WAUKESHA - A shared
health clinic for municipal workers will still go forward if
Waukesha should pull out of a potential intergovernmental
agreement on the project and adopt an alternative plan for
employee medical care, Waukesha County administrators said
Norm Cummings, director of administration, and
Jim Richter, director of human resources, told Finance Committee
members that the shared clinic would still provide cost savings,
should the Waukesha School District and Waukesha County proceed
together with the project.
the committee that Waukesha was still considered a third partner
in the health-care deal, despite disapproval of the plan from
ProHealth Care officials at the Waukesha Common Council meeting
hopeful the city will become part of the process,” Richter said.
sentiments prompted Finance Committee members to question the
medical provider’s reasoning and the accuracy of what it had
conveyed to the council.
committee approved that Healthstat, a North Carolina-based firm,
was awarded the contract to operate the clinic in a fair manner.
executives told the council they thought a shared on-site clinic
for city employees was a bad idea. The clinic is proposed to be
in the former Public Health Building adjacent to the Waukesha
The clinic was
projected to save the district, county and city more than $7
million over five years in medical cost reductions, with the
city’s share about $1.1 million, according to Healthstat’s
CEO Susan Edwards told the council that ProHealth makes all of
its resources available to city employees.
ProHealth’s chief medical officer, said his group never had a
chance to discuss its response to the county’s request for
proposal (RFP). He said on-site clinics can lead to
"fragmentation of care" when employees come to the clinic for
some services and use their regular doctors for others.
Supervisor Larry Nelson asked Cummings if ProHealth’s proposal
had been fully “explored.” Cummings assured Nelson that it had.
Cummings said ProHealth had an opportunity to discuss its
concerns at a pre-proposal meeting on submitting RFPs, which the
medical provider did not attend.
“I don’t think
the (ProHealth) person that filled this (RFP) out understood
it,” Cummings said.
ProHealth’s chief corporate affairs officer, delivered this
response through email late Wednesday:
“Early on we
shared with Waukesha County officials our view that an on-site
clinic would not be the wisest course, but it was clear that the
county was not interested in considering other options.
before the Waukesha Common Council Tuesday night because city
officials wanted to learn about other ways to improve care and
control costs. ProHealth Care is the health care provider of
choice for about 80 percent of city employees and their
families, so when city officials discuss how best to provide
health care services for city employees, they are talking about
“We want only
what is best for our patients. We proposed that we work with
the city to provide comprehensive services that span the entire
continuum of care.”