PROVIDENCE – Lifespan has launched its own Women’s Medicine Collaborative, a new outpatient center with all its services under one roof, focused on personalized, comprehensive caring for women at all stages of life.
All of the care provided at the Collaborative will be by women.
The creation of the Women’s Medicine Collaborative reinforces Lifespan’s commitment to a new model of health care – a patient-centered medical home – one that enhances the ways patients can access care as health care delivery continues to shift outside the traditional hospital setting, according to Gail Leach Carvelli, Lifepan spokeswoman.
The new collaborative is being led by Dr. Karen Rosene Montella, Lifespan’s senior vice president for women’s care and clinical integration. Until February, she had served as chief of medicine at Care New England’s Women & Infants Hospital.
“We recognize that women have very unique and specific health care needs. So we were excited to pull together these specialties under one roof to provide women with the best care possible,” said Rosene Montella. “This fits Lifespan’s strategic vision to provide our patients with an optimal care experience that is unique to Rhode Island.”
All 16 of the doctors who are members of the Women’s Medicine Collaborative are former employees of Women & Infants Hospital, according to Carvelli. Physicians and nurse practitioners are all board certified, with many serving as faculty at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.
When asked to comment on this new development and whether it represented a competitive challenge, Women & Infants spokeswoman Amy Blustein said: “While we do regret the departure of some of our providers, we are pleased that we continue to have excellent physicians and staff in our Department of Medicine who are more than able to meet the needs of our patients and referring providers.”
Women & Infants, she continued, “has always been and always will be committed to the health and well-being of the women and newborns of our region. We are already seeing even stronger collaborative relationships, such as the recently announced Integrated Program for High-Risk Pregnancy, a multidisciplinary service offered by our obstetric medicine and maternal-fetal medicine providers.”
Blustein said that Women & Infants understood that women can choose where to receive their health care. “But we are confident that with our 125-year history of caring for women, coupled with our distinction as a US News Top Hospital in Gynecology, Best Hospital in Neonatology, and number one hospital in the Providence metro area, women will continue to rely on Women & Infants as their provider of choice.”
Lifespan’s Carvelli responded to the notion of competition with Women & Infants by saying “the market is changing rapidly.” Lifespan, she said, “is interested in building patient-centered, high quality practices and the Women’s Medicine Collaborative fits into this model and approach to health care perfectly.”
The Women’s Medicine Collaborative programs will include Primary Care, Obstetric, Behavioral and Gastrointestinal Medicine, as well as specialty services. The center is located at 146 West River Street in Providence, near Branch Avenue and Charles Street. The new center embraces a team approach to care, according to Carvelli, with the goal of making it easier to coordinate appointments with specialists and guide patients through the health care system.