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Habersham Medical Center & Northeast Georgia Health System Are Working Together for Healthier Tomorrows

Published on July 01, 2019

Starting today, the same physician groups that provide emergency and inpatient care at Northeast Georgia Medical Center (NGMC) are extending their coverage to include Habersham Medical Center (HMC).  These services form a new affiliation for HMC with Northeast Georgia Health System (NGHS).

“This is an exciting time for HMC and the communities we serve,” says Lynn Boggs, HMC’s chief executive officer. “Our new affiliation with NGHS will enable us to take our exceptional patient care to new heights. The residents of Habersham County no longer need to leave this community and go to Gainesville for emergency and inpatient services. They can receive that same great care closer to home.”

Since the Hospital Authority of Habersham County voted to approve the affiliation on February 19, both hospitals have worked together to develop a leadership structure that supports this collaborative approach to care for these services.

“This agreement helps everyone involved,” says Carol Burrell, president and CEO of NGHS.  “Habersham Medical Center becomes a stronger, independent community hospital;

NGMC will open up needed beds in Gainesville as more patients utilize available services in Habersham; and the Habersham community gets improved access to high-quality care.”

Both hospitals already participate in a “clinically integrated network” called HP2.  The HP2 network is a group of insurers, hospitals and more than 480 providers from dozens of practices across northeast Georgia who work together to better coordinate patient care.  The network’s goal is focused on improving quality and outcomes while reducing cost for patients.

Both organizations remain independent, but they are also continuing due diligence for a letter of intent (LOI) the Hospital Authority of Habersham County and the Habersham County Commission voted to approve last month.  The LOI outlines a proposed five-year agreement designed to invest a total of $15 million in HMC’s capital assets to enhance healthcare services.  The intent is for NGHS to acquire HMC at the end of the five -year period, assuming the agreement is finalized and specific terms are met.

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ABOUT HABERSHAM MEDICAL CENTER

HMC, a 53-licensed-bed acute care hospital, serves approximately 80,000 residents in Habersham and adjoining counties. HMC operates Habersham Home, an 84-licensed-bed skilled nursing facility, and HCMC Home Care, the service area’s sole agency for hospital-based home health providers.

ABOUT NORTHEAST GEORGIA MEDICAL CENTER

Since 1951, Northeast Georgia Medical Center (NGMC) has been on a mission of improving the health of our community in all we do. With hospitals located in Gainesville, Braselton and Barrow – the three NGMC campuses have a total of 713 beds and more than 800 medical staff members representing more than 50 specialties. NGMC is part of Northeast Georgia Health System, a non-profit that cares for more than 1 million people across more than 18 counties. Learn more at www.nghs.com.

Copyright ©2020 Northeast Georgia Health System, Inc. | 743 Spring Street Gainesville, GA 30501 | (770) 219-9000

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If you have a fever and cough or difficulty breathing, these steps will help you find the care you need and limit the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in our region:

  • Call before you come

    Please call your doctor's office or an urgent care clinic for advice about where you should go for treatment.

  • Call 9-1-1 for emergencies

    Calling 9-1-1 is always the fastest and most efficient way to get proper treatment for medical emergencies.

  • Consider staying home and taking advantage of an E-Visit

    When symptoms strike, connect with a provider through an E-Visit instead of traveling to the urgent care or the doctor’s office.

    Learn more about E-Visits from these area practices:

We want to thank our community and local businesses for their amazing generosity during this time. Here are some ways you can support our community and staff:

  • Donate items and resources

    We are currently receiving donations of items and other resources through the Foundation. Learn how to donate resources and other needed items by clicking here.

  • Sew Masks for Healthcare Workers

    Many people in our community are sewing masks for our healthcare workers. We have created some mask sewing instructions and information about drop-off locations. Get detailed mask-making instructions here.

  • Send a Digital Letter

    We would like your help making digital letters for the residents at New Horizons Nursing home. Email a letter to NewHorizonsAdmin@nghs.com and we will hand them out to our residents and staff to enjoy.

There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19, so the best way to avoid infection is to avoid exposure. It is always a good idea to keep your guard up—and not just against this virus.

Here are other simple steps you can take to lower your risk of catching or spreading illness.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer after touching tissues.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces to help prevent the spread of germs
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are ill.
  • For those who plan to travel, the CDC offers specific guidance about avoiding COVID-19.

Learn more by visiting the CDC COVID-19 website.

In late January, NGHS created a Coronavirus Task Force including leaders from across the system to begin preparing for the possibility that our facilities and staff may see patients with COVID-19.

We have been following the guidance of the CDC and are working to ensure staff are diligent in following standard protocol to ask patients about their travel history. In the event that additional preparation is needed, this team will move swiftly to follow any new guidance.

About COVID-19 Testing:

NGHS has the ability to coordinate testing at some of our locations. Please call your doctor's office or urgent care clinic for advice about whether testing is right for you. Recently we implemented a new E-Visit specific to the Coronavirus.

Learn more about E-Visits from these area practices:

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