Northwest Regional Health, previously known as Northwest Medical Center in Winfield, Alabama, has entered into a management agreement to become a member of the UAB Health System, following action by the respective boards of both organizations.
The agreement, and the name change to Northwest Regional Health, went into effect on Jan. 1, 2022. Northwest Regional joins a growing number of other Alabama hospitals as part of the UAB Health System.
“This agreement between Northwest Regional Health and the UAB Health System will bring the strengths and assets of both organizations as well as the UAB/St. Vincent’s Alliance together to improve health care for the residents of Northwestern Alabama,” said Don Lilly, UABHS Chief Network and Affiliates Officer.
UAB Medicine has already partnered with Northwest Regional for telehealth services, including tele-stroke, tele-critical care, and tele-nephrology with inpatient dialysis.
“We have a long history with UAB that has served this hospital and the residents of Winfield and the surrounding area well,” said Michael Windham, CEO of Northwest Regional Health. “The new arrangement only strengthens that relationship and will help ensure that Northwest Regional continues to deliver the exceptional medical care that our community expects.”
The UAB Health System will have representation on the Northwest Regional Board of Directors and will work in collaboration with the directors and the existing management team. Under the agreement, UABHS will assist in many of the business aspects of hospital operations and will also help with clinical resources such as assistance in physician recruiting and staffing.
Northwest Regional will continue to be owned by its parent company, the Healthcare Authority of Winfield, Alabama, and staff will continue to be employed by the local Healthcare Authority, with no anticipated changes in benefits or salaries. Physicians seeing patients at Northwest Regional will continue to do so.
“UABHS has significant resources and expertise which will be available to Northwest Regional,” Lilly said. “We will now be able to offer the knowledge and support of our institution to Northwest Regional in the same way we work with four other rural facilities in ways that will benefit the community they serve.
Northwest Regional is a 49-bed acute care hospital in Winfield. The hospital provides a full service surgery department, including general, endoscopic, orthopaedic, ophthalmologic, gynecologic and plastic surgery, among other clinical operations. Northwest Regional also has programs in pain management, wound care, sleep medicine and senior care. The hospital provides a level three trauma center, and wellness and specialty clinics.
Northwest Regional recently opened a new four-bed negative pressure intensive care unit and will open an 8,000 square foot 10-bed emergency department and a 10 bed COVID-19/infectious disease unit in 2023.
The UAB Health System includes UAB Hospital, UAB Hospital-Highlands, UAB Callahan Eye Hospital and management relationships with Medical West, Baptist Health Montgomery, Russell Medical, John Paul Jones, Whitfield Regional and Regional Medical Center of Central Alabama hospitals. The system also has affiliate relationships with Infirmary Health in Mobile and Northeast Regional Hospital in Anniston. The system also includes Cooper Green Mercy Health Services and the UAB Health System/Ascension St. Vincent’s Alliance.