UCSF Health and Sonoma Valley Hospital (SVH) have signed an affiliation agreement to create an integrated health care network that will serve the needs of Sonoma Valley residents. The agreement received its final approval by the Sonoma Valley Health Care District Board during its board meeting March 1.
The affiliation aims to improve health care in the Sonoma community by combining the expertise and resources of UCSF Health – the top-ranked medical center in California and one of the top five hospitals nationwide – and the community care focus of SVH to provide a top-quality continuum of care for Sonoma residents.
“Sonoma Valley Hospital, with its engaged management team, board members and community, is the ideal partner for UCSF Health in Sonoma County,” said Mark Laret, president and chief executive officer of UCSF Health. “In today’s highly complex health care environment, hospitals large and small are coming together to provide a full spectrum of care for patients. The affiliation of UCSF Health and Sonoma Valley Hospital offers the best of both worlds – specialty care when needed, and ongoing, high-quality care when patients are ready to return home.”
As part of the proposed agreement, UCSF Health will provide the hospital with a new medical director, replacing Robert Cohen, MD, who served as SVH’s medical director and recently retired. Sonoma Valley Hospital will continue operating as an independent district hospital, with a joint operations committee to oversee the affiliation.
“This affiliation provides us with close ties to a world-class health care system and strengthens our ability to serve our community in a number of ways, enabling access to specialized services not currently available in our region,” said Kelly Mather, chief executive officer of Sonoma Valley Hospital.
The agreement identifies several goals for collaboration between the two hospitals:
- Combine the expertise and resources of UCSF Health and SVH to share best practices and collectively enhance the quality of services in Sonoma Valley.
- Coordinate services for out-of-area transport of sick patients and facilitate their transfer back to SVH when they require less intensive care.
- Enhance the availability of physician and administrative services in Sonoma Valley through joint program development, and
- Increase patient, family and community satisfaction with patient care in the Sonoma community.
The two hospitals have had an informal working relationship for several years in obstetrics, through which UCSF Health has served as a resource for SVH, providing education for OB nurses, supporting OB case reviews and conferring on high-risk pregnancies. This was strengthened in 2015 when SVH joined Canopy Health, an accountable care network of independent hospitals and physicians started by UCSF Health, John Muir Health System and three physician networks (Hill Physicians Medical Group, John Muir IPA and Meritage Medical Network) that now spans the greater Bay Area.
The affiliation is part of UCSF Health’s ongoing effort to meet patients’ full spectrum of health needs through a growing network of high-quality partnerships and providers in areas outside the traditional academic medical model of high-end specialty care. In the past few years, UCSF Health has affiliated with a number of Bay Area providers and health systems, ranging from UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland to John Muir Health, Dignity Health Bay Area, Washington Hospital Healthcare System, Golden Gate Urgent Care and Hospice by the Bay.
UCSF Health includes UCSF Medical Center, which is the top-ranked medical center in California and ranks among the top five hospitals nationwide according to U. S. News & World Report, as well as UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals and additional affiliates throughout the Bay Area. Recognized for innovative treatments, advanced technology, collaboration among health care professionals and scientists, and a highly compassionate patient care team, these hospitals serve as the academic medical center of the University of California, San Francisco, which is world-renowned for its biomedical research, graduate-level education and patient care. UCSF Health’s nationally preeminent programs include cancer, children's health, the brain and nervous system, organ transplantation, and women's health. It operates as a self-supporting enterprise within UCSF.
About Sonoma Valley Hospital: Sonoma Valley Hospital is a 75-bed, full-service acute care district hospital located in Sonoma, California, providing residents of the Sonoma Valley with a broad range of health care services. SVH is known as a warm, comfortable place of healing with a compassionate professional staff dedicated to the needs of the community. In recent years, the hospital has undergone extensive renovation including opening a new wing with a modern Emergency Department and Surgery Center.