On Tuesday, Jan. 2, the Redwood Falls City Council approved a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that would allow discussions to take place between the city of Redwood Falls, Redwood Area Hospital and CentraCare Health in order to explore a potential affiliation.
“Health care is changing at a dramatic pace,” explained Bryan Lydick, Redwood Area Hospital CEO. “It’s only prudent to look at partnering with organizations that can enhance health care delivery for our community now and in the future.”
The MOU is a formal agreement that organizations use to outline a proposed affiliation process and typically involves a range of options and issues for all parties to explore.
“There are many details to consider,” explains Keith Muetzel, Redwood Falls City Administrator. “The goal right now is to lay out all viable scenarios so we can ensure strong, sustainable health care for people in Redwood Falls and the surrounding area.”
As part of the MOA, both Redwood Area Hospital and CentraCare have expressed that collaboration would likely ensure the delivery of coordinated, high-quality medical care through the implementation of a common electronic health record as well as care that is delivered locally whenever possible with access to specialists throughout a larger network when necessary.
“By collaborating, Redwood Area Hospital will be better positioned to preserve the long-standing legacy of community-based care,” said Lydick. “Through our initial discussions, I feel confident we have a shared commitment to rural healthcare and a forward-thinking approach to lead on quality, safety, and care close to home.”
The next step will be for the three parties to negotiate a letter of intent by March 15.