In an effort to keep everyone informed as to the progress that we are making in our discussions and negotiations with UPMC on our clinical affiliation, let me offer the following:
The discussions for a clinical affiliation with UPMC are progressing well. The next step is finalizing the letter of intent, which summarizes the contractual agreement between WMHS and UPMC. We anticipate that this letter should be signed in the next few weeks. Once the letter of intent is signed, we will negotiate the definitive agreement, which specifies the details for the clinical affiliation between WMHS and UPMC.
The following areas have been identified as part of the first phase of the clinical affiliation: vascular surgery, thoracic surgery, cardiac surgery, neurosurgery, medical oncology, and behavioral health. We have established clinical services work groups for these areas, and we are in the process of identifying dates for a series of site visits by UPMC’s clinical leadership in theses areas.
Kim Repac, WMHS CFO, is in Pittsburgh today giving a presentation to UPMC leadership and staff on the Maryland Rate Regulation System. Since our affiliation is their first in Maryland, they would like to have a better understanding of our rate system and our current payment model.
UPMC leadership will be presenting at the WMHS board meeting in April as to their plans for our affiliation and also will provide an update on other affiliation activity currently underway within their system.
Last Friday, I had the opportunity to meet and spend some time with six hospital CEOs from throughout Pennsylvania whose hospitals all have a clinical affiliation with UPMC in some form. To a person, they were exceedingly complimentary of UPMC and how they are delivering what they say that they will provide in each of their relationships.
All in all, the process continues to proceed very well. I am very much encouraged by our continued interaction and their commitment to WMHS.