Medical center to close Home Health Services

Mayo Clinic Health System in Austin will soon not provide Home Health Services, affecting 60 patients and 11 staff.

The service will be terminated starting June 1, according to a news release issued by the medical center Thursday. Those services will be provided by other local providers, but the medical center’s hospice program will remain open, the release says.

“When we started the home health program 28 years ago, we were one of the only providers of the service in the community. Today, there are at least 12 companies that provide high-quality home care services to the community and it is their only focus,” said Diane Twedell, vice-president of operations at Mayo Clinic Health System in Austin. “As we work to integrate care throughout the community and for the entire population, we are

continually looking for ways to involve other community partners in the care. These providers are able to provide the necessary care efficiently and have a track record of working well with the medical center.”

According to the release, the medical center’s model for providing this type of care was not cost effective and duplicated the work of others in Austin.

Mayo Clinic Health System in Austin will work with the 60 patients involved to transition their care to the provider of their choice, according to the release. Patients will be contacted by phone and with a follow-up letter by mail, which began Thursday. Patients can still be seen through May 31.

Eleven staff members’ positions will be terminated, and those employees will be laid off, given early retirement or transitioned to another position, the release says.

The Mayo Clinic Health System in Austin board of trustees completed a review and approved the closing. Fairmont closed its Home Health program in 2010 and Cannon Falls closed in 2009.

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