WCA Officials Reflect On ’17, Eye Future Goals

UPMC Chautauqua WCA President Betsy T. Wright speaks during the 23rd annual Meeting of Corporations. Photo by Cooper Miller

UPMC Chautauqua WCA recently hosted its 23rd annual Meeting of Corporations in the WCA Auditorium. The event was attended by various members of hospital staff and leadership, as well as the representatives and board members of the hospital.

The purpose of the meeting was for representatives to share the vision for WCA as well as list achievements that the hospital has made over the past year. Among those who spoke at the event were UPMC Chautauqua WCA Hospital President Betsy T. Wright, Dr. Lyndon Gritters, WCA Services Corporation Chair Diane Wellman, Director of Development Megan Barone, WCA Chief Financial Officer Charles Nazzaro, Chair of the Board of Directors at WCA Steven Kilburn, Chair of the WCA Foundation Peter Stark and Joe Gerace, Starflight Incorporated board member and sheriff .

The event highlighted numerous achievements made by the hospital during 2017. These included breaking ground on a new $20 million addition meant to house women’s and maternity care and an inpatient mental health unit; the beginning of a building project to construct a 20-bed long-term residential treatment program in Chautauqua County for patients recovering from drug addiction; and becoming the first Chautauqua County hospital to receive New York State Department of Health Primary Stroke Center designation, among other accomplishments.

With these recent accomplishments, the hospital generated $213 million in economic activity, while also bringing in 13 new physicians as part of its medical staff in 2017, hospital officials noted.

Hospital statistics for the past year include 319 licensed beds, 6,924 admissions, 651 newborns, 1,291 medical observation cases, 37,693 emergency department visits, 4,121 surgical cases, and 261,157 outpatient visits all done through the work of 1,001 WCA employees.

The meeting focused heavily on patient care, as well as the local benefit and nature of WCA. Wright noted how even though the hospital is part of a larger UPMC system, the focus of WCA has continued to be local.

“Even though we are part of a very large system you’re going to hear more of that our commitment is still to the local health care, our mission is still to improve the health and well-being of Chautauqua County and the surrounding area, and we are still dedicated to compassion and the commitment to quality care and patient safety,” Wright said.

This message of locality was an important one during the meeting as the WCA just recently became part of UPMC in 2017, which is a $16 billion health care provider and insurer. Kilburn reiterated on Wright’s focus and said that while the WCA is part of a larger system, it is still a local hospital and it is one that will continue to work for and serve the people of Chautauqua County and the areas surrounding.

Many other representatives and board members continued to speak at the meeting and spoke on a series of recent hospital accomplishments as well as on plans that UPMC Chautauqua WCA has for the future.