If you're rushed to the hospital in Burlington this week, you won't be going to Fletcher Allen Health Care. Instead, you'll be driven up the hill to the University of Vermont Medical Center. It's the same place; it just has a different name. But there's more to it than just a change in name. John Brumsted is president and CEO of what's now called the University of Vermont Medical Center and the University of Vermont Health Network. And he filled us in on what's behind the name change.
The hospital formerly known as Fletcher Allen Health Care, which is tied closely with the University of Vermont, changed its name to the University of Vermont Medical Center to reflect the strong academic component in the hospital’s mission.
“We think the name truly tells people what we’re all about,” said John Brumsted, president and CEO of The University of Vermont Medical Center and The University of Vermont Health Network. “As we extend and develop the University of Vermont Health Network, we have those same academic values, and the same academic mission to go along with the delivery of healthcare.”
The University of Vermont Health Network is a partnership of four hospitals: the University of Vermont Medical Center in Burlington; Central Vermont Medical Center in Berlin, Vermont; Champlain Valley Physicians Hospital in Plattsburgh, New York; and Elizabethtown Community Hospital in Elizabethtown. The Network also includes all of the associated practices that go with these hospitals, as well as their physicians, nurses and staff.
Together, these organizations function as one healthcare delivery system. Their main goal is to make sure this system delivers the highest quality health care services, as well as provide services that are close to home, affordable and sustainable.
“In today’s environment, with everybody being very cost-conscious, the best way to do that is to bring the organizations together very, very closely.”
For example, the University of Vermont Medical Center and the Central Vermont Medical Center submitted a coalesced budget to the Green Mountain Care Board in August. If approved, the two hospitals would have one combined budget between them.
“We’re trying to operate as much as we can as one organization, because just like other businesses, that allows us to do things together and save.”
Although there are currently no plans to partner with more hospitals, Brumstead and other CEOs of Vermont hospitals on the Vermont Hospital and Health System Board continue to discuss the ways in which these hospitals can work together.
One example of this is OneCare Vermont, an Accountable Care Organization (ACO) that includes all Vermont hospitals, Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, and a number of physician practices.
“OneCare Vermont is a way that the provider community in Vermont can have aligned incentives around trying to save on healthcare costs, and aligned incentives around quality and quality measures.”