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Broader Network for Patients Moves Forward

SEATTLE - KIRKLAND (Feb. 22, 2012) - EvergreenHealth and Virginia Mason Medical Center's boards announced today they have approved a strategic partnership agreement first announced last November. Through this partnership, Virginia Mason and EvergreenHealth will collaborate to provide patients with the highest quality, cost-effective health care.

The partnership will create both a broader network of care in the Puget Sound region and develop new models of care and innovation that will provide greater value to patients, employers and the communities served by both organizations. EvergreenHealth and Virginia Mason view the partnership as a unique means for both organizations to work together to improve quality and grow in ways that make clinical and economic sense without costly duplication of services.

The agreement calls for clinical collaborations and integration of care across a wide-range of specialties, beginning with cardiology and home care.

  • Cardiology Services: EvergreenHealth and Virginia Mason are partnering on primary, secondary and tertiary cardiac services. The two organizations are already working to finalize a framework for seamless integration that delivers coordinated, evidence-based care on the Eastside with the aim of providing the highest quality outcomes and best patient experience. Cardiologists from both organizations are developing best practice clinical protocols that will provide the best outcomes at a lower cost.
     
  • Home Care and Hospice: EvergreenHealth is the largest provider of home care and hospice services in the Puget Sound region with a national reputation for quality and service. Work is continuing to create seamless access to these services across the continuum of care for Virginia Mason patients.

Additional areas of clinical integration and collaboration will be identified over the coming months. EvergreenHealth and Virginia Mason Medical Center already utilize the same electronic medical record (EMR) system.

The partnership is not a merger and does not involve any transaction that affects the governance, management or financial independence of the two organizations. EvergreenHealth and Virginia Mason will remain two distinct entities. Neither organization foresees any reduction in services or staff as a result of this partnership.

In addition to the common vision and values shared by the organizations, each is nationally recognized for superior outcomes and committed to extraordinary service. Both EvergreenHealth and Virginia Mason were recognized by HealthGrades® with the 2012 Distinguished Hospital Award, a distinction given to the top 5 percent of hospitals in the nation for clinical performance.

EvergreenHealth was also recognized by HealthGrades as performing in the top 10 percent of hospitals in the nation for Outstanding Patient Experience, and Virginia Mason was named one of two Top Hospitals of the Decade by the Leapfrog Group in recognition of quality outcomes and effective use of resources for patients, as well as one of America's 100 Best Specialty Hospitals for cardiac and gastrointestinal services by HealthGrades. 

About Virginia Mason Medical Center 
Virginia Mason Medical Center, founded in 1920, is a nonprofit regional health care system in Seattle that serves the Pacific Northwest. Virginia Mason employs more than 5,300 people and includes a 336-bed acute-care hospital; a primary and specialty care group practice of more than 450 physicians; satellite locations throughout the Puget Sound area; and Bailey-Boushay House, the first skilled-nursing and outpatient chronic care management program in the U.S. designed and built specifically to meet the needs of people with HIV/AIDS. Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason is internationally recognized for its breakthrough autoimmune disease research. Virginia Mason was the first health system to apply lean manufacturing principles to health care delivery to eliminate waste and improve quality and patient safety. To learn more about Virginia Mason Medical Center, please visit VirginiaMason.org or Facebook.com/VMcares or follow @VirginiaMason on Twitter.

About EvergreenHealth
EvergreenHealth, a public hospital district and community-based health care organization established in 1972, offers a breadth of services and programs that is among the most comprehensive in the region. More than 950 physicians provide clinical excellence within more than 80 specialties, including general medicine, cardiac, oncology, surgical care, orthopedics and spine, a Neuroscience Institute, Women's and Children's services, hospice care, pulmonary care, a Sleep Disorders Center and Home Health services care.  EvergreenHealth serves more than 400,000 residents in its primary service area of northern King and southern Snohomish counties with community based physicians, Evergreen Medical Group, a network of primary and urgent care practices in seven locations, and 290-bed Evergreen Hospital Medical Center, its main hospital campus in Kirkland, Wash. EvergreenHealth also provides emergency care at two sites: its main hospital campus and the Evergreen Redmond Medical Center.  In addition to clinical care, EvergreenHealth offers extensive community health outreach and education programs, anchored by Evergreen Healthline, a 24/7 nurse consultation service. For more information, visit www.evergreenhealthcare.org, facebook.com/evergreenhospital.org or follow @EvergreenHosp on Twitter.

Contacts:

Ken LeBlond - Public Relations Manager
EvergreenHealth
kaleBlond@evergreenhealthcare.org
(425) 899-1886 | (206) 595-6608 (c)

Gale Robinette - Media Relations Manager
Virginia Mason Medical Center
gale.robinette@vmmc.org
(206) 341-1509 | (206) 402-2822 (c)

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