Uncategorized

Live Oak Health and Housing Campus Moves Closer to Reality

Posted on Mar 6, 2020 in Carousel, Community Benefit, Expanding Access, Scroll Images, Sutter Maternity and Surgery Center, Santa Cruz, Uncategorized, Wellness

Courtesy of Santa Cruz Community Health and Dientes Community Dental Care.

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. — Santa Cruz Community Health (SCCH) and Dientes Community Dental Care (Dientes), today announced a $1 million dollar investment from Sutter Health to support the construction and operation of a 19,000-square-foot medical clinic to be run by SCCH and 11,000-square-foot dental clinic to be run by Dientes on the future site of a health and housing campus that will benefit the Live Oak community.

Rendering of the Santa Cruz Community Health medical clinic.

An Investment in Infrastructure

The future site of the health and housing campus is the ideal location for much-needed services. Supervisor John Leopold notes, “Five years ago there were no medical offices in Live Oak. A community of our size needs good access to medical and dental services and housing that is affordable to all families. This new development will help everyone in the community from small children to families to seniors.” The campus – the first of its kind in Santa Cruz County – will integrate the strengths and services of its three owners:

  • SCCH has been serving the medical and mental health needs of underserved Santa Cruz County residents since 1980, with a special focus on families.
  • Dientes has an over 25-year track record of providing affordable, high-quality and comprehensive dental care through three existing clinics and an outreach program.
  • MidPen Housing, already owns and manages 13 affordable housing communities in Santa Cruz County, providing residents with supportive services.

“Planning for this project started in 2017, and I’m so pleased we are starting to secure large contributions that will make construction possible,” said Dientes CEO Laura Marcus. “Sutter Health has a proven track record of improving the health in this region, so it was no surprise that the not-for-profit system that includes Palo Alto Medical Foundation stepped up to help. This is truly a remarkable demonstration of how we can collaborate for the overall good of our community.”

Sutter Health has committed $1 million dollars, over five years, to the construction and operation of both clinics on the campus. SCCH will receive $160,000 and Dientes will receive $40,000 each year through 2023.

“As a not-for-profit health network, Sutter focuses on improving the health of those inside and outside the walls of our hospitals and care centers,” said Stephen Gray, chief administrative officer for Sutter Maternity & Surgery Center of Santa Cruz and operations executive of Palo Alto Medical Foundation Santa Cruz. “We know that when people have access to preventive screening and routine healthcare, their health improves. This investment builds on Sutter’s commitment to improve the health of the entire community we serve.”

Rendering of the Dientes Community Dental Care dental clinic.

Capital Campaign is Ongoing

“Projects like this one can transform communities. This initiative will bring affordable healthcare and housing to the heart of Live Oak – providing a lifeline to families, adults and seniors,” said SCCH CEO Leslie Conner. “We hope the early funding we’ve secured will be a catalyst for more donations in the coming weeks and months.”

The integrated, state-of-the-art health and housing campus will address a triple-goal of increasing access to healthcare, growing affordable housing, and creating economic opportunity. The project will provide health services to 10,000 patients annually and affordable housing for 57 households. In addition, it will create more than 60 new jobs.

Dientes and Santa Cruz Community Health will break ground on their clinic in 2020 and open in 2021. MidPen will break ground on the housing component in 2021 and open in 2022.

Renderings, photos and more information about the project is available here

Sutter Health Announces 2019 Financial Performance

Posted on Mar 5, 2020 in Uncategorized

SACRAMENTO, Calif.—Integrated healthcare delivery system Sutter Health has announced its financial performance for 2019. Investment income helped offset the losses associated with operations as the organization ended the year with $114 million in 2019 income. The UFCW/California Attorney General settlement and related litigation expenses, one-time capital costs associated with the opening of the Van Ness Campus in San Francisco, and costs associated with the wildfires and public safety power shutoffs contributed to operating losses of $548 million. Sutter Health posted $737 million in investment income and changes in net unrealized gains and losses from investments in 2019, compared to $(267) million the prior year.

Community-Based Investments to Improve Access to Healthcare
The shift in overall performance between 2018 and 2019 was primarily due to the recovery in the investment market. Overall, Sutter implements a long-term investment strategy, with steady operating results and a conservative balance sheet. This approach allows us to further expand community access to high-quality healthcare and lower total cost of care.

