$16 Million Facility will be Joint Venture with Shields Health Care Group and bring a new level of service to the community

Medford, Massachusetts – Just 12 months after affiliating with Wellforce, Hallmark Health today announced a major new investment, filing plans with the Massachusetts Health Policy Commission to build an ambulatory surgery center (ASC) at its Lawrence Memorial Hospital campus in Medford. The proposed 17,500 SF facility, with an estimated total project cost of $16 million, will be developed and managed in partnership with Shields Health Care Group of Quincy. The design of the facility and number of operating rooms is currently being finalized.

“This is a major step in support of our vision to continue a robust healthcare presence in Medford by bringing more of the types of services to Lawrence Memorial Hospital that serve the community’s needs today and for the future,” said Alan Macdonald, president and CEO of Hallmark Health. “There is growing focus on providing greater access to services outside of the inpatient hospital setting. Ambulatory care, including outpatient surgery, urgent care and wellness programs, is often more convenient for patients and can be more cost effective. We are excited to partner with Shields Health Care Group, who is an industry leader in developing community-based ASCs throughout the region.”

Shields Health Care Group has a track record of successfully developing ASCs through joint-venture partnerships with hospitals and providers. Shields Health Care Group brings operational discipline, developing and managing multispecialty ambulatory care facilities that deliver patient-centered medical services more cost effectively. The planned Shields partnership puts Lawrence Memorial Hospital of Medford in the company of other successful Shields projects including the development of a multispecialty ASC in Dedham in partnership with New England Baptist Hospital, and with a new center under construction in Shrewsbury in partnership with UMass Memorial Medical Center.  The ASC is a joint venture project among Hallmark Health, Shields Health Care Group and physician groups including the Tufts Medical Center Physicians Organization. With this project, Tufts Medical Center surgeons will also be performing surgeries and procedures at the new ASC in Medford, saving many patients a trip into Boston.

Hallmark Health and Tufts Medical Center have been partnering on clinical integration of services since Hallmark Health joined Wellforce as a third founding member last January. At that time, leaders from the organizations discussed finding ways to bring specialized care traditionally performed at academic medical centers into the community hospital setting for the benefit and convenience of patients. These efforts include the collaborative Tufts Medical Center Cancer Center in Stoneham, the recent establishment of the joint neurosurgery program at Melrose-Wakefield Hospital, and bringing advanced endoscopy, thoracic surgery and gynecologic services to Melrose-Wakefield Hospital and Lawrence Memorial Hospital patients in the community.

“This is a wonderful example of bringing together the strengths of community and academic medicine to serve patients,” said Norm Deschene, CEO of Wellforce. “Patients expect and deserve great access, convenience, quality and affordability. By working together as Wellforce on this new center, our members are planning for the future of healthcare.”

ASCs are medical facilities that offer less-complex outpatient, or “day -surgery” procedures. Patients arrive, undergo surgery and depart, usually within a few hours.  ASCs have demonstrated an ability to improve customer service and quality while simultaneously reducing costs for procedures appropriate for this setting.

“This is a terrific opportunity for the Lawrence Memorial Hospital, Medford and the surrounding communities,” said Thomas A. Shields, president and chief executive of Shields Health Care Group. “Major stakeholders in healthcare are asking us to move toward value without sacrificing quality, and putting an emphasis on convenience for the patient.  This is exactly the type of service that area residents want, with access to experienced medical professionals within their community.”

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About Hallmark Health

Hallmark Health is a coordinated system of hospitals, physician practices and community-based services providing care for communities throughout north suburban Boston.  Since its inception in 1997, Hallmark Health has been committed to its mission of providing quality care for its communities and achieving clinical excellence for the patients it serves. The system includes Melrose-Wakefield Hospital, Lawrence Memorial Hospital of Medford; Hallmark Health Medical Center, Reading; Hallmark Health Medical Associates; Hallmark Health VNA and Hospice; and Lawrence Memorial/Regis College School of Nursing.

Hallmark Health is a founding member of Wellforce, along with Tufts Medical Center and Circle Health. For more information, visit www.hallmarkhealth.org.

About Wellforce

Wellforce is the health system formed by Tufts Medical Center and Circle Health in 2014. On January 1, 2017, Hallmark Health joined as the third founding member. Wellforce provides hospitals and physicians with a better option for collaboration. Our system brings together the strengths of academic medicine and community care in a model that respects both equally. Our patient-centered, value-driven members are dedicated to providing patients with the highest-level of care when and where they want it. Wellforce includes nearly 3,000 physicians, 12,000 employees, four community hospital campuses, one academic medical center, a children’s hospital and $1.7 billion in revenue.

About Tufts Medical Center and Floating Hospital for Children

Tufts Medical Center is an exceptional, not-for-profit, 415-bed academic medical center that is home to both a full-service hospital for adults and Floating Hospital for Children. Conveniently located in downtown Boston, the Medical Center is the principal teaching hospital for Tufts University School of Medicine. The Medical Center features a level one trauma center with rooftop helipad, the largest heart transplant center in New England and a renowned research program, ranking among the top 10 percent of independent hospitals to receive federal research funding. The Tufts Medical Center Physicians Organization is the faculty practice of Tufts MC with nearly 600 physicians. The 1,800-physician strong New England Quality Care Alliance represents our strong commitment to health in the community. Tufts Medical Center is a founding member of Wellforce, along with Circle Health and Hallmark Health. For more information, visit www.tuftsmedicalcenter.org.

About Shields Health Care Group

A family-owned and -operated business, Shields Health Care Group provides MRI, PET/CT, Radiation Oncology and Ambulatory Surgical Center services at more than 30 locations across New England. Through joint-venture partnerships with as many as 20 top hospitals and healthcare providers, Shields delivers cutting-edge technology, provider expertise and affordability while prioritizing the patient experience above all. Additionally, Shields ProCare offers medical imaging equipment maintenance and service throughout New England. Every Shields center is ACR accredited.

Tufts Medicine Formerly Wellforce