Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center and Alice Peck Day Memorial Hospital Integrate Obstetrical Services
The Board of Trustees of Alice Peck Day Memorial Hospital (APD) has approved the integration of its Obstetrical Service with the Obstetrics, Gynecology & Nurse Midwifery Service at Dartmouth-Hitchcock (D-H), effective July 15, 2018.
APD joined the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health system in March 2016. Since that time, one of the key goals of the affiliation has been to integrate these services in order to ensure the sustainability of high quality, accessible, and cost effective obstetrics services for residents of the Upper Valley. A wide range of stakeholders––including trustees, senior leadership, and obstetrical providers, nurses, and staff at APD and D-H –– have been working diligently toward an alignment of these two programs.
The integration plan calls for women currently under the care of APD obstetrical providers to deliver at the APD Birthing Center through July 14, 2018. Beginning on July 15, women currently under the care of APD obstetrical providers will deliver on the Birthing Pavilion at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, located just over four miles from the APD campus. Pre-natal and post-natal care will continue to be provided on the APD campus, and these services will also be available to patients at D-H’s Obstetrics Clinic, giving patients the opportunity to choose their preferred location.
Following the integration, APD will continue to offer gynecological services to patients on its campus, and will refer patients to D-H for specialized services.
“APD has a long and proud role in the community in terms of birthing services, and this decision to integrate our service with Dartmouth-Hitchcock represents an appropriate evolution of that service in the face of a demanding external environment,” said APD President and CEO Sue Mooney, MD, MS, FACOG. “Both APD and Dartmouth-Hitchcock have worked diligently and carefully to develop an integrated service that combines the best of both obstetrical services for the community. Together, we will provide patient care that is highly personalized and ensures access to sophisticated medical care for complex needs,” she said.
Mooney also noted another important reason for this transition lies with the operational and financial challenges in operating a 24/7 comprehensive obstetrical service for a small, rural hospital like APD.
“Providing a positive and meaningful patient experience is central to our mission throughout the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health system,” said Dr. Joanne Conroy, Chief Executive Officer and President of Dartmouth-Hitchcock and Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health. “We understand the significant role which APD has played in the community for many years, and they are an important part of the system. Working with our colleagues at APD we seek to provide women in the Upper Valley with high-quality care that serves them in their birthing experience,” she said.
“We recognize the reasons why families chose APD for obstetrical care,” said Dr. Emily Baker, who is the Vice Chair of Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Dartmouth-Hitchcock. “We are also committed to ensuring that women make a successful transition to this integrated service and want them to feel and to know that they are welcomed and supported,” she said.
Three initiatives related to women’s health and childbirth are expected to launch on the APD campus as part of this transition. First, some of the centering classes run by the integrated obstetrical service will be held on the APD campus in the Robert A. Mesropian Center for Community Care. In addition, the D-H Women’s Health Resource Center, located on the pedestrian mall in downtown Lebanon, NH, will be expanding its programming for APD patients at the Robert A. Mesropian Center for Community Care. Finally, a new program known as “Community Mothering” will be launched as part of the integrated obstetrical service. This community-based, pre- and post-natal program will provide support for patients who would benefit from additional engagement during their pregnancy, including home visits by community health workers for pregnant patients and new parents.
In addition to communicating with APD obstetrical patients and offering a dedicated phone line for current patients, APD and D-H will invite all current obstetrical patients to individual meetings with providers to share more about the integration of the obstetrics program. More information about the decision and its impact on patients and the community, can be found in our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).