SoutheastHEALTH Brings Academic Medicine to Cape Girardeau Forging Collaboration with Pathology and Immunology Department at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis

August 10, 2017
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SoutheastHEALTH announced today another collaboration with Washington University positioned to deliver academic medicine to residents of southeast Missouri. Under a new agreement, they will together create opportunities for young physicians and improve healthcare for patients throughout the region as the Department of Pathology and Immunology at Washington University School of Medicine begins working in collaboration with SoutheastHEALTH Laboratory for onsite Pathology services. 

"We are pleased to work with The Department of Pathology and Immunology at Washington University School of Medicine," said Ken Bateman, president and CEO of SoutheastHEALTH. "This collaboration solidifies our efforts in bringing together the value our community hospital offers with the innovation and excellence of world-renowned academic medicine program.”

Bateman added that highly trained, skilled pathologists – physicians who specialize in the laboratory study of the causes, nature and effects of disease processes through the examination of body fluids and tissues - are key to helping physicians make accurate decisions about the diagnosis and treatment of diseases. The majority of cancer diagnoses are confirmed by pathologists. “Your first diagnosis needs to be the correct diagnosis,” he added. “The expert Pathology team at Washington University will be of great benefit to our patients.”

Under the new collaboration, two Washington University pathologists will be on site at Southeast Hospital. The Hospital also will have access to 40 clinical pathologists working in 20 different subspecialties at Washington University. Through digital-Pathology, specimens can be reviewed in real time with subspecialists as needed.

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Washington University School of Medicine's Pathology and Immunology department is a leading international pathology program. Established in 1916, it was one of the first programs of its kind. In addition to a century-long focus on the relationship between the basic science of immunology and disease, the department is one of the major centers for academic pathology and laboratory medicine in the nation. The department also has played major and pioneering roles in surgical pathology and laboratory medicine. The faculty enthusiastically embraces its responsibility to train the next generation of medical scientists and clinicians by offering contemporary and comprehensive training programs for graduate students, postgraduate trainees and medical students. These exceptional resources are now part of SoutheastHEALTH’s services and makes Southeast a part in training future generations of pathologists.

The collaboration represents another major milestone for SoutheastHEALTH's goal in providing world-renowned resources from a community-based hospital for residents of southeast Missouri. Since Bateman joined the organization in late 2014, his leadership has brought the organization into a position where it is well poised to seek opportunities such as this for growth and increases the value of services SoutheastHEALTH provides. 

Bateman said he's eager to explore the many ways ideas developed by experts at the Pathology and Immunology Department can improve patients' experiences and outcomes at SoutheastHEALTH. 

"We're always asking ourselves how we can improve quality, increase patient satisfaction and optimize the value proposition we can offer our patients," said Bateman. "This agreement, and the experience and expertise the university's faculty and students will bring to SoutheastHEALTH, is an exciting way we can do exactly that." 

George R. Wettach, MD, FASCP, FCAP, a Washington University pathologist who will be based at SoutheastHEALTH, said this collaboration “is mutually beneficial. Of course, our clinicians and patients at SoutheastHEALTH can access world-class academic medicine. In addition, cases from this region help support Washington University’s ongoing missions of patient care, education and research.

“My partner, Dr. Steve LaRue, and I are backed by a full range of technical know-how and subspecialty diagnostic expertise. The digital-Pathology bridge allows us to share high quality images of microscopic sections with our colleagues in St. Louis in real time. Besides slide consults, our fellow faculty members include leading figures in clinical chemistry, molecular diagnostics, transfusion medicine and microbiology. They are never more than a phone call or an email away.”