Columbia St. Mary's and ProHealth Care form partnership to enhance cardiothoracic surgery

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


Columbia St. Mary's and ProHealth Care announced today that they will jointly develop a new cardiothoracic surgery program to better serve patients of both organizations, reduce duplication and deliver greater value in health care.

"We see this as a tremendous opportunity to take our surgical programs to a new level," said Mark Taylor, chief executive officer of Columbia St. Mary's.

Susan Edwards, chief executive officer of ProHealth Care, said: "Working together, we will have the resources and scale needed to create a top-tier cardiothoracic surgery program."

The two organizations, in collaboration with their cardiologists, are working with consultants from PwC to recruit a team of heart surgeons who can meet the highest standards for quality and service. Top heart programs from across the country are being invited to submit proposals.

The physicians who ultimately are chosen will perform heart surgeries and provide related services at the ProHealth and Columbia St. Mary’s hospitals. They will work with cardiologists and others on the existing medical staffs at the hospitals.

Columbia St. Mary's and ProHealth Care do a combined total of about 850 open heart and thoracic surgeries a year. ProHealth Care performs these surgeries at Waukesha Memorial Hospital. The Columbia St. Mary's surgeries are performed at both its east side and Mequon hospitals.

Surgery partnership / Add one
ProHealth Care and Columbia St. Mary’s will jointly oversee the new cardiothoracic surgery program, setting standards for clinical quality, safety and the patient experience. The organizations will work with the surgeons to offer new treatment options and new technologies rooted in the latest evidence-based practices.

“Both of our organizations have extensive expertise when it comes to advanced surgical services,” Taylor said. “One of the things that excites us about this partnership is that it will allow us to share best practices and learn from each other. The result will be superior outcomes for our patients.”

Edwards regards the partnership as the right solution at the right time.

"The challenges we face in health care today require that we think creatively and work cooperatively," she said. "When we consider the imperatives to improve quality, control costs and deliver real value, our partnership with Columbia St. Mary's just makes sense."

Sandra Peterson                              
ProHealth Care                                 
(262) 928-4997                                   

Kathleen Schmitz
Columbia St. Mary’s
(414) 270-4815

About ProHealth Care

As a regional specialty and primary care health network, ProHealth Care offers a full spectrum of integrated services at Waukesha Memorial Hospital, Oconomowoc Memorial Hospital, the Rehabilitation Hospital of Wisconsin, ProHealth Care Medical Associates clinics, AngelsGrace Hospice, ProHealth Home Care and Hospice, West Wood Health & Fitness Center, and Regency Senior Communities. ProHealth Care is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to continuously improving the health of the community. Learn more at



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