Funding Negotiations with Community Medical Centers FAQs

CCFMG and CMC Negotiations Update as of Tuesday, September 15, 2020:

Community Medical Centers and Central California Faculty Medical Group (CCFMG) agree wholeheartedly that putting patients first is, and always will be, the right thing to do. Having that common ground is the foundation and motivation for working toward restoring our partnership. We have a short-term agreement in place that will give both parties more time to work through the finer details of a long-term agreement. In the meantime, CCFMG will resume neurosurgery call coverage to support Community Regional Medical Center’s Level 1 Trauma Center.

Strong, long-term physician and hospital partnerships are critical to our mission and responsibility to our community. We will continue to work together with transparency and in good faith on a renewed partnership and remain committed to training the next generation of talented physicians and providing essential healthcare to Valley residents.

Make a difference. Protect patient care and physician training.

Central California Faculty Medical Group (CCFMG) is a leading health care provider that employs the qualified physicians serving hospitals, outpatient offices and care facilities in Fresno County, including Community Regional Medical Center (CRMC).  Our 230+ physicians and additional practitioners and staff bring expertise in approximately 65 specialties and sub-specialties to the greater Fresno area. Our physicians are UCSF faculty who provide high-quality care and train nearly 300 medical residents and fellows every year in affiliation with the UCSF School of Medicine Fresno branch campus. Our physicians establish roots in the community and understand the health care issues that impact our region.

Despite significant benefits to the community, our future is in jeopardy.

Please read to learn more about this important issue and how you can help support the critical work we do to advance medical education and patient care in the Central Valley.

Founded in 1979 to bring UCSF’s world-class services to the Central Valley, CCFMG is a leading health care provider in Central California. Our UCSF faculty physicians train nearly 300 medical residents and fellows every year through UCSF Fresno, and we also employ the qualified physicians that serve several local hospitals, outpatient offices and care facilities, including 22 private faculty practice sites in Fresno, Clovis and Visalia, as well as Fresno Heart and Surgical Hospital, the Deran Koligian Ambulatory Care Center, Saint Agnes Medical Center, Clovis Community Medical Center and Community Regional Medical Center.

We provide the community with access to more than 230 faculty physicians and additional staff with expertise in approximately 65 specialties and sub-specialties. In addition, approximately 40-50% of the medical residents and fellows trained by our UCSF faculty physicians stay in the Central Valley to care for Valley patients. Through CCFMG’s work to advance health care and medical education in the Fresno region, and our long-term partnerships with organizations such as Community Medical Centers (CMC), our patients receive world-class care.

CCFMG has worked closely with Community Medical Centers for more than 24 years and provides the highly qualified physicians who serve CMC’s hospitals. This partnership relies on a stable, long-term funding agreement that mutually benefits our patients, physicians and CMC. We are committed to maintaining our strong partnership with CMC, but right now the future is uncertain. Although we have a short-term agreement in place that will give both parties more time to work through the finer details of a long-term agreement, the contract that provides funding for some of our physicians at Community Regional Medical Center has expired on September 1, and a new, long-term agreement has not yet been negotiated. This jeopardizes the future of world-class patient care in the central San Joaquin Valley.

Our partnership with Community Medical Centers (CMC) relies on a stable, long-term funding agreement that provides our physicians with the employment certainty and stability they need, especially during the COVID-19 crisis and beyond. On September 1, a contract that provides direct funding for several of our physicians at CRMC expired without a new agreement in place. We now have a short-term agreement to continue funding the 28 impacted physicians in 12 specialties, including pediatrics, oncology and neurosurgery. However, these UCSF faculty physicians still need a long-term funding agreement to continue providing much needed specialty care and to continue their teaching responsibilities.

While we are committed to providing high-quality, specialty medical care, many patients may be forced to travel outside the Fresno region unless a new long-term funding agreement is in place for critical services such as neurosurgery, oncology and pediatric specialties.

Despite a lack of clear direction and confirmed long-term funding support during a global pandemic, our dedicated physicians remain committed to caring for COVID-19 patients. However, we are concerned that funding for a number of our physicians and advanced practice providers will continue to lack stability. A long-term, stable partnership between CCFMG and CMC is critical to ensuring our community has continued access to UCSF faculty physicians who are experts in medical education and patient care.

A stable, long-term partnership benefits our patients, CMC and our physicians. At a time when essential healthcare workers are more vital than ever, it provides our physicians with greater protections and certainty so we can focus on our patients’ health and wellbeing. This stability, along with the prestigious UCSF faculty status and employment benefits CCFMG provides our physicians, is critical to retaining highly qualified health care professionals in an area that is plagued by doctor shortages and barriers to access. CMC benefits from our diverse team of specialty and sub-specialty physicians who bring the unique skillsets that make CCFMG unlike any other health care group in California.

CCFMG was founded in 1979 to bring UCSF’s world-class services to the Central Valley, which has one of the lowest ratios of primary care and specialist physicians per population in the state. As such, our physicians have UCSF faculty status and are needed to teach the next generation of health care providers through UCSF Fresno’s medical education program. A proven residency training program with a robust faculty is a requirement for growth in medical student education in Fresno and the Valley. The loss of long-term funding for any UCSF faculty physicians hinders the university’s ability to continue building this pipeline of new providers, which is critical to addressing our region’s doctor shortage. Of the nearly 300 medical residents and fellows trained by our UCSF faculty physicians each year, approximately 40-50% stay in the Central Valley to care for local patients.

We are working with CMC on a long-term agreement to maintain the critical services funded through the expired contract. While a new contract is not currently in place, we hope to find a mutually beneficial solution that provides all 28 impacted physicians and additional advanced practice providers with greater protections and certainty so we can focus on the health and wellbeing of our patients. In the meantime, we remain committed to educating the next generation of physicians through UCSF Fresno and to providing our patients with the same world-class care they would expect in larger metropolitan cities, without having to travel outside Fresno.

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