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Expansionary Geisinger explains its success


Sleepy downtown Danville, Pa.,  where Geisinger is based.

This interview with David Feinberg, M.D.,  the chief executive of Geisinger Health System, which serves a  largely rural clientele in Pennsylvania’s coal country, gives a pretty good idea of why, as The Wall Street Journal notes, it has “become a national poster child for the kind of carefully coordinated, data-driven healthcare that experts say one day could right the nation’s troubled medical system, providing better care at lower costs.”

Among other things, the system has long been  a pioneer in the use of electronic medical records and other data, which helps it to avoid unnecessary procedures. That the company also runs an insurance company  gives it an unusual incentives to reduce the number of many procedures.

And look for Geisinger to keep expanding:

“WSJ: Geisinger has been growing in size and scope, in part through merger-and-acquisition activity such as the deal with AtlantiCare health system in New Jersey. What are your plans for future mergers and acquisitions?

“DR. FEINBERG: Our M&A activity is wild. As far as our growth goes, I’m really looking for people that are culturally aligned with where we’re going. I want people or organizations—and AtlantiCare is a great example—that may be at a different place in the journey but believe in the journey around population health, innovation.”


Garden State giants


Barnabas Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Health System  plan to merge, with their combined  11 hospitals  forming New Jersey’s largest health system. Meanwhile, the  proposed merger of Hackensack University Health Network and Meridian Health would  create a nine-hospital system.

Other New Jersey mergers include Geisinger Health System’s agreement to to acquire AtlantiCare and Meridian Health’s deal  to acquire Raritan Bay Medical Center. Further,  the  Atlantic Health System in Morristown, has acquired Chilton Hospital in 2014 and has a deal pending for Hackettstown Regional Medical Center.
Big is now usually seen as better in the American hospital sector.

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