Strategic Changes at Pomerene Hospital in Ohio Attract Amish Patients

Over the years, Pomerene Hospital in Millersburg, Ohio, has made several changes to attract Amish patients, according to a Times-Reporter report.

For example, the hospital developed an Amish Service Program that offers self-pay packages with competitive prices for elective procedures. This service was established after Tony Snyder, CEO of Pomerene Hospital, discovered in 2005 that many Amish patients were traveling outside the county for elective procedures to seek lower prices, according to the report.

The hospital also created the full-time position of an Amish advocate, who coordinates the Amish Service Program. The advocate, Laura Schlabach, speaks the German dialect of Amish patients and is familiar with their culture, according to the report. All employees learn about Amish culture in an orientation program.

In addition, in 2006, Pomerene opened an Amish House where Amish family members can stay while their relatives undergo procedures. The hospital also contracted with a transportation service to provide transportation for Amish patients and volunteers.

Amish patients contribute roughly 20 percent of the hospital's business each year. The number of Amish patients coming from out of state has also increased, according to the report.

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