Looking Back And Ahead

Affiliation with Ridgeview brings expanded health care services and improved facilities to greater Sibley community

It was just more than one year ago that the former Sibley Medical Center entered into an affiliation agreement with Waconia-based Ridgeview Medical Center. This unique relationship was formed to strengthen Sibley Medical’s position as a viable and growing health care provider and, on Jan. 1, 2014, the operation of the hospital and its four primary care clinics was officially transferred from the City of Arlington to Ridgeview.

“This has been a great first year for the patients and staff of Ridgeview Sibley Medical Center. By aligning ourselves with a larger system, our goal was to bring expanded high-quality, patient-centered services to the greater Sibley County community and benefit from a nationally recognized health care leader in Ridgeview,” said Todd Sandberg, vice president and administrator, Ridgeview Sibley Medical Center.

As part of the agreement, a new nonprofit entity—owned by Ridgeview and governed by a new nine-member Board of Directors—was formed. “It was very important to the City, staff and patients to have a local ‘voice’ on this Board. With five Arlington residents and three from other Sibley County communities, we can effectively plan and implement strategic initiatives to meet the health care needs of the southwest region,” said Kevin Lindstrand, chairperson, Ridgeview Sibley Board of Directors.

According to Sandberg, patients and residents are already experiencing the benefits of the affiliation with Ridgeview. In 2014, Ridgeview Sibley welcomed several new primary and specialty providers, increased access to services, introduced technology that would have otherwise not been possible, and made improvements to both Ridgeview Winthrop and Gaylord Clinic facilities.

“Ridgeview is also making significant improvements to the Emergency Department and other priority areas within the hospital building, to enhance both the environment of care and overall patient experience,” Sandberg added.

“The 2014 affiliation was a major milestone for both of our organizations. We are looking forward to strengthening our relationship to further improve the health of the residents in the communities we serve for years to come,” said Bob Stevens, president and CEO, Ridgeview Medical Center. “Ridgeview Sibley Medical Center patients can expect to see more great things happening on the Arlington campus and throughout the entire Ridgeview system in 2015 and beyond.”

Affiliation Highlights:

More Physicians, New Services
Among Ridgeview Sibley’s priorities is to stabilize and grow its physician base. In the summer of 2014, Matthew Herold, MD, joined Ridgeview Sibley Medical Center as medical director of the Emergency Department. Dr. Herold is board certified in Emergency Medicine and also provides leadership in the Emergency Department at Ridgeview Medical Center in Waconia.

During 2014, Ridgeview Sibley also welcomed two board-certified Family Medicine providers to its staff: Emma Carlin, MD, Ridgeview Arlington and Ridgeview Gaylord Clinics; and Michael Douglas, MD, Ridgeview Arlington and Ridgeview Winthrop Clinics. Dr. Douglas also cares for patients in the Ridgeview Sibley Urgent Care and Emergency Department.

The affiliation with Ridgeview has also improved local residents’ access to specialty care—a priority need identified by the community. Shortly before the official affiliation agreement was finalized, Birendra Kumar, MD, returned to Ridgeview Sibley, bringing oncology services back to the community. Dr. Kumar is board certified in Hematology and Oncology, and also sees patients at Ridgeview Hematology & Oncology Clinic at Two Twelve Medical Center in Chaska.

Charles J. Snow, MD, a board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist, Western OB/GYN, A Division of Ridgeview Clinics, began seeing patients in Arlington in January 2015. He also sees patients at the Western OB/GYN clinic locations in Waconia and Chaska.

Technology Enhancements
To improve access to information, enhance patient care and safety, and streamline processes, Ridgeview Sibley has made several technology, computer systems, and security system upgrades at the hospital and clinics. One of the patient care enhancements was the installation of InstyMeds at the hospital in the spring of 2014. To meet patients’ after-hours medication needs, this fully automated ATM-style machine dispenses prescription medications directly to patients immediately before leaving the Ridgeview Sibley Urgent Care and Emergency Department.

Facility Improvements
Enhancing access to primary care services and overall patient experience, Ridgeview financed the construction of the new Ridgeview Winthrop Clinic (opened in December 2013) as well as improvements to the Gaylord clinic site.

Ridgeview is also investing in facility upgrades to the Arlington campus. At its November 2014 meeting, the Ridgeview Sibley Board of Directors selected an architectural firm to begin working on design options to increase privacy for patients, improve patient waiting areas and flow, create staff efficiencies, and support service growth and access improvements.

Completion of this project will likely be late 2016 to ensure that Ridgeview Sibley remains fully operational during construction.

DNV Accreditation
Highlighting a year full of integration initiatives and enhancements was Ridgeview Sibley Medical Center‘s recent accreditation by DNV (Det Norske Veritas), the national health care accreditation organization used by Ridgeview Medical Center. This accreditation program requires health care systems to evaluate the continuum of patient care throughout their facilities and take measured steps to improve when it is warranted.

“Our affiliation with Ridgeview brings significant benefit to our community,” Sandberg added. “I’m proud of our Board, providers, staff and patients who supported the affiliation and who are working together to ensure the long-term health of both organizations and, most important, the people and communities we serve. “

Ridgeview Sibley Board of Directors
Timothy Dolan, Winthrop
Wayne Hubin, Watertown, Ridgeview Medical Center Board Member
Kevin Lindstrand, Arlington
Brenda Pautsch, Gaylord
Lisa Pfarr, Arlington
Lyle Rud, Arlington
Dennis Schultz, Arlington
Dee Thomas, Henderson
David Welch, Arlington

Sibley Medical

Pictured, from left: Kevin Lindstrand, Chairperson, Ridgeview Sibley Medical Center Board of Directors and Todd Sandberg, Vice President and Administrator, Ridgeview Sibley Medical Center