UP Health System combines clinical excellence with quality care, as Bell, Marquette and Portage hospitals unite

Bell Hospital, Marquette General Hospital (MGH) and Portage Health celebrated their coming together as a regional health system focused on delivering exceptional patient care through the unveiling of a new name, logo and brand image representing the cohesive service of quality care that is the UP Health System. Bell Hospital and Portage Health are LifePoint Hospitals® and MGH is a part of Duke LifePoint Healthcare.

The unified messaging combines the experience and services of two historic community hospitals, Bell Hospital and Portage Health, with the tertiary care of MGH to provide exceptional healthcare and value to the UP community. Working together, the UP Health System will improve patient satisfaction and focus on delivering exceptional quality care in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

The new logo represents a sense of teamwork and celebrates the opportunities created as Bell, Marquette and Portage facilities move forward with a resolute commitment to quality health services in the UP.

UPHS-Facilities-Gradient“These hospitals represent more than three centuries of combined service in the UP and, together as part of Duke LifePoint and LifePoint Hospitals, we see incredible potential for the long-term impact the UP Health System will have in the region as a unified system of care,” UP Health System President Jim Bogan said.  “Today, we are excited to unveil the visual representation of our hospitals’ partnership and celebrate the leaps forward we are all taking to provide exceptional care in our communities.”

The UP Health System boasts a proud history, built on a tradition of quality care in the UP. In the 1800s Bell, Marquette and Portage hospitals each made a promise to provide high-quality care for their communities. Today, that promise is reaffirmed as these hospitals combine to offer improvements both large and small – like new technologies, enhanced services and a deliberate focus on enhancing the delivery of healthcare to the region.

“Together, we are moving confidently into a future of unparalleled expertise, delivered to the communities we remain dedicated to serving,” said Bogan. “It’s not about big business; it’s about a big idea. With the changes happening in healthcare today, the best way for community hospitals to stay community hospitals is to work together to make our communities healthier.”

As a Duke LifePoint hospital, Marquette has announced improvements including a new $280 million, 279-bed hospital and 80,000-square-foot medical office building. In addition, Marquette announced earlier this year its affiliation with Duke Medicine in Heart and Cancer, home of the Duke Cancer Institute and Duke Heart Center, programs respected worldwide for their clinical excellence and research expertise. At Portage, a $60 million commitment to capital improvements from its joint venture with LifePoint Hospitals® is providing significant investments in technology, equipment and improved facilities. Inside Bell, also a LifePoint hospital, a $5 million commitment to capital improvements will result in investments for physician recruitment and retention, increased scope of medical service offerings and investments in hospital infrastructure.

Visually, the community will witness the impact of the UP Health System’s new logo and brand image in the coming months through new facility signage at each hospital, updated websites and a powerful campaign featuring local patients, doctors and community members highlighting the bright future ahead for the UP. More than an updated look and a new name, the new logo clearly demonstrates a bond with and commitment to the region.

About UP Health System

The UP Health System made up of Bell, Marquette and Portage hospitals, and in partnership with LifePoint Hospitals® and Duke LifePoint Healthcare, is a system dedicated to providing exceptional healthcare and value to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The UP Health System brings unparalleled expertise in clinical excellence and quality care to the UP. The UP Health System is making our communities healthier. For additional information, visit www.uphealthsystem.com.

About LifePoint Hospitals®
LifePoint Hospitals® is a leading hospital company focused on providing quality healthcare services close to home. Through its subsidiaries, LifePoint operates more than 60 hospital campuses in 21 states. With a mission of “Making Communities Healthier®,” LifePoint is the sole community hospital provider in the majority of the communities it serves. More information about the Company, which is headquartered in Brentwood, Tennessee, can be found on its website, www.LifePointHospitals.com. All references to “LifePoint,” “LifePoint Hospitals®,” or the “Company” used in this release refer to LifePoint Hospitals®, Inc. or its affiliates.

About Duke LifePoint Healthcare

Duke LifePoint Healthcare, a joint venture of Duke University Health System, Inc. and LifePoint Hospitals® (NASDAQ: LPNT), was established to build a dynamic network of hospitals and health care providers. The joint venture, which brings together LifePoint’s experience in community-based hospital management and Duke’s world-renowned leadership in clinical service, is strengthening and improving health care delivery by providing community hospitals the clinical, quality and operational resources they need to grow and prosper. For additional information, visit www.dukeLifePointhealthcare.com….

Marquette General, Bell Prepare for Ebola

Marquette General Hospital and Bell Hospital are preparing to identify, assist with diagnosis, and treat potential patients presenting to their facilities with symptoms of the Ebola virus, according to MGH CEO Ed Banos and Bell CEO Mitch Leckelt.

Banos said, “It is important to note that no Ebola cases have been reported in Michigan.  However, we are taking the potential threat seriously, and are implementing the appropriate precautionary measures to keep our staff, visitors and the community safe.”

Screening criteria recommended by the CDC is in the process of being implemented throughout the hospital and its related clinics. Patients are to be screened by staff at all registration points at both hospitals and their related clinics, which includes questioning each patient’s travel history and evaluating the presence of symptoms of the virus.

