Remember the first time you saw a bank in a grocery store? Or a Subway in a Wal-Mart? It made sense, because these retailers were joining efforts to target certain types of customers' needs. A shopper could pick up cosmetics and a sandwich for lunch, and everyone won because business was pooled and time was saved.
What the Cleveland Clinic, and others like them, is doing with their partnerships and consolidations is intelligent in that - while you may not need orthopedic care today - your exposure to sprained ankle care increases exponentially with a concentrated medical community. And, doctors collaborate and refer by nature. Thus, the patient will only see his or her outcomes improve with the increased partnerships available through consolidation.
For example, when a new pulmonary specialist group has just been added to a healthcare community, this helps the pediatricians and primary care physicians address asthma conditions via the enlarged network. Not only are the pulmonologists specialized and current in their knowledge base, but the patient finds more efficient and optimal treatment.
The following is an article written by Delos Cosgrove, the CEO of Cleveland Clinic, where he discusses the trend of hospital consolidation: http://www.linkedin.com/today/post/article/20130311203646-205372152-the-great-consolidation-begins.
What is your healthcare system doing to make sure consolidation/acquisition is the best business decision?