Wishard Eskenazi, Community announce new partnership

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Health care providers are looking ahead and trying to prepare for the Affordable Health Care Act. Monday morning, two major health care leaders in central Indiana announced a partnership that they say aims to make sure any Hoosier who wants health care will be able to get it.

The heads of Community Health Network and Wishard Eskenzai Health announced they are forming a partnership. It is a major undertaking that will be headed up by Bryan Mills, who is the current CEO of Community Health Network.

Mills says the goal is to make it easy for patients no matter where they seek care.

"I think the worst thing that could happen would be that somebody who has not had insurance all of the sudden has insurance and they can't get in someplace to use it. That's wrong. And that's how our system's set up, so we've been trying to form partnerships, like the partnership announced a few weeks ago with Walgreens. Some people would say - well, aren't you competitors? Well, no. We need to find a way to reach out to those people so when somebody goes into a Walgreens clinic, it'll be like being in Community, and again, information flows. When I think of health care reform, I see this unbelievable responsibility to create a funnel big enough that anybody can get in," said Mills.

There will be no name change and there is no exchange of money. It's not a merger, but instead a pooling of resources. Eskenazi is known for trauma and burn care, while Community is known for cardiovascular and cancer care.

There are also partnerships with students and medical schools to make sure that there are enough medical providers and staff. The list impacted is extensive.

"For Wishard, we bring the IU School of Medicine with which we've had an over 100-year partnership; Community is in partnership with the Marian University College of Osteopathic Medicine. We have relationships with the IU School of Dentistry, IU School of Nursing, Ivy Tech School of Nursing, Butler University College of Pharmacy, Purdue University College of Pharmacy," said Dr. Lisa Harris, CEO and medical director at Wishard, listing some of those relationships.