Earlier this week, Scripps Health marked an important milestone. For the first time in our 125-year history, we entered into a formal relationship with a health system outside our home base of San Diego County.
Representatives from Scripps joined our colleagues from Pioneers Memorial Healthcare District in Brawley, Calif., in Imperial County, to announce the signing of the affiliation agreement.
Under the two-year agreement, Scripps will provide enhanced leadership training and development, process improvements and other related services to Pioneers.
The dynamics driving this relationship are no mystery. We are experiencing some of the most radical changes in the history of health care. To succeed, every hospital and health system must find ways to deliver more value to patients.
Scripps has worked hard to enhance the quality of care we deliver to patients while reducing costs. Over the past few years, we have implemented new processes and put in place new management structures that are helping us to succeed. We have reduced costs by $340 million through 2014 and are consistently ranked nationally for our quality. We are finding ways to reduce variation and eliminate waste. We also are increasing our focus on patient wellness and population health.
We have been interested in sharing the lessons we’ve learned with other health care organizations. This new agreement with Pioneers provides that opportunity.
But it would be a mistake to see this as a one-sided relationship. Smaller health care organizations, by their nature, must find ways to operate in smart and efficient ways. We fully expect to learn many lessons from the leaders and medical staff at Pioneers.
Scripps and Pioneers have much in common. We both have a long history of serving our communities. In fact, Pioneers is marking its 65th anniversary this year. There also are already existing relationships between our medical staffs. We’ve appreciated the patient care that has been shared between our organizations in the past.
I am very proud that Scripps has joined Pioneers in this affiliation. I look forward to building this relationship and growing the affiliation over many years to come.