Proctor selling primary care services, clinics to OSF
NICK SCHNELLE/JOURNAL STAR
Proctor First Care at 1120 East War Memorial Drive.
Peoria’s smallest hospital will get smaller and its largest hospital will get larger when Proctor Hospital sells its primary care physician practices, five Proctor First Care Centers and three primary care physician offices to OSF Healthcare Systems.
Proctor Hospital officials announced the pending sale Tuesday, noting the hospital no longer had the resources to maintain primary care services.
Proctor CEO Paul Macek said details, including the amount of the sale and the time line, still are being negotiated. But the sale will give the hospital a much-needed cash infusion during challenging economic times, he said, and save “several hundred thousand dollars a year” in the costs of underwriting primary care physicians.
The 223-bed hospital also is exploring a variety of different models to strengthen its relationship with OSF Healthcare, Macek said.
“It’s no secret independent community hospitals are experiencing revenue declines,” he said.
Proctor experienced operating losses in 2012 and Macek expects losses to continue, given federal budget cuts and the constraints of health care reform.
Moody’s Investor Service has reported Proctor’s total revenues were $123 million in 2011, down from $125 million in 2010.
The sale to OSF Healthcare includes Proctor Medical Equipment and 17 physicians’ practices that serve 30,000 to 35,000 patients.
Macek, Dennis Triggs, chairman of Proctor’s board, and Dr. Timothy Pflederer, immediate past president of the medical staff, emphasized patients and the approximately 117 employees affected by the sale would see a smooth transition to OSF Healthcare, with no job losses.
“Patients will continue to be able to see the doctors they’ve chosen,” Pflederer said. “And this allows us to continue to focus on Proctor’s role in the community.”
Macek added that patients still will have the option to come to Proctor. “We expect to continue to see them.”
Dr. Gerald McShane, CEO of OSF Medical Group, said the decision to add more doctors to its medical group — which currently includes 64 primary care physicians in the Tri-County Area — was based more on what’s best for patients than business.
McShane said Proctor approached OSF Healthcare, asking for help in preserving primary care services. Like Proctor officials, OSF Healthcare did not want to see patients’ relationships with their doctors disrupted, McShane said.
“If something were to happen and those relationships were to deteriorate, there would be chaos,” he said.
What remains to be seen is what kind of hospital Proctor will become, not only in Peoria’s highly competitive hospital market but nationally as the health care system reinvents itself to produce better outcomes with less money.
“Trying to be all things to all people just isn’t feasible in this environment,” Macek said.
The board began discussing its future role in the community about 18 months ago. Discussions are continuing.
The hospital will continue to operate Illinois Addictions Recovery Center and Hult Education Center.
Proctor’s announcement comes just about three weeks after Methodist Medical Center, the city’s second largest hospital, filed an antitrust lawsuit alleging OSF Healthcare has engaged in practices that limit competition and consumers’ choices, drive up costs and reduce quality.
Board members approved the sale unanimously Tuesday afternoon and Proctor’s 1,100 employees were informed Tuesday night.
Pam Adams can be reached at 686-3245 or email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @padamspam.