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​WMHS and UPMC Finalize Agreement for Clinical Affiliation

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Susan Manko
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CUMBERLAND, Md., Feb. 12, 2018 – The definitive agreement for the clinical affiliation between Western Maryland Health System and UPMC (University of Pittsburgh Medical Center) was signed last week by officials from each health system.  The agreement was approved by the WMHS Board of Directors on January 18, 2018, formalizing plans for the two health systems to work cooperatively to enhance healthcare services for local residents.

The WMHS Board of Directors made the decision this time last year to pursue negotiations with UPMC, one of nation’s largest provider-led integrated delivery and finance systems, as well as a nationally ranked academic center.

“This partnership with a world-class healthcare system brings tremendous value to WMHS and our community, “ explains Barry Ronan, WMHS President and CEO. “It enables us to build upon our success in providing value-based care and positions us to become recognized as the best place to deliver quality care, transform care delivery, and reduce the total cost of providing care.”

In conjunction with developing the definitive agreement, both organizations have already been working together to ensure that residents in our region have local access to the broadest range of quality healthcare services possible.

One of the first initiatives underway is providing greater local access to physician specialists and sub-specialists to complement the existing clinical programs at WMHS, including cardiovascular and neuroscience programs.

“We are already working cooperatively with UPMC, UPMC Altoona and other UPMC hospitals on plans to share physician coverage in these specialty areas that will meet the needs at our respective hospitals,” continues Ronan.

Other discussions underway relate to developing  collaborative programs and agreements for telemedicine, oncology, and behavioral health, specialties for which UPMC is internationally recognized for its expertise, and placing family practice residents from UPMC on the WMHS campus. 

“With our shared vision to enhance and extend world-class clinical care and community services close to home for patients and their families, UPMC is looking forward to successful collaboration with WMHS well into the future,” said Leslie Davis, senior vice president of UPMC, and executive vice president and chief operating officer of UPMC’s Health Services Division.