The right care, at the right time, in the right place

July 13, 2021  //  FOUND IN: Strategy & Leadership,

Fulfilling the mission of advancing health to serve Michigan and the world requires that Michigan Medicine establish relationships with other hospitals and health systems.  

With those relationships in place, patients who want to receive the high quality care offered by Michigan Medicine providers do not always have to make a trip to Ann Arbor — in fact, patients can receive such care at multiple locations throughout the state and region. 

“These working relationships allow our Michigan Medicine providers to deliver a highly coordinated system of care, where Michigan Medicine can work with like-minded partners to the benefit of patients and families across Michigan,” said Rafina Khateeb, M.D., the associate medical director for Trinity affiliates.

A long history of affiliations

Did you know that Michigan Medicine’s partnerships across the state are not a new phenomenon? In fact, it’s been decades since family medicine physicians began practicing at Chelsea Hospital, just one of the organization’s services now offered in the community west of Ann Arbor.

Check out the timeline below to see the growing number of partnerships across the state:

For Michigan Medicine, these affiliations offer numerous benefits such as a coordinated pathway for patients needing more specialized care, increased bed capacity and better patient access. Such access also extends to reach underserved populations, which advances health equity.

For clinicians and researchers, these networks also allow for more quality collaboration, sharing of best practices and opportunity to expand their research.

Finally, it provides more locations for learners to gain hands-on experience and prepare themselves for their career ahead.  

Expanding access closer to Ann Arbor

Starting in 2013, MIchigan Medicine partnered with St. Joseph Mercy to expand Michigan Medicine’s inpatient capacity. St. Joseph’s Mercy Chelsea and Ann Arbor hospitals provide another location for Michigan Medicine physicians to deliver quality health care. 

Chelsea, a joint venture with 49% ownership by University of Michigan Health, offers select, specialized services which can be provided for patients and families at that location. 

Patients can experience easier access, in a compassionate healing environment, and the same excellent care provided by Michigan Medicine physicians. Michigan Medicine coordinates all transfers and provides seamless care at either of the St. Joseph Mercy locations. 

Improving the patient experience

The proof of these partnerships’ success can be found by speaking directly with the patients who have benefited.

For example, due to her chronic health condition, Georgina Ziegler often spends weeks as an inpatient at Michigan Medicine. During an emergency visit, she was offered the option to transfer her care to St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor. She shared her positive experience in this video. 

Desmond Cooper, meanwhile, received inpatient rehabilitation at the St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea Hospital after a stroke and aortic dissection. He recounted his experience with his long stay at Chelsea as a positive one that allowed him to return to his four children. 

Finally, after suffering for months with heart problems, Zelda Lucas came to Michigan Medicine and was admitted to the Chelsea Inpatient Heart Failure Service. She credited the team for improving her health and quality life. 

“Together with our partners, we hope to create a future where the residents of Michigan that we serve are the healthiest in the state and we come to be seen as an influential national model for integrated, cost-effective, and high-quality health care services,” said Khateeb. “That’s the goal of these partnerships and we will continue to look for opportunities to increase access in the months and years ahead.”

Khateeb recently appeared as a guest on The Wrap employee podcast. Click here to check it out.