FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – A Lutheran Health Network patient is voicing concerns about firings and resignations at the hospital system.
There has been a major shakeup at Lutheran over the last two months. It began when a group of doctors made a failed bid to buy the network from Community Health Systems for $2.4 billion.
Soon after, CEO Brian Baur was fired, board members resigned in disgust, and key doctors and administrators have quit. So, what does it mean for patient care?
Alyssa Peacock, a first time mom, is due in October. She originally planned to give birth at Lutheran Hospital, but now questions if she should trust the health of her baby with a healthcare system in turmoil.
She has been counting down the days until she meets her baby girl, since the day she found out that she is expecting. Lately, her focus has shifted to tensions between LHS and its parent company, CHS.
“The more it kind of snowballed the more worried I got,” she said. “I’m concerned that within the next three months, as everything keeps getting stranger and stranger, how it will affect the staff and the morale.”
Peacock said what is most troubling is the lack of communication. Mike Poore, interim CEO at Lutheran and CHS’ CEO Wayne Smith have remained silent.
“People aren’t stepping up to address the community and say, ‘this is what’s happening, this is why it’s happening, and here’s what we’re going to do,’” she said. “They’re not really bridging that gap between the CEOs and us to just fill us in on what’s going on.”
Newschannel 15’s requests to hear directly from Poore have gone unanswered. For weeks we have left messages and sent emails. Poore has not responded. However, Geoff Thomas, Public Relations Supervisor at LHN, issued the following statement, Tuesday night:
“Lutheran Health Network is made up of more than 7,000 employees who come to work every day with an unwavering focus to provide great care and a positive experience for all our patients. These professionals continue to deliver the quality care for which LHN is known. We appreciate the contributions of all of our physicians and those who serve in leadership positions across the network. While there have been some resignations from individuals in these roles, we respect their personal decisions and we look forward to continuing to work with these physicians who remain active members of our medical staffs.”
Peacock said she is considering other hospitals, but that would mean a new doctor for delivery. She’s uneasy about giving birth in uncertainty.
“The comfort of having someone I know, someone who’s been through this with me, go through the whole thing with me, is really important,” she said.