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Takoma Regional Hospital officially part of Wellmont, dramatic improvements under way
GREENEVILLE – The sign out front serves notice that a new era has officially dawned: Greeneville’s community hospital is now Takoma Regional Hospital.

Dramatic improvements resulting from Takoma’s partnership with Wellmont Health System have been under way for weeks, as Wellmont has infused its newest partner with a wealth of enhancements to refine the patient experience and, most importantly, improve patient outcomes. Advances in medical equipment technology, enhancements to the facility, a definitive emphasis on patient safety, significant growth in cardiology services and increased availability of physician specialists are making Takoma Regional Hospital the healthcare choice for Greene County and the surrounding area.

Wellmont Health System and Adventist Health System reached an agreement in December to share ownership of what was formerly known as Takoma Adventist Hospital, and Adventist’s transfer of ownership to a new, not-for-profit corporation – with Wellmont serving as majority owner – takes effect on Tuesday.

“We are very pleased to partner with Wellmont, a regional leader, because we share the same Christian vision of providing compassionate, superior health care for all those lives we touch,” said Carlyle Walton, Takoma’s president and chief executive officer. “The affiliation will allow us to deliver even stronger and more efficient patient care to our community. We will become a greater community asset.”

In fact, Takoma Regional Hospital is already a greater community asset through its partnership with the region’s preferred healthcare provider. Among the changes that have benefited patients at the 108-bed hospital are:

• Takoma has adopted Wellmont’s safest hospitals initiative, a charge by Dr. Richard Salluzzo, president and CEO of Wellmont, to make Wellmont hospitals the safest in America. By sharing in Wellmont’s performance improvement strategies, Takoma has joined in Dr. Salluzzo’s vision to establish a national blueprint for the nation’s safest hospitals. An adoption of Wellmont’s critical metrics in key areas, as well as shared strategies on how to meet those measures, have provided Takoma specific ways to strive for error-free patient care.

• Cardiovascular Associates, Wellmont’s partner in the Regional Heartcare Network, has opened an office at Takoma and board-certified cardiologists with CVA have been seeing patients and performing hospital consults there for several weeks. Dr. Herb Ladley, president of Cardiovascular Associates, has already personally logged many hours at Takoma.

• Medical/surgical services have expanded at Takoma, including cross coverage of orthopedic services with a sister Wellmont facility, Hawkins County Memorial Hospital, and hospitalist services with Holston Medical Group, a Wellmont partner. A targeted physician recruiting campaign is under way for Takoma based on a physician needs assessment, and the transition of existing Takoma physicians into Wellmont Physician Services has increased the availability of specialty services to patients.

• Several capital improvements have already been made to Takoma, among them updates to the operating room and the addition of cutting-edge equipment for a nuclear medicine program.

• The strength of being a Wellmont partner has also meant cost savings at Takoma through group purchasing and an expansion of managed-care contracting.

The new partnership will not affect any scheduled patient appointments, surgeries, community health events or classes. But through its partnership with Wellmont, patients can expect change at Takoma – change for the better.

“Takoma Regional is a strong community hospital that will now be backed by all the resources of the region’s largest healthcare system,” Dr. Salluzzo said. “We look forward to working with the physicians and employees of Takoma to improve health care for the people of Greene County.”

Patients with questions may call Takoma at (423) 639-3151.