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VCU Health System and Sheltering Arms Hospital launch joint venture

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VCU Health System and Sheltering Arms Hospital have formed a joint venture, which could include construction of a new rehabilitation hospital.

“This partnership will make physical rehabilitative care in Virginia among the nation’s best,” John Duval, vice president for clinical services and CEO of VCU Hospitals, said in a statement.

The two health institutions said Monday they have signed an agreement aimed at addressing the need for comprehensive physical rehabilitative inpatient care for patients who suffered a stroke, brain injury, spinal cord injury, and similar illnesses and injuries.

While VCU and Sheltering Arms plan to continue inpatient services at their existing facilities, they said the possibility of a new rehabilitation hospital is being explored.

All outpatient rehabilitation and other service lines will continue to operate independently.

Mary Zweifel, interim CEO of Sheltering Arms, said it and VCU have collaborated on many health issues over the years in providing multidisciplinary treatment programs for patients, conducting research and training physical rehabilitation clinicians and leaders. “This joint venture will further enhance our progress in shaping physical rehabilitative care for the benefit of our patients,” she said in a statement.

Marsha Rappley, CEO of VCU Health System and vice president of VCU Health Sciences, said the joint venture “brings together the brand and clinical reputation of Sheltering Arms and the nationally-ranked research, education and clinical care programs of the VCU Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.”

Founded in Richmond in 1889, Sheltering Arms has two hospitals and 11 outpatient centers, plus community-based programs that include recreational therapy and fitness.

VCU Health System treats patients at several area locations, including VCU Medical Center in downtown Richmond.




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