Resurrected and Renamed, a Hospital Reintroduces Itself to Its Neighbors by Going Folksy
// By Peter Hochstein //
St. Francis Hospital and Health Centers in Poughkeepsie, New York, wasn’t the first hospital to find itself drowning in a sea of financial troubles and it probably won’t be the last.
Having filed for bankruptcy, “It was accepting bids for full acquisition from other hospitals,” recalls Barbara Kram, Senior Director, Corporate Marketing and Communications of Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla, New York. “And we were the winning purchaser.”
It’s hard to imagine any two hospitals being more different. The acquired institution had been a 243-bed community hospital with a church affiliation and a lackluster medical reputation. It served primarily the mid-Hudson Valley, well to the north of New York City. Depending on how you define the region, it might include parts of well-off suburban Westchester and Rockland counties. But it also most certainly includes lots of small, less prosperous towns, some with a countercultural ethos, some with pockets of poverty. The region’s economy relies heavily on farming and tourism.
On the other hand, Westchester Medical Center, roughly 60 miles to the south, is a 652-bed regional Level I trauma center and the teaching hospital of New York Medical College. It has a strong reputation in specialties ranging from neurosciences and oncology to organ transplants.
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