New hospital leader praises quality of care at Medina

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 3 April 2015 at 12:00 am

‘Critical access hospital’ status will raise reimbursements

Photo by Tom Rivers  – Wendy Jacobson, interim president and chief executive officer for Orleans Community Health, speaks to the Albion Rotary Club on Thursday.

MEDINA – Medina Memorial Hospital may be a small hospital but it ranks high in the region for providing quality care, said the interim president and chief executive officer for Orleans Community Health.

Wendy Jacobson said Medina Memorial tops the national benchmark for providing care for surgical, chest pain, pneumonia, acute myocardial infarct and many other conditions.

“We really provide quality care close to home,” Jacobson told the Albion Rotary Club on Thursday. “We are held to same standards as the larger hospitals.”

Jacobson has been leading the hospital and its parent organization, Orleans Community Health, since Dolores Horvath resigned in February. Jacobson said she intends to apply for the position on a permanent basis.

She sees positives for the organization, especially with the impending announcement that it will be a “critical access hospital.” That status from the state Department of Health is expected to be retroactive, going back to January.

That status will give Medina Memorial higher reimbursement rates through Medicaid and will strengthen Medina’s bottom line, Jacobson said.

The designation as “critical access hospital” also will help Orleans Community Health attract doctors to work in Medina and at the healthcare site in Albion at the corner of Butts Road and Route 31, which would be considered a rural clinic. Doctors that work at those sites will get a break on paying back their student loans for medical school, Jacobson said.

Orleans Community Health has an affiliation with Catholic Health Systems. That organization is helping to bring primary care doctors and other specialists to Orleans Community Health, said Jacobson, who also addressed the Orleans County Legislature last week.

The hospital on April 9 will celebrate the renovation of the North Wing Long-Term Residential Home. That celebration, including tours, will be from 5 to 7 p.m.