Excellent patient care, landmark research and innovative community programs continue to flourish, thanks to an important partnership formed five years ago between Banner Health and Sun Health. In 2008, two non-profit organizations united with one goal in mind: to enhance the health of residents living in the Northwest Valley.

In the past five years, more than $166 million has been invested by Banner Health and Sun Health to enrich patient care and healthy living services. Together, we acknowledge the generous support of the community that built the local medical enterprise and we are grateful this support continues.

One of the most significant accomplishments of the two organizations coming together was the installation of an electronic medical record system at Banner Boswell and Banner Del E. Webb, fulfilling a promise made by Banner before the merger. This technology provides safer and more effective care for every patient.

Sun Health, working in partnership with the local medical centers, has launched several new and emerging community health programs. Perhaps the program with the most significant impact to local residents is the Sun Health Care Transitions program. With a focus on reducing unnecessary readmissions to the hospital, Care Transitions has assisted 1,605 families following discharge from the hospitals. By reducing the readmission rate by as much as 69 percent over previous experiences, at least 218 individuals have avoided a second admission to the hospital for the same condition.

Care Transitions is now one of 102 demonstration projects funded by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid and it has been recognized nationally by the Care Continuum Alliance for excellence in collaboration and innovation.

Within the medical centers, the Banner/Sun Health partnership has enabled significant improvements including:

  • Two new cath labs for cardiac studies and treatment,
  • Advanced breast imaging technology,
  • An improved nurse call system,
  • A new endoscopy suite,
  • Support of the innovative eICU technology,
  • The development of a new hybrid operating room, and
  • Numerous advancements in support of orthopedic surgery and therapy.

Outside the walls of the medical centers Sun Health has developed a strategy focused on “population health.”  These efforts include:

  • A new Community Health Education series offered free to the public in partnership with Banner Health and other local medical experts,
  • Sun Health Care Transitions,
  • Sun Health Medication Management,
  • Sun Health Memory Care Navigator program,
  • Sun Health Vial of Life/File of Life program, another free service supported through Banner Health and Sun Health volunteers and local donations, and
  • The Sun Health Wellness Center (opening in January).

Together Banner and Sun Health continue the development of groundbreaking research in Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and heart disease at the Banner Sun Health Research Institute.

Five years ago, the community may have wondered how the change in ownership of the two local hospitals would affect health care delivery in the Northwest Valley. I hope this brief report provides the community with an understanding of the many benefits that have resulted from the Banner/Sun Health partnership and illustrate our commitment toward delivering superior health care for all those in need.

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