LEWES — Beebe Healthcare’s round of expansion recently concluded and now the health system is shifting its focus to a more agile approach to meet the health care needs of Sussex County.
Beebe unveiled its new five-year strategic plan Wednesday on its Lewes campus with the goal of increasing Sussex County’s access to care. Beebe President Dr. David Tam said the health care industry is changing so quickly that brick and mortar facilities may not be the solution in the future as so many patients are receiving care at home or virtually.
Dr. Tam said the new outlook for Beebe will concentrate on “patient-centric care,” as it makes investments in people, infrastructure, technology, innovation, comprehensive services and other partnerships.
“Beebe is embarking on the next phase of the journey but still continuing to provide this same level of care, right to the people,” he said. “The difference now is we’re going to be focused on making sure that it is the right amount of care for the right people at the right time.”
Unlike Beebe’s last five-year plan, unveiled in June 2017, Wednesday’s announcement did not include multi-million dollar projects. The health system is fresh off its largest expansion in its more than 100-year history.
The past few years have seen Beebe open its South Coastal Health Campus near Millville, which features a freestanding emergency department and cancer center, as well as a $124 million specialty surgical hospital between Lewes and Rehoboth Beach. The health system also completed renovations at its Margaret H. Rollins’ Lewes Campus.
With that infrastructure in place, Dr. Tam said Beebe is focused on what it does well, noting it is a primary and secondary care health system, not a specialty health system.
“If we can provide the primary care, the secondary care, the kinds of things that 95% of the time people need, and do it well, that’s what we should focus on,” Dr. Tam said. “The other 2-3%, we need to make sure that those patients can be easily transitioned over to someplace where there are really academic medical centers that are better than any place. People come from around the world to go to some of these facilities. We don’t need to reproduce them. We just need to make sure that there is a way for ‘Mr. Jones,’ who might have one of those conditions, to easily get to one of those places.”
Beebe board member Sara Larch added health care delivery is “shifting away from acute care centers, and out to where people live and work and where people visit,” as the five-year plan looks to give Beebe the flexibility to provide that type of care.
Dr. Tam wrapped up the announcement with five goals for the plan:
• Deliver superior access to care and superior patient experience.
• Enhance and expand core clinical services to better serve the community.
• Develop programs based on patient-centricity and that are inclusive for all people.
• Become the employer and partner of choice in Sussex County.
• Steward resources and promote an agile business model to ensure Beebe’s sustainability and success.