Riverview Health Expands with Freestanding ER & Urgent Care Facilities
// By Jane Weber Brubaker //
If your health system is in a geographic region experiencing rapid growth, it makes sense to capitalize on that trend and expand right along with the population. Hamilton County, a suburb of Indianapolis, is “growing by leaps and bounds,” according to Seth Warren, president and CEO of Riverview Health.
Riverview Health’s primary location in Noblesville is a full-service, 156-bed hospital founded 110 years ago. Last year, it opened a second facility, Riverview Health Westfield Hospital, which includes “the area’s first combined emergency and urgent care center.” This new hybrid model allows patients to receive care at the appropriate level — and be billed at the appropriate level.
So it wasn’t a big leap for Warren to embrace the hybrid concept when he got a call from Intuitive Health in Texas. Intuitive Health is a commercial spinoff of Legacy ER & Urgent Care, a company that owns and operates freestanding integrated emergency and urgent care facilities in the Dallas area.
“Legacy was started in 2008 by a group of ER physicians who believed they could build more of a retail-centric model in the community,” says David Apple, chief marketing officer for both Legacy and Intuitive Health. “From day one, the mission was to operate a dual model.”
What appealed to Warren was Intuitive Health’s customer-focused approach. Legacy’s Net Promoter Score, consistently in the 80s, demonstrates its commitment to service. Warren says, “Customer service is very important to us, and when they came to us and talked about their model and the customer focus, it really resonated with us.”
The two organizations have formed a joint venture and are in the process of building four freestanding emergency/urgent care (ER/UC) facilities in retail settings throughout the Indianapolis suburbs. All will be “part and parcel” of Riverview Health, Warren says.
Can this hybrid model — hospital-branded freestanding ER/UC facilities — rein in costs related to over-utilization of ER services, grow market share, and increase patient satisfaction?