In 2019, Sutter Health invested $662 million in new facilities and lifesaving technology. The California Pacific Medical Center Van Ness Campus opened March 2, 2019, signaling the completion of multiple modernization and seismic upgrade projects in San Francisco. Sutter Health also facilitated expanded access to care through construction projects in multiple communities, including Contra Costa, Marin, Placer, Sacramento, San Francisco, San Jose, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Sonoma and Yolo counties.

Sutter continues to innovate new ways of delivering safe, high-quality care outside of its hospital and clinic walls to meet community needs for flexibility and efficiency—all with an eye toward reducing healthcare costs, too. Video visits and Walk-In Care clinics continued to create more options for patients to access primary care needs in 2019. Patients met with care providers through video visits 7,400 times last year, and sought primary care assistance through Walk-In Care appointments nearly 125,000 times. Sutter Health also reached multi-year contracts with several insurance companies, preserving patient access to Sutter care teams while keeping care affordable.

Sutter Health also invested $60 million in research and development, supporting efforts addressing a range of health concerns including stroke and other neurological disorders, cancer, liver and kidney transplants, gastrointestinal disorders and diabetes.

“Caring for our patients and for their communities drives the work we do across Sutter Health every day,” said Sutter Health President & CEO Sarah Krevans. “When we draw on the benefits of our integrated network, we’re able to give patients more doors to access care, develop more tools and spread innovative practices that expand access to affordable, safe and personal healthcare.”

Care for the Underserved
Sutter Health’s total investment in community benefit in 2019 was $830 million, which is an increase from $734 million in 2018. This amount includes traditional charity care and unreimbursed costs of providing care to Medi-Cal patients, as well as investments in community health programs to address prioritized health needs as identified by regional community health needs assessments.

• As part of Sutter Health’s commitment to fulfill its not-for-profit status and serve the most vulnerable in its communities, Sutter hospitals, affiliated medical foundations and other healthcare providers offer charity care policies to ensure that patients can access needed medical care regardless of their ability to pay. Sutter’s charity care policies, which have been in place for many years, offer financial assistance to uninsured and underinsured patients earning less than 400 percent of the annually adjusted Federal Poverty Level. In 2019, Sutter Health invested $125 million in charity care, compared to $89 million in 2018.

• Overall, since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, greater numbers of previously uninsured people now have more access to healthcare coverage through the Medi-Cal and Medicare programs. The payments for patients who are covered by Medi-Cal and Medicare do not cover the full costs of providing care. In 2019, Sutter Health invested $499 million more than the state paid to care for Medi-Cal patients.

• Examples of regional prioritized health needs include access to mental health and addiction care, disease prevention and management, access to basic needs such as housing, jobs and food, as well as increased access to primary care services.

See more about how Sutter Health reinvests into the community by visiting sutterpartners.org.

Sutter Health 2019 Financial Results
Dollars in millions
  2019 2018
Operating Revenues $13,304 $12,697
Operating Expenses 13,852 12,586
(Loss) Income from Operations (548) 111
Investment Income 246 187
Change in net unrealized gains and losses from investments 491 (454)
Other components of net periodic postretirement cost 90
Loss on extinguishment of debt (54)
(Loss) Income 189 (120)
Less income attributable to noncontrolling interests (75) (78)
(Loss) Income attributable to Sutter Health 114 (198)
Capital Investment $662 $924

Sutter Health Statement on State of the State

Posted on Feb 19, 2020 in Scroll Images, Uncategorized

Sarah Krevans, president and CEO of Sutter Health, today issued the following statement on Governor Newsom’s State of the State:

“I was honored to view Governor Newsom’s State of the State address from the Assembly gallery today, and I applaud the Governor’s commitment to making a difference in the lives of the thousands of people experiencing homelessness across our state. We see firsthand the adverse impact homelessness has on California’s vulnerable populations each day throughout our integrated network of care. Driven by our mission to improve community health, we work with public and private partners to help reduce the root causes and effects of homelessness in the communities we serve. We look forward to working with the governor and local stakeholders to build on the work we’ve done to date.”

Sutter’s Self-Prescribed Eco-Rx Shows Impact

Posted on Feb 18, 2020 in Scroll Images, Uncategorized

Organization snags 2019 SEAL Business Sustainability Award; Employees and leadership charged up to do more in 2020!

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Sutter has dialed up its sustainability efforts in recent years. The not-for-profit organization’s environmental stewardship committees have made major strides towards minimizing waste, increasing energy efficiency and creating healthier communities for patients and their families.

