Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Breaking News

Local News

January 30, 2013

Hospital expanding service area

Community Howard working on regional plan

Six months into the integration with the Community Health Network, Community Howard Regional Health is working on a plan to become more of a regional health center.

Community Health and Howard Regional merged last July with the process expected to be completed by the end of the year. One of the key components of the merger was the commitment from Community Health to continue providing critical services in Kokomo and to expand the service area to the surrounding counties.

Jim Alender, CEO of Community Howard Regional, said the hospital is working with a firm in Chicago to define the needs of the region in terms of demographics and access to primary care needs.

A plan to make Community Howard a regional medical center for the five adjacent counties is expected to be presented to the board of directors at Community Health and Community Howard in February, he said.

“A time line will be presented to the two boards,” Alender said. “We’re starting to transform to a regional medical facility and working on that plan. We want to see what the medical needs are and how it can be augmented as a part of our health care network.”

Alender said when Howard Regional started looking for a partner it wanted to continue to provide primary and urgent care services in Kokomo and not just stabilize patients and transport them to Indianapolis.

As part of the regional health care network, Community Howard is increasing the cardiology program and working to be accredited through MD Anderson as an oncology center.

“It will be a real plus for Howard, but a real win for people in this region,” Alender said. “We will be affiliated with the finest oncology center in the U.S.”

Community Howard is starting the process of looking where to place urgent care centers in the region as part of health care reform and lowered costs, he said.

Alender said the hospital has a plan to expand those outreach services starting this year and extending through 2015.

“We have not seen an increase of patients from surrounding counties ... we look for it to grow,” he said. “77 percent of our patients come from Howard County. We want to work with facilities in the surrounding counties to provide primary care and specialty services.”

Alender said Community Howard wants to partner with hospital in Tipton, Peru and Logansport to provide services for unmet needs in the region.

Since the July 1 integration, Alender said managed care and supply chain management has been transferred to Community Health. He said employees in Kokomo are now employed by Community Health.

He said there is improved employee benefits while at the same time managing costs.

Alender said as promised there has been no reduction in staffing levels at Community Howard. He said there are currently an estimated 1,300 employees with 59 positions open. At the time of the integration the hospital employed approximately 1,200 people.

“We have integrated as far as we can in terms of employees and processes at this point in time,” Alender said. “We are aggressively moved through the integration process. The strategy is going to be high quality health care at a lower cost and growth for Community Howard.”

Alender said there is a standardization of processes taking place between the network and the local hospital.

“I have been very pleased by the level of joint cooperation in working towards a mutually beneficial goal,” Bryan Mills, CEO of Community Health Network, said. “We’ve identified many opportunities for both expansion of Community Howard Regional’s mission, in North Central Indiana, and achievement of operational efficiencies.”

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • BK rebuild 04 Peru restaurant B-K West rebuilding after tornado

    PERU -- B-K West is more than just a drive-in restaurant to its owner, J.D. Hann. It's a piece of his childhood, a historic Peru landmark, and it's his baby. "I grew up with this place," the 57-year-old Peru native said. "We used to walk the tracks o

    April 16, 2014 7 Photos

  • Congresswoman Susan Brooks backs manufacturing training efforts Congresswoman Susan Brooks' own personal manufacturing experience may have been limited to three months in a Kendallville caramel factory as a college student, but in her congressional roles, she's having an impact on the skills debate. In Kokomo Tue

    April 16, 2014

  • Superintendent of Ind Ed 01 State Superintendent Glenda Ritz visits Peru, discusses new standards

    PERU -- State Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz said Tuesday she is comfortable with the quick pace at which new academic standards are moving from concept to classroom. The Indiana Department of Education released a final draft of new

    April 16, 2014 4 Photos

  • Chrysler CEO will headline Tipton plant opening Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne will preside over the grand opening of the company's fifth north central Indiana plant, the Tipton Transmission Plant, at a ceremony May 13, company officials announced Tuesday. In February 2013, Chrysler announced it w

    April 16, 2014

  • More than 70 businesses participate in annual job fair More than 70 local businesses got a look at the workforce of tomorrow during Tuesday's Kokomo Area Job Fair at the Ivy Tech Kokomo Event & Conference Center. The event, put on as a partnership between Indiana University Kokomo and Ivy Tech Community

    April 16, 2014

  • Kokomo episode of 'My First Home' airs Saturday A cautious cat-lover will search for the perfect house in Kokomo on Saturday's episode of "My First Home" on TLC. The episode airs at noon and features Kokomo real estate agent Gena Martin and first-time homebuyer Steven Underwood. In its description

    April 16, 2014

  • Easter basket workshop Thursday Generous individuals and businesses in town donated enough candy, games and books to fill more than 500 Easter baskets at this year's Tom Carey Easter Basket Workshop. The workshop starts at 10 a.m. Thursday. Any families that are strapped for cash t

    April 16, 2014

  • IUK to give Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne honorary degree Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne will be at Indiana University Kokomo’s May 13 commencement to accept an honorary degree from Indiana University President Michael McRobbie, IUK officials announced. In a statement, McRobbie credited Marchionne with engi

    April 15, 2014

  • Cheryl Marner aims to cross finish line during this year's Boston Marathon Cheryl Marner was a mile from the finish line at last year's Boston Marathon when all of the runners in front of her suddenly stopped. The race had come to a halt, and at the time, she didn't know why. "There was a lot of confusion," she said. "I hea

    April 15, 2014

  • Property taxes to increase Many of the residents in Howard County can expect an increase in their property taxes when bills are mailed out later this week. Tax rate increases, a smaller homestead tax credit collection from the state and a decrease in the county's overall net a

    April 15, 2014

Latest news
Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Raw: Ferry Sinks Off South Korean Coast Town, Victims Remember Texas Blast Freeze Leaves Florida Panhandle With Dead Trees At Boston Marathon, a Chance to Finally Finish Are School Dress Codes Too Strict? Raw: Fatal Ferry Boat Accident Suspicious Bags Found Near Marathon Finish Line Boston Marks the 1st Anniversary of Bombing NYPD Ends Muslim Surveillance Program 8-year-old Boy Gets His Wish: Fly Like Iron Man Sex Offenders Arrested in Slayings of CA Women India's Transgenders Celebrate Historic Ruling Tributes Mark Boston Bombing Anniversary Raw: Kan. Shooting Suspect Faces Judge
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries