In a move to further unify its physician faculty, streamline its operations and improve patient access, the university will complete the merger of its two faculty physician groups--at Bayview Medical Center and the East Baltimore campus--on Jan. 1, 2002. The reorganization formally integrates Johns Hopkins Bayview Physicians into the university, where it will become part of the School of Medicine's Clinical Practice Association, the name by which the combined groups will be known. The CPA will manage the practices of the merged groups, which will be one of the largest academic group practices in the nation.
The merger comes after two years of planning and is designed to strengthen the clinical and academic missions of Johns Hopkins Medicine by broadening the Bayview programs, enhancing teaching and research opportunities at Bayview and bringing these missions in line with those of the School of Medicine.
"With this merger, we combine the strengths of the faculty practices at Bayview and East Baltimore to reflect one voice and develop additional clinical centers of excellence and expand research and teaching opportunities on both campuses. To make all this work, the two physicians' practices had to become one," says Edward D. Miller, CEO of Johns Hopkins Medicine and dean of its medical faculty.
The merger will promote not only a more rational approach to resource allocation, "but more important, our patients will benefit from a greater degree of integration of clinical activities across the Hopkins Medicine enterprise," says Ronald R. Peterson, president of The Johns Hopkins Hospital and Health System and executive vice president of Johns Hopkins Medicine.
The merger brings 310 faculty into the School of Medicine and about 300 administrative and clinical support staff to the university or the Johns Hopkins Health System. Under the merger agreement, the university will assume the assets and liabilities of Johns Hopkins Bayview Physicians, and Bayview faculty and staff will become university employees and come under its benefits systems.
Governance at Hopkins Hospital and the Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center is unaffected by the merger. Department heads at Bayview will be known as clinical directors and will report to the academic chairmen at the School of Medicine. Faculty will continue to operate on both campuses, as they currently do, but patients will now receive a uniform bill from the two campuses.
Greg Schaffer, Bayview Medical Center's president, views the merger as a "major plus."
"We have found that the success of any of the programs at Bayview is enormously enhanced by the relationship between the clinical department director here and the chairman at the School of Medicine," he says.
The current merger follows an initiative last summer that combined the primary care practices of Johns Hopkins Bayview Physicians and the Johns Hopkins Medical Services Corporation to form Johns Hopkins Community Physicians.