globe www.lakelandhealth.org/health-wellness/health-currents/health-current-archives/2018/fall-2018/message-from-the-president

Message from the President

Working Better Together

You may have heard the news by now. The Lakeland Health and Spectrum Health Boards of Directors have both approved a path to integration. This is big news for both organizations, as well as the communities we serve. It will be the biggest integration for Spectrum Health and the first of its kind for Lakeland. Our number one priority has always been to take great care of our friends and neighbors -- the integration with Spectrum Health will provide an unprecedented opportunity to do that even better.

Over the past decade, our Board has been deliberate about looking at where health care is going and what it takes to succeed. We’ve also drawn from our past integration experience, starting with Mercy Hospital in Benton Harbor, continuing through Pawating Hospital in Niles and Berrien General Hospital in Berrien Springs, and most recently, Watervliet Community Hospital. We have also integrated with a number of physician practices in our community, beginning with Southwestern Medical Clinic.

So why are Lakeland and Spectrum Health on a path to integration?

The answer is simple. Value. We are committed to do everything we can to improve the health of our community, improve the health care we deliver, provide that care at the lowest cost possible, and to make our organizations great places to work.

Our two organizations recognize we can do that work better by doing it together. There are many ways we can learn from each other to help achieve these goals. Spectrum Health’s top tier performance, geographic proximity, and cultural similarity will make this a great partnership.

Over the past few months I’ve spent time talking with government leaders, business owners, and countless other members of our community. They seem to all have one thing in common – their initial reaction to this change has been overwhelmingly positive.

While we are only in the beginning phases of this exciting new face of health care in West Michigan, we are committed to keep you well informed along the way and to ensure Lakeland remains a health system dedicated to providing the quality, compassionate care you’ve come to know and trust. `

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