Straight Talk - "An historic day for southwest Florida and NCH Healthcare System"

August 16, 2012

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Today is an historic day for southwest Florida and NCH Healthcare System.

Today, we announce a clinically significant collaboration between Mayo Clinic, the most respected and recognized healthcare system in the world, and NCH Healthcare System. Mayo and NCH will be working together to bring a new comprehensive knowledge base and expertise to southwest Florida for patients, physicians and our community.

NCH thus becomes the first hospital in Florida and the seventh in the nation to be selected as a Mayo Clinic Care Network member, following a comprehensive evaluation process. The foundation for our collaboration is a shared philosophy: commitment and mission to improve the delivery of healthcare through the use of best practices and evidence-based medical care and treatment.

We are very fortunate to already have access to so many excellent physicians at the top of their field within the NCH Healthcare System. The primary goal of the Mayo Clinic Care Network is to extend the benefits of Mayo Clinic insight, knowledge, and expertise to these physicians and their patients, decreasing the need for patients to travel outside southwest Florida for treatment.

Our ultimate goal—and the most important reason for this affiliation with Mayo—is to help Floridians live longer, happier, healthier lives through access to the highest-level knowledge and expertise. Locally, only NCH physicians will have access to AskMayoExpert (AME), which delivers concise, Mayo-vetted medical knowledge to the point of care. This knowledge base will not only provide an educational resource to our physicians, but also assist in giving our medical staff the best patient-care advice. Additionally, NCH Healthcare Pulmonary/Critical Care and Naples Heart Institute physicians will have access to “eConsult,” a non-physical, electronic consultation between a Mayo Clinic specialist and a Mayo Clinic Care Network healthcare provider. These consultations will not add any cost to the patient, and that’s a win/win. With time, access to eConsult will be broadened to include additional exclusive NCH Medical Staff specialists.

“Through the network, we develop broader and stronger relationships with culturally like-minded organizations,” said Stephen Lange, M.D., Medical Director of the Mayo Clinic Care Network in Florida. “We are delighted to welcome NCH as the first Florida location.”

“Collaborating with other medical providers to provide the best possible care for patients has always been part of Mayo Clinic’s culture” added William C. Rupp, M.D., Chief Executive Officer of Mayo Clinic in Florida, “and the Mayo Clinic Care Network helps Mayo and community care organizations work closer together to enhance the lives of patients. We’re excited to formalize our relationship with NCH.”

The Mayo Clinic Care Network represents non-ownership relationships. Members are like-minded organizations that share a goal of improving the delivery of healthcare in their communities through high-quality, collaborative medical care. Launched last year, Mayo Clinic Care Network membership extends through Arizona, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Dakota—and now, Florida.

A new era in healthcare for patients, physicians and our community has begun in southwest Florida.


Allen S. Weiss, M.D., President and CEO

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