Shawano Medical Center and ThedaCare Formalize Integration

January 12, 2011

Agreement Will Strengthen Local Health Care, Goes into Effect Jan. 30

The Shawano community can expect a wide range of healthcare benefits, as Shawano Medical Center (SMC), a non-profit community hospital in Shawano, will officially join ThedaCare on Jan. 30.

Last week ThedaCare’s board of trustees and this week SMC’s board of trustees approved the contract to integrate. The agreement was signed in Shawano today. The move benefits patients through access to more specialists in the community and a common electronic medical record between their primary care physician, specialists and the hospital, said Dean Gruner, MD, CEO and president of ThedaCare, a community-owned, Northeast Wisconsin not-for-profit health system.

“This is an exciting opportunity for Shawano area residents,” Dr. Gruner said. “We will now be able to work together even more on providing the best care possible to people living in the Shawano area.”

Last fall, SMC and ThedaCare signed a letter of intent to integrate after six months of discussion between the two organizations.

“The signing of the agreement is an important first of a process that over time will bring two vibrant organizations together,” said Dorothy Erdmann, SMC CEO. “We already have teams from both Shawano Medical Center and ThedaCare working together to make the transition as seamless as possible for our employees, and especially, for our patients.”

ThedaCare is investing $2.8 million to install its electronic medical records system (EMR) at SMC. When completed later this spring, the hospital’s operations will be integrated in real time with ThedaCare’s system-wide EMR, including ThedaCare Physicians-Shawano.

The integration provides access to more financial resources for the hospital as well as its foundation. The hospital’s 400 employees will now be covered by ThedaCare’s no-layoff philosophy and have the opportunity to participate in work using ThedaCare’s “Lean” methods.

Shawano Medical Center serves 35,000 people in Shawano, Menominee, and surrounding counties. Shawano Medical Center includes a critical-access (25-bed) hospital, the Riverside Clinic, Wellness Works, Sports Medicine, and Shawano Community Hospice.

ThedaCare (www.thedacare.org) is a community-owned health system consisting of Appleton Medical Center, Theda Clark Medical Center, New London Family Medical Center, Riverside Medical Center in Waupaca, ThedaCare Physicians, and other health care services. ThedaCare is the largest employer in Northeast Wisconsin with nearly 5,540 employees.

For more information, media may contact Megan Wilcox, APR (megan.wilcox@thedacare.org), corporate and public relations specialist for ThedaCare, at (920) 830-5847 or call the Theda Clark Medical Center switchboard at (920) 729-3100 and ask for the marketing person on call. Carol Ryczek, community relations manager for SMC, can be reached at (715) 526-7238, or cell (608) 628-9506 or cryczek@shawanomed.org.