In 2019 alone, Sutter completed five solar power projects, launched a pilot program to reduce the amount of harmful anesthetic gasses released into the atmosphere during surgeries, and increased plant-based meals by 20 percent in its hospital cafeterias.

For strides like these—and more, Sutter received a 2019 SEAL Business Sustainability Award. SEAL –Sustainability, Environmental Achievement and Leadership – honored the organization for stepping up as one of four founding members of the California Health Care Climate Alliance. The alliance brings significant healthcare experience and a combined voice to the legislative and regulatory process to advocate for and enact climate-smart policies. Additionally, Sutter was recognized for having developed a comprehensive sustainability campaign focusing on several key initiatives, including energy conservation and greenhouse gas reduction, for which it showed results.

Sutter Health awarded 2019 SEAL Business Sustainability Award.
Sutter Health awarded a 2019 SEAL Business Sustainability Award.

“At Sutter Health, caring for our planet is integral to our mission of fostering healthier environments,” said Steve Lockhart, M.D., PhD, Sutter Health chief medical officer and executive sponsor of Sutter’s Environmental Stewardship Program.

Sutter Takes a Proactive Approach to Sustainability

As the organization looks to the decade and environmental challenges ahead, its commitment to sustainability has never been stronger. Here are three ways Sutter is continuing to address sustainability across its integrated network:

• The organization is a major supporter of MedShare, a non-profit that delivers surplus medical supplies and equipment to communities in need around the world. In the last 10 years, Sutter has contributed more than $11 million worth of lifesaving medical supplies to improve global health and has eliminated 1 million pounds of waste, such as patient beds, from reaching landfills.

• Sutter recently received a major grant from the State of California for a pilot program where ten of its hospitals—Memorial Hospital Los Banos; Memorial Medical Center; Sutter Tracy Community Hospital; Sutter Amador Hospital; Sutter Auburn Faith Hospital; Sutter Davis Hospital, Sutter Medical Center, Sacramento; Sutter Roseville Medical Center; Sutter Solano Medical Center and Sutter Surgical Hospital North Valley—are donating leftover food to local nonprofits to feed the hungry. As part of this grant, Sutter will be able to track where the food goes across Northern California and show its impact.

• Sutter’s Building Renewal Program is also making significant investments in existing buildings with the goal of creating greater efficiency and reducing emissions. Solar panels have been installed at seven campuses across the network, which represents a reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 7 million pounds per year. This is equivalent to the GHG emissions for 674 passenger vehicles driven for one year or the CO2 emissions from 3.5 million pounds of coal burned for one year. In 2020, the team is evaluating many more campuses to see if installing solar is viable. Sutter is also continuing its electric vehicle charging station program.

Pledging to Do More

Sutter Health recognizes healthcare’s role in climate change. As such, it is prepared to do what it can to support Northern California’s dynamic ecosystem for the better. This commitment extends to Sutter’s nearly 60,000 employees.

“Each of us can play a role—even by making one small change to our daily routines,” said Dr. Lockhart.

Employees across Sutter’s integrated network have been invited to take a sustainability pledge to commit to making a positive impact on the environment, at work and at home in 2020.

Sutter Launches Ferrum’s AI Quality Platform to Prevent Medical Errors, Fight Cancer, and Reduce Healthcare Costs

Posted on Feb 18, 2020 in Innovation, Scroll Images, Uncategorized

Sutter is the first health system in the U.S. to run quality review on applicable CT lung scans; Ferrum’s AI quality platform aims to reduce medical errors across the patient journey

SAN FRANCISCO—Sutter Health, a not-for profit healthcare network in Northern California, today announced the launch of Ferrum’s artificial intelligence (AI) powered quality platform to deliver higher quality and more consistent care to its patients. Ferrum Health’s next generation technology is designed to improve quality in medical imaging, with the goal of helping Sutter find important diagnoses like lung cancers in their early stages. Ferrum’s technology is helping Sutter support patients through improved outcomes, an enhanced care experience, and a reduced total cost of care over time.

Ferrum’s quality platform analyzes medical images alongside physicians’ written notes. It uses computer vision and natural language algorithms to identify abnormalities and flags them for Sutter clinicians to follow-up with patients and change care plans as necessary.

In August 2019, Sutter Medical Foundation went live with Ferrum’s AI-powered quality system in Sacramento, Calif. to improve lung cancer care, becoming the first in the country to run the technology on applicable CT scans and radiologist reports. The system analyzed documented findings that match, or don’t match, the algorithm’s review of the image.

