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Southcoast Health System and Boston Childrens Hospital announce new collaboration

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Improved access to pediatric care for children and families across the South Coast region

February 29, 2012

NEW BEDFORD, Mass. — Southcoast Health System and Boston Children’s Hospital today announced a new collaboration to provide enhanced local access to high-quality pediatric care to children and families across the South Coast region. Beginning in late summer 2012, Boston Children’s and its physicians will collaborate with local physicians to provide hospital-based pediatric services for Southcoast.

The pediatric program will be centered at St. Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford. Boston Children’s pediatricians will provide 24/7 onsite pediatric care working with local physicians in pediatrics, family medicine and emergency medicine. A Boston Children’s onsite Medical Director will be responsible for medical oversight, development and coordination of the Southcoast hospital-based pediatric care. Additionally, remote pediatric consultative services will be available to the Emergency Departments at Charlton Memorial Hospital in Fall River and Tobey Hospital in Wareham.

“We are excited to partner with Boston Children’s Hospital, one of the country’s top pediatric hospitals, to enhance pediatric inpatient and outpatient care available to families on the South Coast,” said Keith A. Hovan, President & CEO of Southcoast Health System and Southcoast Hospitals Group. “Our local physicians – pediatricians, primary care, family practice and emergency – have come together in support of this initiative and expressed overwhelming support for bringing innovative clinical care from Boston Children’s to Southcoast.”

“We are pleased that Southcoast selected Boston Children’s to help provide care to children and families across the South Coast region,” said Sandra Fenwick, President & COO of Boston Children’s Hospital. “This collaboration is an extension of Boston Children’s Community of Care where we work with community hospitals and physicians to provide high-quality community-based pediatric care closer to home in lower cost settings.”

To help enhance pediatric care locally, Boston Children’s will establish a variety of pediatric training and educational support programs for Southcoast physicians, nurses and ancillary departments. Together, Southcoast and Boston Children’s will implement and monitor clinical quality standards consistent with the American Academy of Pediatrics and Boston Children’s guidelines as well as other appropriate standards to deliver the highest quality of pediatric care.

“The affiliation with Boston Children’s Hospital will allow Southcoast to elevate and improve access to much needed pediatric services in the region,” said Steven Mendes, MD, who is a pediatrician with Wareham Pediatrics, Member of the Southcoast Boards of Trustees and President of the Medical Staff at Tobey Hospital. “A primary goal of the program is to assist Southcoast clinicians and community pediatricians with pediatric care so that families do not have to travel outside of the region and can continue to receive their care from their own trusted local physician.”

Southcoast, Boston Children’s and the region’s pediatricians and family practitioners will work to assess the need for pediatric specialty services. The assessment will inform the development of an overarching strategy to provide enhanced access to pediatric specialty services in the South Coast region.

Contact:
Stephanie Poyant
Southcoast Health System
Office: 508-961-5280
Cell: 774-634-1460
poyants@southcoast.org

Rob Graham
Boston Children's Hospital
617-919-3110
rob.graham@childrens.harvard.edu

About Southcoast Health System

Southcoast Health System is a community based health delivery system with multiple access points, offering an integrated continuum of health services throughout Southeastern Massachusetts and East Bay, Rhode Island. It includes the three hospitals that make up Southcoast Hospitals Group — Charlton Memorial Hospital in Fall River, St. Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford and Tobey Hospital in Wareham.

Southcoast provides advanced clinical services, such as open heart surgery, angioplasty and heart rhythm services, comprehensive cancer care, neurosurgery, weight loss surgery, orthopedic surgery, advanced imaging services and is the only provider of maternity services in the region. Southcoast is a not-for-profit charitable organization that depends on the support of the community to provide services. More information is available online at www.southcoast.org. Connect to Southcoast through social media at www.southcoast.org/connect/.

About Boston Children’s Hospital

Founded in 1869 as a 20-bed hospital for children, Boston Children’s Hospital has been ranked as one of the nation’s best pediatric hospitals by U.S. News & World Report for the past 21 years. Boston Children’s is the primary pediatric teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School and the largest provider of health care to Massachusetts children. In addition to 395 pediatric and adolescent inpatient beds and 228 outpatient programs, Boston Children’s houses the world’s largest research enterprise based at a pediatric medical center, where its discoveries benefit both children and adults. More than 1,100 scientists, including nine members of the National Academy of Sciences, 11 members of the Institute of Medicine and nine members of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute comprise Boston Children’s research community. For more information about the hospital visit: www.childrenshospital.org/newsroom.

The future of pediatrics will be forged by thinking differently, breaking paradigms and joining together in a shared vision of tackling the toughest challenges before us.”
- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO
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