TO THE EDITOR:

... I would like to discuss the newly formed relationship between Thedacare and Community Health Network (CHN).

... Smaller community hospitals have been especially challenged to be able to provide high quality services supported by advanced technology with limited financial resources.

... Berlin Hospital, like other small hospitals in the area, is designated as a critical-access hospital. This means that there is a limit on how many inpatients can be at the hospital at one time.

Also, this designation means that some services, like heart surgery, are not and will not be provided in Berlin.

But this designation has helped Berlin Hospital and the CHN clinics remain independent for many years.

However, with hospital and clinic reimbursement for services declining, small hospitals are struggling to be able to afford to provide the same level of service and to be able to finance capital improvements as the buildings age.

With that in mind, many hospitals have been affiliating with larger hospitals to be able to continue to provide quality service and to be able to expand services. ...

The leadership at CHN has recognized the benefits of affiliation and has sought to be proactive to establish an affiliation at a time that the organization is in a position to be able to make it beneficial for both parties involved....

This affiliation will help ensure that Berlin and the surrounding communities will have local access to quality health care for many years to come. ...

— Dr. Michael Shattuck

Community Health Network

Berlin

To read the entire letter, see the Jan. 30, 2014 edition of The Ripon Commonwealth Press.

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