Healthcare continues to rapidly evolve as a discipline on a global scale, and providers of health care are transforming themselves to become more patient-centric, community conscious and service focused. In Northeast Florida, the healthcare industry is not only expanding deeper into communities to ensure everyone has access to the highest quality of care, but they’re also putting down roots in a way not seen among big businesses before and providing savvy consumers with more options.
Across the Spectrum: A Model for Patient Care
The Baptist Health of Northeast Florida healthcare system already carries a reputation for quality care.
Recognized as a model patient care environment and receiving the highest marks for patient safety, accolades include Baptist Health being named one of the ‘World’s Best Hospitals 2021’ by Newsweek and recognition as a ‘High Performing Hospital 2021’ by U.S. News & World Report.
It’s even a great place to work. Baptist Health of Northeast Florida was named one of Forbes’ best employers in the state in September 2021.
Integrating the latest technology advances, Baptist Health of Northeast Florida has placed a premium on a full continuum of care for their 2.7 million patients each year with a Patient 360 mentality according to Lauren Root, CRM and digital engagement consultant for Baptist Health.
During the pandemic, Baptist Health implemented the Enhanced Home Support Model to assist patients recovering from COVID and introduced the HealthPlace on Demand app to provide 24/7 urgent care access to board-certified health care providers. The healthcare system also increased access to mental health services through their 24/7 Kids and Teens Helpline and Textline and telehealth services. Officials say Baptist Behavioral Health providers are now seeing 80% of their patients via video chat.
“Care does not begin when a patient walks through the door and it doesn’t end when they leave. We aim to be there for patients across pre-care, point of care, post-care and between episodes of care,” said Root.
By marrying important electronic medical record data points with a myriad of touchpoints that are captured in other parts of the organization into a single source, Baptist Health aims to deliver a more personalized experience at every step of a patient’s journey.
This connectivity provides seamless care across an expanding network of six hospitals, three campuses and more than a dozen providers and partners in Northeast Florida, set to include a $200 million full-service hospital in Clay County in fall 2022 and the Borowy Family Children’s Critical Care Tower in January 2022 on the Baptist Jacksonville/Wolfson Children’s Hospital campus downtown.
“When patients think about Baptist Health, we want them to think ‘you know me’,” she said.
Rebranding from Within: From Facility to Enterprise
A rebrand in 2019 from Flagler Hospital to Flagler Health+ has been an opportunity for the St. Johns County-based hospital to expand its footprint in Northeast Florida and offer more health care options to patients.
Flagler Health+ has made a point to focus on delivering value to their patients while investing in the communities in which they serve.
Expansion into Flagler County’s health care market includes a thriving orthopedic practice and a primary care facility. A specialty care office serves as the temporary hub for the Care Connect+ program, linking area residents in need with available services throughout Northeast Florida until the seven-acre Flagler Health+ Village at Palm Coast is completed. Flagler Health+ is currently under contract to develop a state-of-the-art, inpatient hospital on 71 acres at the intersection of US-1 and Palm Coast Parkway.
“It’s a reflection of our transformation from a hospital to a total care enterprise that advances the physical, social and economic health of the communities we serve. It is these three pillars that make Flagler Health+ so unique. It’s about being a true healthcare partner on life’s journey, providing innovative care in new places and new ways, while reducing costs along the way,” said Gina Magnus, Vice President of Advancement & Strategy for Flagler Health+.
Looking to the Future
In addition to population growth, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts a 16% growth in the health care field between 2020 and 2030.
Healthcare systems like AdventHealth, which underwent a national rebranding of their 50 hospitals and hundreds of care sites across nine states in 2019, are preparing to address consumer demand and workforce challenges head-on according to AdventHealth Palm Coast CEO Dr. Ron Jimenez.
The need for high quality, accessible health care has led to AdventHealth Palm Coast’s expansion in the Flagler County market with what Jimenez calls “the single-largest health care investment ever made in Flagler County” with the addition of a second location, the 100-bed AdventHealth Palm Coast Parkway facility set for completion in 2023.
“We want people to know that we have the scale and expertise within our system to provide world-class care, whatever they may need,” he said.
AdventHealth Palm Coast has also engaged in a unique partnership through UNF MedNexus to prepare for the future needs of the healthcare industry.
“As our nation ages, the need for skilled nurses and other clinical practitioners will rise dramatically,” said Jimenez.
“We are focused on developing the workforce of tomorrow. The MedNexus project helps us do that, in collaboration with Flagler County Schools, Daytona State College, the University of North Florida and the city of Palm Coast. We want to encourage, support and provide a career pipeline for students interested in a health care career by educating and training these future caregivers in fields such as nursing, nutrition and rehab,” he said.
As part of the nation’s largest healthcare provider HCA Healthcare, Orange Park Medical Center is also expanding its facilities, opening a new patient tower in 2021. Announcing plans to add two 24-patient bed floors, a new ICU and a freestanding emergency room, and breaking ground on a new medical office building, OPMC is also engaged in training the health care workforce of tomorrow as the nation’s leading provider of graduate medical education.
With over 130,000 patients served in 2020, including the treatment of over 100,000 emergency room patients, nearly 700 stroke and neurovascular patients, and delivering close to 2,000 babies, the expansion of resources and trained medical personnel is warranted, according to Carrie Turansky, communications director for Orange Park Medical Center.
“Orange Park Medical Center has 10 residency and fellowship programs that are led by an accomplished faculty, set under rigorous standards and tailored to provide extensive training for the next generation of physician leaders.”