Leckelt said, “The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state health agencies have provided hospitals with education about the virus for our staff and physicians, screening clinical criteria to identify anyone who may be infected, and instructions about how to assist with the diagnosis and care of patients who present with symptoms of the virus.”


You will see this sign placed at hospital entrances.

Hospital teams consisting of clinicians, infection control staff and other clinical representatives have been meeting in recent weeks and reviewing all information provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and are preparing educational materials and treatment protocols for staff. The hospitals are also working closely with the Marquette County Health Department to coordinate a potential Ebola scenario locally, along with maintaining close contact with the Region 8 Health Care Coalition, which includes all UP EMS and hospitals.

Training for staff on the proper use of personal protective equipment is being planned. The hospitals will ensure their staffs are fully prepared to identify, isolate and care for any infected patients, and to report the illness to infection prevention and public health officials, as required, to stop any further spread of infection.

“Out of an abundance of caution, our hospitals are taking the appropriate steps to prepare,” Banos said. “And we will continue to coordinate with public health authorities on any diagnosis and treatment plans if the situation presents itself in our area.”

Some of the measures being put in place at the hospitals include:

  • Triage and admission assessments are being revised to include questions regarding travel to high risk areas, as well as recent contact with people from those areas.
  • Signage is being placed at entrances asking anyone who has a fever and has traveled outside the country, or who has had exposure to an international traveler to notify staff.
  • Dedicated isolation rooms are designated for patients who may have been exposed to Ebola and protective gear will be provided for our employees.

Here are some important facts about Ebola provided by the CDC:

  • It can’t be spread by a person before he or she exhibits symptoms.
  • It is only spread by direct contact with infected blood or body fluids from a sick person or grossly contaminated objects (like needles).
  • It is not spread in the air, it is not spread in water, and it is not spread by mosquitoes or insects.
  • The incubation period is two to 21 days. Most patients develop symptoms eight to 10 days following exposure.

It is important to remember that although Ebola is a serious illness, at present seasonal influenza is a much greater risk to our local population. Healthcare providers recommend all persons over six months of age get a seasonal flu shot.

For more information, go online at www.mqthealth.org.

Steve Embree promoted to Regional CFO for Three Upper Peninsula Hospitals

Steve Embree, CFO

Steve Embree, CFO

Jim Bogan, Market President for LifePoint Hospitals in the Upper Peninsula recently announced that he has expanded his executive team. Steve Embree, CFO at Marquette General Hospital, has been promoted to Regional CFO for Bell Hospital, Marquette General Hospital and Portage Health, effective immediately.

In this role, Embree will oversee the finances for all three hospitals. He will work directly with the existing finance departments at each facility.

“Steve has over 25 years of experience as a CFO in the healthcare setting,” said Bogan. “His expertise in the areas of healthcare and finances will certainly be a valuable asset as we move forward as a system.”

Embree is a Certified Public Accountant. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree from Michigan State University. He also holds a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Louisiana at Monroe.

“I’m very excited to have this opportunity,” said Embree. “Our leadership team has done a tremendous job positioning our hospitals for growth across the Upper Peninsula. I look forward to providing the financial leadership to drive this growth and expand access to healthcare in our communities.”

Introducing My HealthPoint to Marquette General Hospital & Clinics

We are excited to introduce My HealthPoint to our hospital and clinics! Launching October 13, My HealthPoint is a secure, free, fast and confidential program that allows users to access information about recent clinic visits. Information includes procedures performed during clinic visits, laboratory test results, request appointments and medication refills, and other valuable information. Patients 18 and older will be invited to participate upon check-in.

Current patients of Marquette General Medical Group may be getting an “Invitation from your Doctor to Communicate Online” via email. This is a communication from My HealthPoint — simply follow the links to sign up.

HealthPoint MJ

Construction begins on new helipad at MGH

A mockup of the location for the new MGH helipad is shown above. Construction on the pad began this week and is expected to be completed the first week in November.

A mockup of the location for the new MGH helipad is shown above. Construction on the pad began this week and is expected to be completed the first week in November.

MGH recently added lifesaving helicopter air ambulance service; with a fixed landing pad now under construction in Parking Lot A adjacent to the existing hospital campus. Tentative completion is targeted for the first week in November.

The new helicopter is stationed in Escanaba and will provide 24/7 air ambulance coverage for residents of the Upper Peninsula. The new service is an affiliation between MGH and Valley Med Flight, Inc.

The aircraft is capable of assisting local first-responders, EMS, fire, and law-enforcement by responding to motor vehicle accidents and any other scene response needs as well as helipad-to-helipad patient transportation. Valley Med is the sole owner of the medical transport business and MGH is not subsidizing the cost of the service, but rather acting as a Valley Med emergency transport affiliate location.

“Having an air ambulance will greatly benefit our heart patients,” said Robert Kroll, clinical director of Cardiac Imaging. “Medical transportations that once took a few hours, will now take only minutes. And time is vital when it comes to heart care. We will be able to provide advanced care in a fraction of the time it historically has taken.”

Valley Med Flight also operates a fixed-wing air medical base in Iron Mountain.

Breast Cancer Awareness

At MGH, around 125 women get diagnosed with breast cancer yearly. Danielle Haanpaa, our Cancer Care Coordinator, speaks with TV 6 about the importance of regular self-exams and yearly mammograms for early breast cancer detection.