2020) – In another step toward operating as an integrated health system, Lutheran Health Network today announced the consolidation of some services from St. Joseph Hospital to other network facilities. The transition comes as construction progresses on Lutheran Downtown Hospital and will result in current services more closely reflecting planned services for the new hospital.
“With these adjustments, we are centralizing services in locations across our network in a way that maximizes our ability to serve the community as a cohesive, comprehensive network and improve patient experience and quality of care,” said Mark Medley, FACHE, Lutheran Health Network CEO. “We are also affirming our long-standing commitment to caring for patients in the downtown area – now and in the future.”
Under the plan, St. Joseph will maintain 24-hour emergency services, acute and critical care inpatient beds and adult behavioral services as well as surgical suites on an on-call basis. Highlights of the consolidation include:
-The Burn Center will transition to Lutheran Hospital next month. The consolidation of the trauma and burn programs into a tertiary care location aligns with national best practices and will provide burn patients and their families with easy access to additional specialized support, should it be needed.
-Cardiac catheterization services will transition to Lutheran Hospital’s Heart and Valve Center as well as to Dupont Hospital and Kosciusko Community Hospital when cardiac cath services open later this year.
-Transitional care services, which are widely available across Fort Wayne, will end in the coming months. The closure will occur after all current patients have been discharged. We are confident that other providers are able to meet the community’s current and future needs. Lutheran Health Network will continue to offer transitional care services at Bluffton Regional Medical Center and Dukes Memorial Hospital.
-Similar to transitional care, geropsych services will end after all current patients have been discharged. Changes to the approach to caring for patients with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease has resulted in the development of memory units in an increasing number of long-term care and assisted living facilities.
“The St. Joseph Board is supportive of LHN’s vision for the future of healthcare in downtown Fort Wayne. This is a logical approach for the network to take,” said Jerry Henry, Chair, St. Joseph Board of Trustees. “In the near term, St. Joseph will continue providing services most relevant to the downtown area now and will offer a broad range of services in the new hospital to meet the needs of the growing downtown community.”
Employees impacted by the consolidation are being reassigned to similar positions across the network, primarily at Lutheran Hospital and Dupont Hospital. It is anticipated that the majority will remain employed by Lutheran Health Network.
“St. Joseph Hospital has an experienced and caring staff who have faithfully served the downtown community for many, many years,” said Jacob Golich, FACHE, CEO, St. Joseph Hospital. “As the community needs evolve and we tailor the hospital’s services to these needs, we are heartened that our outstanding employees will continue caring for the patients they’ve come to know at other hospitals in our network.”