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UPMC Pinnacle Lancaster shares transition plan related to closure of former Lancaster Regional Medical Center

LANCASTER — UPMC Pinnacle shared its transition plan related to the closure of former Lancaster Regional Medical Center at the end of the month.

UPMC Pinnacle Lancaster will complete the transition of inpatient and emergency care to UPMC Pinnacle Lititz on Feb. 28. The Lancaster location will officially close at 7 a.m. on the 28th, UPMC Pinnacle officials said in a press release announcing the transition.

“During the transition, patient safety and access are our top priorities, and we are committed to completing these final steps without interrupting patient care,” said Philip Guarneschelli, president and CEO of UPMC Pinnacle. “We look forward to combining the strengths of our outstanding patient care teams and bringing all our inpatient programs to one campus making care more convenient for patients.”

UPMC Pinnacle shared some key upcoming dates and events of which the public should be aware:

  •  On Feb. 15, UPMC Pinnacle Lancaster will stop direct admissions from physicians. Any currently scheduled surgeries or procedures at UPMC Pinnacle Lancaster will proceed, and our patient care teams are dedicated to their care. Emergency Department patients who need inpatient care will be admitted to UPMC Pinnacle Lancaster until Feb. 28.
  • On Feb. 23, EMS and ambulance services will stop bringing emergency patients to UPMC Pinnacle Lancaster. Patients will be taken to UPMC Pinnacle Lititz or Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health (depending on their choice or EMS protocol).
  • On Feb. 27, College Avenue Family Medicine, Regional Neurology and Pain Management Associates, and the residency program will move from the hospital and open Feb. 28 in the Medical Arts Building across the street.
  • On Feb. 28 at 7 a.m., UPMC Pinnacle Lancaster will no longer accept new walk-in emergency department patients.
  • Also on Feb. 28, any remaining inpatients at UPMC Pinnacle Lancaster will be transferred to UPMC Pinnacle Lititz.
  • By Feb. 28, all other services provided at UPMC Pinnacle Lancaster will complete the transition. Affected patients are being notified of the change.
  • Any currently scheduled surgeries or procedures at UPMC Pinnacle Lancaster will proceed, and our patient care teams are dedicated to their care.

Over the past several weeks, UPMC Pinnacle has discussed its plans with emergency medical services (EMS) providers and area emergency departments to ensure that they are ready to handle additional patients. They are also making sure outpatient care remains accessible.

“We are committed to maintaining convenient access to care in Lancaster City and throughout the county with multiple primary care offices in the area, including the new location for College Avenue Family Medicine Practice and our UPMC Outpatient Center at 1160 Manheim Pike in Lancaster,” said Guarneschelli. “We also have 10 primary care practices in the region accepting new patients.”

In the coming months, UPMC Pinnacle will expand the programs currently offered at its Lititz campus: adding ob/gyn and orthopaedic-spine providers and enlarging the oncology treatment space at Lititz.

The hospital is also adding a second cardiac catheterization lab and a second CT scanner, expanding its cancer services, and − pending state approval − creating an interventional and electrophysiology cardiac program.

“With these steps, we are helping ensure the continued availability of high-quality clinical care in the Lancaster community,” added Guarneschelli. “The former St. Joe’s Hospital has been an icon in Lancaster, representing the spirit of compassion and helping others. That spirit of caring is moving to a newer, state-of-art facility in Lititz. There, it can live on, strengthened by the latest tools and services, and continue to serve generations of Lancaster County families.”

UPMC Pinnacle Human Resources also continues to work with affected employees individually throughout the transition to identify opportunities within UPMC.

About 25 percent of the Lancaster workforce accepted severance packages, and an additional five percent have left or will leave the system, Guarneschelli said.

“Fortunately, the majority of employees affected by the hospital changes will be placed in positions within UPMC,” said Guarneschelli. “To date, nearly 70 percent of Lancaster employees will be placed in positions at UPMC Lititz or elsewhere within UPMC Pinnacle.”

For employees commuting to the Lititz campus, UPMC Pinnacle said it is developing a Bus Pass program with RRTA to make the commute more convenient.

The medical records of patients who received care at UPMC Pinnacle Lancaster will be transferred to UPMC Pinnacle Lititz. Patients may request copies of their medical record/health information by contacting calling 717-625-5678, option 1, and request an “Authorization for Release, Use and Disclosure of Health Records” form.

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