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Aug 1, 2017 3:09 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Southampton Hospital Merger With Stony Brook Medicine Is Made Official On Tuesday

Stony Brook Southampton Hospital. JEN NEWMAN
Aug 1, 2017 3:35 PM

After nearly a decade of discussion and review, Southampton Hospital officially became part of the Stony Brook Medicine health care system on Tuesday, although hospital officials have stated that the transition will have little immediate impact on patients who need care.

The merger of the 125-bed facility located in Southampton Village with Stony Brook Medicine, which includes Stony Brook University Hospital, will have no effect on patient insurance coverage, according to information on Stony Brook’s website. Patients who had in-network insurance coverage at Southampton Hospital before the transition will continue to have in-network coverage at the newly named Stony Brook Southampton Hospital moving forward.

Although Southampton Hospital will now be operated by Stony Brook, all of Southampton’s off-site health care facilities will remain open, and there will be no change in services offered at those locations, according to a community mailing.

Not much of a change is expected for employees, either, at Stony Brook Southampton Hospital after the merger was made official on Tuesday. The partnership now means Stony Brook Southampton Hospital is run by a state hospital and operates under the same license as Stony Brook University Hospital. But Southampton employees will still be private sector employees, so collective bargaining agreements with the public unions at Stony Brook University Hospital and the private sector unions at the former Southampton Hospital will not be affected.

Stony Brook University President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D., said in a prepared statement that he saw the merger as a unique opportunity to bring together academic medicine and community medicine to benefit the region.

Southampton Hospital President and CEO Robert Chaloner echoed Dr. Stanley’s comments, noting that the merger gives Southampton an elevated role to bring academic medicine and patient care to the East End.

“By joining Stony Brook Medicine, the new Stony Brook Southampton Hospital has strengthened its ability to fulfill its 100-plus year mission of providing access to the highest quality health care for the communities it serves,” Mr. Chaloner said in a prepared statement on the merger.

A press release from Lauren Sheprow, Stony Brook University’s media relations officer, cited several new programs that were already offered at Southampton Hospital before final regulatory approval for the merger was obtained by a State Supreme Court justice at the end of June. Those services include a provisional Level 3 trauma center with 24-hour coverage by emergency medicine doctors and a surgeon available within 30 minutes, graduate medical education programs, and a new cardiology practice.

Moving forward, a new cardiac catheterization laboratory, which will be located in the Audrey and Martin Gruss Heart and Stroke Center, is scheduled to open on September 5 and will be the first facility on Long Island east of Route 112.

The hospital’s new Phillips Family Cancer Center, on County Road 39 in Southampton, also is scheduled to open at the end of 2018.

The long-term vision surrounding the deal is the eventual construction of a new hospital facility on the 82-acre Stony Brook Southampton campus in Shinnecock Hills, which is slated to take up about 13 acres of the campus. It is unclear when Stony Brook will make a final decision about the proposal, whose feasibility relied first on the merger and then on the ability to raise some $250 million, the estimated cost of a new facility.

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State takes over Southampton Hospital and somehow the merger is conducted with a virtual media black-out.
By SlimeAlive (584), Southampton on Aug 1, 17 6:36 PM
Any cost savings from the merger? Any elimination of duplicate overhead? Lowered cost through increased bargaining power with labor unions? Increased reimbursement from insurance companies from increased bargaining power? Any reduction at all for healthcare costs for common citizens of the East End?
By dfree (304), hampton bays on Aug 2, 17 5:20 AM
No. If there was, you would know about it by now.
By even flow (448), East Hampton on Aug 2, 17 6:52 AM
How about this:. Everybody who pays property taxes in the Town of Southampton has the right to pay for healthcare insurance at the same rate that the Town pays for teachers, school janitors, police, firefighters, and all Town admin and employees -- not a hand out, just the right to choose among the various and sundry healthcare policies that our taxes already pay for but that we will pay for out of our own pockets.
By dfree (304), hampton bays on Aug 2, 17 7:24 AM
1 member liked this comment