Hospital to change name

Published 3:00 pm Saturday, May 21, 2011

A crane from Oronoco-based Schad-Tracy Signs gets set to lift the Albert Lea Medical Center sign in from of the hospital and clinic in the rain on May 14. Next to it is the new Mayo Clinic Health Systems sign. -- Tim Engstrom/Albert Lea Tribune

Albert Lea Medical Center and other programs affiliated with Mayo Clinic will all have a new name starting Monday.

Mayo Clinic’s campuses will all be part of Mayo Clinic Health System, so Albert Lea’s hospital will be Mayo Clinic Health System in Albert Lea. Hospital administrators said the change will reflect how Albert Lea’s hospital has become more than just affiliated with Mayo Clinic.

“We’ve been integrating for many years,” CEO Mark Ciota said. “It’s gotten to the point where the name change reflects much more of a system.”

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Patti Hareid, director of community relations, agreed that the name change reflects how much sharing of resources and education has been happening between affiliates of Mayo Clinic.

Albert Lea and area residents will still see the same staff and personalized care they’ve gotten, Ciota said. One of the biggest changes will be that hospitals in the Mayo Clinic Health System will be able to provide more seamless service to patients.

“When the patient accesses a Mayo site they’ll get the same experience anywhere,” Ciota said. “Providers have assets and knowledge available right there.”

Ciota said the long-term goals of Mayo Clinic are to provide high quality care with excellent service while keeping costs at a minimum. He said Mayo Clinic is one of the best health care systems in the world, and he’s eager for the hospital to continue its partnership.

“From my standpoint as a physician becoming partners with Mayo Clinic there can’t be anything more exciting,” Ciota said.

Hareid said patients will benefit from each hospital in the system sharing best practices and research. She stressed that Mayo Clinic has historically and will continue to put patient’s needs first.

“Mayo Clinic’s primary value is that the needs of the patient come first and that will never change,” said Jennifer Levisen, community relations and marketing specialist.

The hospital will continue to have a commitment to local causes, Hareid said. Projects, initiatives and partnerships will still be a goal of the local hospital.

“That’s who we are and that’s our commitment to the community,” Hareid said.

Albert Lea’s hospital first became affiliated with Mayo Clinic in 1996, and Hareid said there have been many positive additions like the center for wound care and more providers available. She said there will continue to be changes and new standards for patient care with the hospitals new partnership.

Though the name change becomes official Monday, it will be a long process because everything with “Albert Lea Medical Center” printed on it will no longer be used. Albert Leans may have seen the new sign in front of the hospital on Fountain Street, which is just one of the many things they’re replacing.

The hospital launched its new electronic medical records in April, allowing physicians to access patient records from anywhere in the Mayo Clinic Health System. Both the name change and the new record system are part of Mayo’s effort to create a streamlined system.

The medical center’s regional clinics in Alden, New Richland, Wells, Kiester and Lake Mills will also undergo the name change.