OSF Saint Anthony’s Health Center
ALTON — At OSF Saint Anthony’s Health Center, providing health care to patients begins with the patient, not the provider.
With progressive investments and actions announced by its leadership March 9, the myriad of services provided by the center will soon become much more available and accessible to residents right where they are, with primary care physicians being located out among the community one of the key components of the plan that moves the center into the future.
Plans shared recently by Ajay Pathak, OSF Saint Anthony’s president and CEO, are built on a foundational goal of improving access and providing quality health care to patients closer to their own homes, with the patients themselves as a central focus and services built around what the patients need and want.
“Services will be built around the patient, with open and timely access for them to a team of physicians, nurses, and other health care providers that are all focused on what the patient is facing,” Pathak said.
He added the actions directly address access to care for residents while also thinking about the needed economic development of the Riverbend region. OSF Saint Anthony’s will make significant investments to ensure access to services for everyone.
The health center will add facilities to house dedicated care teams, each providing a coordinated and holistic approach to a patient’s health care experiences. Pathak said examples of this would include primary care centers and cancer treatment centers that have teams of providers working together with a focus on the patient’s individual medical needs.
Pathak also said that, because of this new model of patient-centered care, OSF Saint Anthony’s will expand three of its core community services. Programs planned for expansion to better address residents’ needs include therapy and psychiatric services, and a new oncology center will be built.
Saint Anthony’s plans to open new primary care centers at convenient sites throughout the Riverbend as well, “providing open access for patients, a nice entry point,” Pathak said. Locations have not yet been finalized but will represent a multi-million-dollar investment, Pathak said.
Other highlights of the plans include the following investments:
• Recruiting additional primary care physicians and providers to join the health center’s team of talented, high-quality doctors already in the area.
• Renovating the Saint Anthony’s Health Center facility, including enhancements and new technology for the Emergency Department, to accommodate a growing number of patients, as well as enhancements to the Intensive Care Unit and other specialty services
• Continuing to elevate the patient experience with improved flow, processes, communication and scheduling.
• Moving OSF Saint Anthony’s Health Center toward a single, unified campus over the course of this year, making transitions over the next nine months.
The primary care centers are most likely at least three years out, and a new comprehensive cancer care center to be housed on the health center’s main campus is projected for completion in 2019. Meanwhile, radiation and oncology services will continue to be provided through the campus at Saint Clare’s.
As for the future of the Saint Clare’s campus, and to take this plan into reality, some services and programs will be moved closer to one another. Pathak said during the transition, some services will be moved from the Saint Clare’s campus.
• Psychological Services will move to a more convenient location. OSF Saint Anthony’s Community Health Needs Assessment report identified these services as one of the region’s top priorities.
• Outpatient Therapies, including physical, occupational and speech therapy, will relocate to another site where they too will be easily accessible.
• The Sleep Lab will move to a different location.
• Diabetes Services will be integrated into OSF Saint Anthony’s Physician Group and be led by the region’s only full-time endocrinologist.
• Home Care and Hospice Care will move off campus and into the community.
• Pharmacy and Lab Services will be integrated into the OSF Saint Anthony’s main campus.
Several programs at Saint Clare’s will be discontinued, likely by the end of this year. Those programs include in-patient rehabilitation services, inpatient skilled nursing, adult day services and outpatient wound care. OSF Saint Anthony’s will work with other local providers to make sure the needs for these services continue to be met.
OSF Saint Anthony’s Health Center will continue to operate Saint Clare’s Villa at its current location, maintaining its obligations and commitments to its residents and regulatory bodies. The health center’s administration will pursue and discuss with other organizations the prospect of owning and operating the facility.
“The future of Saint Clare’s itself is in process,” Pathak said. “There are meetings happening right now between the community and its leaders, discussing how we can invest in it and in the region, making for better uses of the facility for everyone.”
As OSF Saint Anthony’s moves toward a unified campus over the course of this year, there will also be a gradual reduction of jobs in some departments.
“We are committed to helping the persons in those positions to find new placements, either within the OSF HealthCare Ministry or with other organizations,” Pathak said.