North Country Healthcare named Innovator of Year


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North Country Healthcare was recently presented with the Innovator of the Year Award by Quorum Health Resource, a Tennessee-based health care consulting company.

North Country Healthcare is a network of four New Hampshire hospitals — Androscoggin Valley Hospital, Littleton Regional Healthcare, Upper Connecticut Valley Hospital, and Weeks Medical Center — working together to improve quality, increase efficiencies and lower the cost of health care delivery in the North Country.

Warren West, CEO of North Country Healthcare, that, with shared goals to strengthen health care delivery while reducing the cost of providing care, North Country Healthcare is building a collaborative network focused on sustainability and quality care.

Currently the organization is coordinating the activities of the four hospitals in the areas of planning, administration, purchasing, human resources, marketing, finance and contracting. To help carry out this plan, new presidents have been installed at the hospitals. Scott Colby, formerly of Minuteman Health, heads Upper Connecticut Valley in Colebrook. Michael Lee, formerly of Adirondack Health, leads Weeks Medical in Lancaster. Michael Peterson, formerly of Sebasticook Valley Health, guides Androscoggin Valley in Berlin. Littleton Regional has appointed Nick Braccino, the hospital’s former chief financial officer, as its interim president during the search for a new president.

Each new president brings special skills in insurance management and regulation, human resources and recruitment, business growth and accountable care and finance.

West said North Country Healthcare’s plan for 2016-17 includes working on insurance standardization with all four hospitals, developing operating and capital budgets and an infrastructure to reduce costs and improve quality, creating a providers advisory council, establishing a staff development plan to enhance recruitment and staff education, instituting a regional referral system for medical services, and building centers of excellence for specialty medical services. 

“We believe that North Country Healthcare will be a model for other hospitals nationally,” West said. “The road map to our future is strong because we’re taking the innovative, collaborative steps to take care of ourselves.” 

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