Russell Medical in Alexander City has entered into a management agreement to become a member of the UAB Health System following action Tuesday by the respective boards of both organizations.

Russell Medical joins other Alabama hospitals as part of the UAB Health System (UABHS), which includes UAB Hospital, UAB Highlands Hospital, UAB Callahan Eye Hospital and management relationships at Medical West, Baptist Health Montgomery, John Paul Jones, LV Stabler and Bryan W. Whitfield hospitals, along with affiliate relationships with three additional hospitals in the state.

“Russell Medical and the UAB Health System have a lot to offer each other,” UAB Health System CEO Will Ferniany said in a release. “Both parties bring strengths and assets that will improve healthcare in the Lake Martin region.”

The UAB Health System will have representation on the Russell Medical Board of Directors and will work in collaboration with the directors and the existing management team. Under the agreement, UABHS will assist in many of the business aspects of hospital operations, including supply chain logistics, revenue cycle management and compliance issues. UAB will also help with clinical resources such as assistance in physician recruiting and staffing.

Russell Medical is not being sold; the ownership of the hospital and its assets will remain the property of Russell Medical. Employees will remain Russell Medical employees on Russell payroll and benefits. Wage rages and benefits will remain.

Russell Medical has been a strategic affiliate of UAB for several years, participating in cancer and telemedicine networks along with outreach in a number of medical specialties, including cardiovascular care, urology and surgery.

“We have a long history with UAB that has served this hospital and the residents of Alexander City and the surrounding area well,” Russell Medical CEO Jim Peace said. “The new management agreement only strengthens that relationship and will help ensure RM continues to deliver the exceptional medical care that our community expects.” 

The chair of the Russell Medical Board of Directors said he believes the relationship with UAB will enable Russell Medical to leverage its programs, services and resources to assist area residents in achieving their highest level of health and wellness.

“As a part of UAB Health System, we can pool resources and work together to adapt to the continuously changing healthcare environment as a part of their network of facilities,” Hugh Neighbors III said. “We are a cornerstone healthcare provider for the Lake Martin area, and we feel strongly that this relationship will enable us to provide enhanced services with more cost efficient operations.”

Russell Medical will continue to be owned by its parent company, Medical Park Inc., and staff will be employed by Russell Medical with no anticipated changes in benefits or salaries. Physicians seeing patients at Russell Medical will continue to do so.

“As the flagship health enterprise in the state, UABHS has significant resources and expertise which will be available to RM,” UABHS senior vice president for network development Don Lilly said. “We will now be able to offer the knowledge, insights and support of our institution to RM in what is truly a win-win for both hospitals, but more importantly, a win for the people of Alexander City, Tallapoosa County and across the state of Alabama who rely on us.”

Russell Medical offers advanced birthing services along with emergency and surgical care, pediatrics, cancer treatment, cardiovascular/cardiopulmonary services, wound care/hyperbaric medicine and sophisticated radiology and imaging services.