Presence Health, Iroquois Memorial Hospital form partnership

WATSEKA — Iroquois Memorial Hospital has agreed to be managed by Presence Health, marking the first step in the partnership between the state's largest Catholic health system and the Watseka hospital.

Presence Health announced Monday that its board of directors and the IMH board signed an agreement for Presence Health to manage the hospital. Presence Health had announced in June that the two parties intended to form an affiliation.

"Partnering under this management agreement creates a strong and mutually beneficial presence in this region for both Presence Health and IMH," said Sandra Bruce, president and chief executive officer of Presence Health. "We are confident that this agreement is the beginning of a partnership between IMH and Presence Health that will strengthen over time."

Iroquois Memorial Hospital is a 49-bed hospital and 35-bed skilled nursing facility. The hospital also operates four primary care clinics in the surrounding area.

A news release from Presence Health said the management agreement will strengthen administrative support for the hospital in areas such as human resources, finance and information technology.

As part of the management agreement, the 300 hospital employees will continue under the employment of Iroquois Memorial Hospital and the hospital's key administrators will be under the leadership of Mike Brown, Presence Health's Central Region CEO.

Brown will lead the coordination of services between Iroquois Memorial and neighboring Presence Health hospitals — as well as Presence Medical Group, Presence Health's physician practice network and Presence Life Connections, the senior services arm of Presence Health — in the management of IMH resident, hospice and home health care.

"Our hospital has been seeking a partner to ensure continued access to high-quality health care for our patients and the communities we serve," said Chuck Bohlmann, chief executive officer of Iroquois Memorial Hospital. "This agreement not only strengthens our commitment to patient care but allows us to maintain jobs at our facility. Together, we will advance our shared focus on delivering the best patient, resident and family experience and providing high-quality care and value to all." {article submitted}

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