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Northwest Hospital & Medical Center to Join UW Medicine – Q & A

What is Northwest Hospital's new relationship with UW?
Following unanimous approval by the Northwest Hospital Board of Trustees and endorsement by the UW Board of Regents, Northwest Hospital & Medical Center will join and become an integral part of the UW Medicine health system.

As the newest entity of UW Medicine, Northwest Hospital will join the systemís six other current entities, including Airlift Northwest, Harborview Medical Center, University of Washington Medical Center, UW Medicine Neighborhood Clinics, University of Washington Physicians, and the UW School of Medicine. UW Medicine is also a corporate member of the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance and Childrenís University Medical Group, and has close affiliations with Seattle Childrenís, the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and the VA Puget Sound Health Care System.

Why did Northwest Hospital decide to affiliate with UW?
We believe a long-term strategic partner will significantly strengthen our ability to meet Northwest Hospitalís mission of service to our community. While we have succeeded as an independent organization, an affiliation with a broader institution like UW will allow us to thrive and grow in ways we would not have been able to alone. UW and Northwest Hospital share similar missions and a cultural commitment to clinical excellence and quality, patient safety and outstanding customer service.

This affiliation is a natural expansion of the Cooperative Program Agreement we signed with UW Medicine in 1997, which established a long-term relationship to collaborate on select patient care, clinical research and educational activities. That agreement gave rise to our successful partnership with UW in cardiac surgery, which is now ranked as the leading program in the Puget Sound region.

What are the benefits of this affiliation?
We will be able to bring to our community the additional breadth and depth of services and expertise of one of the top medical institutions in the country. We believe our patients will benefit from the combination of Northwest Hospital's community focus, personalized patient care environment and history of technological innovation and the broader strength of UW's clinical excellence, teaching and research mission.

Did UW Medicine buy Northwest Hospital & Medical Center?
No. The UW will be the sole corporate member of UW Medicine/Northwest, a nonprofit tax exempt organization. Currently, Health Resources Northwest (HRN), a tax exempt nonprofit corporation, is the sole corporate member of the Northwest Hospital. Under the new arrangement, UW Medicine/Northwest will be the sole corporate member of HRN and will have a Management Services Contract with HRN.

Will Northwest Hospital change its name?
Northwest Hospital will continue to use its name with the inclusion of an acknowledgement of our UW Medicine affiliation, consistent with other entities of UW Medicine.

Will the affiliation with UW change any of the services Northwest Hospital offers?
Northwest Hospital will retain all of the core clinical services and medical technologies currently available on our campus. We also expect the affiliation with UW to enhance many of the services we provide our community now, as well as allow us to introduce new services in the future. We anticipate the first opportunities for clinical collaboration will center around cardiovascular services, oncology services and maternal and child health.

Will the Northwest Hospital campus change in any way as a result of the affiliation?
One key benefit of this affiliation is that it enables UW to expand its facilities to better support its research, teaching and patient care mission, while also meeting Northwest Hospital's goal to enhance services for our community. We believe that Northwest Hospital has the land to support the goals of both organizations. After a thoughtful, careful strategic planning process with UW, it is likely that we will begin to further develop the Northwest Hospital campus.

Will Northwest Hospital become a teaching hospital? Will medical residents be providing care? Will there be more research and clinical studies?
As the Northwest Hospital Board and medical leadership further explore the partnership and engage in strategic planning with UW, they will evaluate whether to expand teaching, research and clinical studies on the Northwest Hospital campus.

Will Northwest Hospital staff now be employed by UW?
The staffs of Northwest Hospital and UW will remain employed by their respective organizations.

If my doctor worked at Northwest Hospital, will I have to go to UW for treatment now?
The medical staffs of each organization will remain the same. Northwest Hospital physicians are not required to send their patients to UW. However, one of the greatest benefits of this partnership will be increased access to specialists at UW, and more treatment options for our patients.

If I am treated at Northwest Hospital, will I receive a bill from Northwest Hospital or UW?
Northwest Hospital will continue to bill patients directly for services.

Will my medical records still be at Northwest Hospital or will they be transferred to UW?
As an independent care provider, Northwest Hospital will retain our patients' medical records, and you may continue to request them directly from us.

If I've made a donation to Northwest Hospital will it be given to the UW?
Any funds you have generously given to Northwest Hospital continue to be dedicated to supporting our mission to our community, which will expand and strengthen through our affiliation with UW.

Who do I contact if I have questions about this new affiliation?
We welcome your questions and comments. Please e-mail us at neighbor2nwh@nwhsea.org or phone 206-368-1609.

 
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