“For those rare instances where a nodule is overlooked, we can in a very quick time period—usually within 24 hours—continue the care process instead of waiting until larger nodules are detected at a later medical visit,” said Charles McDonnell III, M.D., a Sutter Medical Group radiologist and associate medical director of risk management. “Having a system for quality coverage of our diagnostic decisions makes us stronger, more effective advocates for our patients, and gives patients greater comfort and peace of mind.”

If there is a potential discrepancy (i.e., a nodule or other abnormality found in the scan but not mentioned in the report), the scan is “flagged” and sent to chest radiology subject matter experts and the department quality committee for further review. Any discrepancies that the subject matter expert finds to be actual nodules which were not found in the initial reading of the scan go back to the initial radiologist. That radiologist can then update his or her report and quickly provide the patient with recommendations for appropriate high-quality care, such as a follow-up at Sutter’s Lung Nodule Clinic.

According to Jason Wiesner, M.D., a radiologist and medical director of the health system’s Diagnostic Imaging Service Line, estimated discrepancy rates at Sutter were already four times lower than the estimated rate of error nationally. With the implementation of Ferrum’s AI technology within the pilot, this number was reduced even further. In the first 90 days of deployment at Sutter, Ferrum’s AI technology reviewed more than 10,000 CT scans containing lung tissue. Eighty-three of its flagged findings warranted additional radiologist review and intervention. A subset of these patients was confirmed to have findings that needed follow-up care.

“This is a testament to the quality of work done by our radiologists on behalf of our patients,” Dr. Wiesner said. “We are giving our doctors and patients a safety net and ensuring we continue to provide the highest quality of care. This project shows the commitment of Sutter Health to providing the highest reliability healthcare to the communities we serve.”

“We’ve shown the profound impact that quality monitoring technologies can have on identifying opportunities to improve care and prevent potential medical errors,” said Pelu Tran, co-founder and CEO of Ferrum Health. “Most importantly, thanks to the advanced work of both IT teams, it took us just a single day to deploy a platform that improved the quality of diagnostic care for Sutter patients across all of Sacramento – all without impacting their physicians’ workflows. The work we’ve done here is the beginning of a new era in healthcare’s battle against medical errors, and we’re excited to continue to move the field forward alongside quality luminaries like Sutter.”

Sutter Lakeside Hospital Welcomes Scott Knight as Chief Administrative Officer

Posted on Feb 13, 2020 in Carousel, People, Scroll Images, Sutter Lakeside Hospital, Uncategorized

LAKEPORT, Calif. – Sutter Health announced today it has selected Scott Knight as chief administrative officer of Sutter Lakeside Hospital, effective Feb. 3. Knight was previously Assistant Administrator of Sutter Tracy Community Hospital.

“Scott is committed to serving the community, as he demonstrated by serving on the boards of both the Tracy and Ripon Chambers of Commerce,” said Julie Petrini, president and CEO of Hospitals, Sutter Health Bay Area. “I know Scott is eager to bring this passion for community to his new role at Sutter Lakeside.”

About Scott Knight

Scott earned his bachelor’s degree in Business Management from Brigham Young University and a master’s degree in Health Care Administration from University of Washington. Scott has a broad healthcare background in finance, revenue cycle, planning, business development, marketing and community relations, operations, and administration.

While at Sutter Tracy, Scott provided leadership for non-nursing operations and business development. During his tenure, Sutter Tracy received patient safety awards from various organizations, and in 2020 was awarded a CMS 5-star rating – the highest ranking possible – for overall performance on quality measures including readmission rates, safety of care and patient experience.

About Sutter Health

Sutter Health is more than 60,000 people strong thanks to its integrated network of physicians, employees and volunteers. Rooted in Sutter Health’s not-for-profit mission, these team members partner to deliver exceptional care that feels personal. From physician offices to hospitals to outpatient care centers and home services, they proudly support the more than 3 million people in their care—nearly 1 percent of the U.S. population, in one of the most diverse and innovative regions in the world. Sutter team members adopt new technologies, make novel discoveries and embrace creative thinking to help patients and communities achieve their best health. From its street nurse program that provides check-ups for homeless people, to telemedicine-aided specialist consultations, to walk-in care clinics, to video visits, the Sutter Health team goes beyond traditional models to make care more convenient and to nurture and empower people throughout their healthcare journey.

For more information about the Sutter Health network visit: sutterhealth.org| facebook.com/sutterhealth| youtube.com/sutterhealth| twitter.com/sutterhealth