May 26, 2018
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Parkview hospital is here to stay in Brunswick

By Mike Ortel and Dan Daggett, Special to the BDN

At Parkview Adventist Medical Center, we are proud of the quality of care we have offered Brunswick and the surrounding communities since 1959. For more than a decade, we have had a strong working relationship with Central Maine Healthcare that has supported our mission to help people get well and stay well.

We want to continue that relationship because we care about our patients and our communities. The Maine Department of Health and Human Services is reviewing Parkview’s plan to join CMHC.

Parkview, just like 12 other Maine community hospitals in the last 15 years, believes its future is best served by joining a health system. Working together with CMHC — every day for more than 10 years — has shown us the benefits: We are able to enhance quality, expand services and lower costs.

Unfortunately, Mid-Coast Hospital is fighting our plan to join CMHC. We have been barraged by attacks, innuendos and outright misstatements of fact. Time and time again, we have said no to Mid-Coast’s “consolidation of services plan,” which is simply Mid-Coast’s latest proposal to buy out and eliminate Parkview.

The leadership of Mid-Coast Hospital still refuses to take no for an answer.

Let’s be clear. Mid-Coast really wants Parkview to close, thereby eliminating healthcare choice in the Brunswick area. We cannot let this happen. Healthcare is a very personal decision. Our patients choose Parkview and Parkview providers for a reason — they love our hospital and the care we give them.

People are telling us they want and deserve to continue to receive their care at Parkview. Our staff is already spending time reassuring concerned patients that their ongoing care will not be compromised by this needless community upheaval.

Yet, Mid-Coast continually attempts to ignore these voices, limit their choices and dictate their decisions. At Parkview, we instead seek to build bridges, not put up walls, around our communities.

Choice, as we know, is very important to Mainers. CMHC helped to recruit primary care and specialist physicians to our community, bringing more choices while improving local

access to care.

CMHC also kept hospital choice available with improved quality and lower costs in the Bridgton and Rumford regions. And, it will help us to do the same in our area.

With a focus on exceptional quality, Parkview continues to make progress in lowering our costs. CMHC is the lowest-cost health system in Maine. We are actively engaged with CMHC in implementing initiatives that will help us achieve the distinction of becoming one of the lowest-cost hospitals in the entire state.

We care, too, about our Parkview employees who keep our facilities running day in and day out. Parkview provides well-paying jobs, and our hospital is an important part of the Brunswick economy.

Parkview’s core, faith-based values of caring and compassion strive to treat each individual as the unique person he or she is. CMHC encourages Parkview to continue on its faith-based path.

People are reaching out to us in an outpouring of support. We appreciate your encouragement as we move through the state’s review of our plan. Please know that we will continue to be there to serve our communities.

Parkview will not be sold to Mid-Coast. That decision is final. Parkview will not close. We will be a better hospital as part of the CMHC system.

We are proud of our past and look forward to a bright future of working with our CMHC colleagues. Parkview is committed to carrying on. Thank you, to our communities, for your tremendous support.

Mike Ortel is board chairman, and Dan Daggett is vice chairman, of Parkview Adventist Medical Center.

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