Allentown News

Published on March 22nd, 2017

Richard A. Anderson: St. Luke’s Continues Commitment to Region in Number of Ways

At St. Luke’s University Health Network, we have been actively growing new services and enhancing existing services, benefitng our patients and their families. As one of the largest employers in the region, St. Luke’s has 10,000 employees plus their families from the Lehigh Valley and surrounding areas. Our health system is heavily invested in the health and well-being of our community. Our employee population alone is the size of one of our Lehigh Valley communities.

It is no exaggeration to say that the more successful St. Luke’s is, the more successful the Lehigh Valley will become. Unarguably, St. Luke’s is a major economic engine to the region’s economy.

St. Luke’s is comprised of the only major teaching hospital in the region, seven hospitals and over 200 outpatient facilities. Our unwavering commitment to providing our patients with the best care possible, inspires to continually advance medical practice and technologies through quality research and innovation and has gained St. Luke’s a national recognition for low-cost, quality and innovation and in turn has contributed to shining a light on the Lehigh Valley.

We remain committed to expanding easy access to care across our region by celebrating the fifth year anniversary of our Anderson Campus in Bethlehem Township. When it was built, it was the first non-replacement full-service hospital built in Pennsylvania in 40 years. This state-of-the-art health care campus continues to expand, offering employment to people at all levels of the health care spectrum.

Recently, we celebrated the grand opening of the Monroe Campus — our seventh hospital and the first acute-care, non-replacement hospital in Monroe County in 100 years. This 180,000-square-foot facility includes beds for critical care patients, a state-of-the-art emergency room, a helipad, state-of-the-art operating rooms, a cardiac catheterization lab and the most modern diagnostic technology. Since groundbreaking, this hospital has employed hundreds of local workers in the building trades and related industries. And we are proud to say we used steel manufactured in the United States. A new medical office building is also under construction and slated for a summer 2017 opening.

We also embarked on ways to become more cost and operationally efficient by combining numerous office functions and by relocating these services and over 1,000 employees into the long-empty former Agere headquarters, adjacent to Coca-Cola Park. St. Luke’s Center, as it is now called, houses numerous administrative functions at far less cost.

Our deliberate investment in technology is another key factor in our growth and stability. We recognize that patients demand flexibility, not just access to brick-and-mortar facilities. We have adapted our services by investing in and introducing new technology. We continue to be agile, engaging in an innovative fashion for access and care through our CareAnywhere virtual visits, extended physician office hours and online appointment scheduling.

Technology-wise, St. Luke’s continues to be the gold standard with the installation of our inpatient EPIC electronic medical record — one of the most successful implementations in our nation, according to officials from EPIC.

St. Luke’s also continues its long-standing commitment to the region by educating the future generation of physicians and nurses. We are proud to partner with Temple University to have the only school of medicine in the greater Lehigh Valley and to continue to operate, since 1884, the nation’s oldest school of nursing. St. Luke’s offers residencies and fellowships to 186 men and women in a variety of specialties, allowing them to learn alongside our staff. We are also an active provider of continuing medical education for physicians and other health care professionals in the Lehigh Valley, offering more than 500 post-graduate programs annually.

As always, low cost, price transparency and quality continue to be important pillars to our continued growth and success. Through St. Luke’s PriceChecker website, patients can proactively access understandable pricing options to allow them to make informed health care decisions. We believe we are the first full-service hospital system in the nation to offer this type of price transparency.

Consistent quality is unarguably the cornerstone of our success. For the third consecutive year, St. Luke’s was recognized as a 100 Top Hospital in the country by Truven Health Analytics in the major teaching hospital category. And, for the first time, our Quakertown Campus was recognized as a 100 Top Hospital in the Small Community Hospital category for 2016. Additionally, we were recognized with a four-star rating from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services , a Consumer Reports award and a number of other quality awards.

St. Luke’s continues to grow and prosper. The future is very bright and our best days are in front of us. We will continue to establish new services and expand the depth and breadth of our services and ensure that our network meets the needs of current and future patients.

Copyright ©2017, Lehigh Valley Business Cycle

Original article from The Morning Call.

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