June 7, 2010 in City

Rockwood plans to merge surgery center into Deaconess

johnst@spokesman.com, (509) 459-5419
 

The Rockwood Clinic has unveiled plans to merge its outpatient surgery center and employees into Deaconess Medical Center.

The move will boost the number of outpatient surgeries at the hospital by more than 50 percent and becomes the most visible example of how Deaconess and Rockwood envision their new integrated care system under the common ownership of Community Health Systems Inc., said Dr. Kevin Sweeny, chief executive of Rockwood.

The move – which includes about 40 Rockwood staff and 20 surgeons – is the largest piece of the clinic’s hasty move from the Sacred Heart Doctors Building and medical campus.

It is part of a patchwork approach that scatters Rockwood’s services across the South Hill as the clinic continues to devise long-range plans that may one day centralize activities at or near Deaconess.

Rockwood announced that its cardiology center would leave its offices in the Providence Heart Institute and move into the old Group Health building near the busy intersection of Regal and 29th Avenue.

The clinic’s urology center is moving into offices at the main Rockwood Clinic; the digestive health center is moving into the former Spokane Eye Clinic building; and the clinic’s plastic surgery center and its obstetrics and gynecology practice is moving into the Deaconess Medical Office Building.

All the moves will be completed this month.

William Gilbert, the chief executive of Deaconess, said the moves have helped the quick bonding of the clinic and the hospital.

Patient numbers are climbing at Deaconess in the wake of its merger with Rockwood, according to Gilbert. The hospital is now contemplating reopening some of its unused patient rooms.


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