Partnership Advisory Group makes progress on NHRMC discussions


WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The saga over whether or not to sell New Hanover Regional Medical Center continued Thursday night as the Partnership Advisory Group made progress, discussing options to remain independent.

The group covered lots of information over the span of two hours, but leaders say it all boils down to what is best for the hospital and the community.

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“Doing nothing is a decision, but it’s probably not a good one,” said PAG Co-chair Spence Broadhurst.

He believes New Hanover Regional Medical Center must adapt to a changing healthcare landscape.

“We’re at 90+ percent capacity right now, with a growing community and the fastest growing segment of our community is the 65 and over segment which requires more care,” Broadhurst said.

Projections show the population could grow by as much as 54% by 2030.

Hospital CEO John Gizdic says patients already have to be set up in hallways on busy days.

“A day in the life of the hospital, you know, 112 admissions per day,” said Broadhurst. “On and on and on about what it looks like at the hospital now, and then what we know for a fact we’re going to be faced with in the future.”

A presentation given to the room showed three different options of remaining independent and how those options could solve current issues.

Coverting to a non-profit seemed to show the best results, but Broadhurst says it isn’t that simple.

“You can look at one part of it and say governance, and say, ‘Well why don’t we just change this?’ Well, that answers some questions, but it doesn’t answer them all,” Broadhurst said.

The group spent about half of the meeting discussing strategic needs, like expansions, preventing staff shortages and more.

That discussion will continue in the next meeting on February 20.

“Then we start talking about the finances, how does that work, it’s very complicated, the reimbursements are complicated,” Broadhurst said.

As far as a possible sale or partnership, out of the 32 organizations that received a request for proposal, 19 have indicated some level of interest.

Those RFP’s are expected back next month.

Click here to see the full presentation from Thursday’s meeting.