Adirondack Health's new vision for the Uihlein campus
June 4th, 2012
SARANAC LAKE - The Adirondack Health Board of Trustees is moving forward to design a new vision of health care services to be provided on the Uihlein Living Center campus in response to the evolving needs of the Tri-Lakes community.
The complete details are yet to be fully defined, however, one certainty is that family members can be confident the care and quality of life for current residents at the Living Center remains a top priority.
The vision for the integrated medical campus includes a full continuum of post-hospital care services, assisted living, a medical fitness center, right-sizing the skilled nursing beds gradually over time, and the relocation of hospital based and clinic services now located in Lake Placid to the Uihlein campus.
- A medical fitness center will provide a wide range of services to all age groups, including adult fitness programs, performance programs for athletes, senior programs, weight management and special populations programs.
- The Placid Memorial Hospital was constructed in 1952, and is not configured to provide 21st Century medicine. Creating a new facility on the Uihlein Campus would support the kind of primary and emergency care the community requires, and would generate operating efficiencies through shared services.
- Adirondack Health has already met with existing community based services and senior housing providers in order to develop a strong partnership. All of the potential stakeholders in this partnership are excited about the opportunity to establish a robust set of programs and relationships that will be needed to realize the vision.
Nationally, there has been a steady decline in the demand for long term care beds driven by a preference for in-home care and other community based services allowing people to "age in place." By 2020, the population of Essex County age 65 and older is projected to increase by approximately 16 percent. Adirondack Health must improve its ability to provide innovative services to meet the growing demand for health care services in our community over the next several years.
Adirondack Health experienced a $1.6 million shortfall in 2011, which is largely attributed to inadequate Medicaid reimbursements for its Living Centers in Lake Placid and Tupper Lake. Despite attempts address the reimbursement issues, there has been no action by the State to improve the rates and the current situation is unsustainable. The Board and leadership of Adirondack Health are committed to sound financial stewardship of the entire organization and want to be positioned to have available resources to invest in a variety of needed programs and services.
The Board recognizes the future of Adirondack Health requires a constant focus on service line improvements and other efficiencies to successfully continue its mission of providing comprehensive and compassionate health care services to the community. The changes at the Uihlein campus will better position Adirondack Health for future growth in response to community need.
"We are optimistic about the future course the board has set," remarked Chandler Ralph, President & CEO of Adirondack Health. "We understand that change is unsettling; positions will change and new positions will be created. We believe the new opportunities that will emerge from this important investment in the future will benefit the patients, residents, staff and community as we establish a stronger platform for the future growth of Adirondack Health."
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