FAQ

Below is a list of frequently asked questions and answers to help you learn more about our potential affiliation with Banner Health. You can also submit a question of your own in the box to the right. We will update this page regularly to answer new questions we receive.

Q. What are WMC and Banner Health pursuing?

A. The WMC Board of Directors has announced the signing of a non-binding LOI with Banner Health. The purpose of this step is to allow the necessary time to conduct mutual due diligence and for the opportunity to fully determine the specific terms of a potential affiliation before any final decisions are made. We are excited about Banner’s interest in investing in the future of healthcare in our region and further building on its history of taking care of people in Wyoming.

Q. Why is this happening?

A. WMC has proudly served our community, region and state without using local tax dollars for decades. Today, healthcare is experiencing a time of unprecedented change and transformation. Hospitals and health systems across the country – and especially here in Wyoming – are being forced to do more with less. In order to achieve our vision and keep and grow access to high-quality care close to home, we know that seeing beyond the horizon and working with others is critical. Meaningful affiliations and a willingness to embrace innovative collaboration are required to succeed in ensuring our healthcare future is as bright as possible.

To move healthcare forward, the WMC Board has thoughtfully considered the options and opportunities available to us, including whether an affiliation with a likeminded organization would be the right way to achieve our vision for the future. By taking the next step to conduct mutual due diligence, WMC and Banner Health will be able to more thoroughly determine what the terms of an affiliation could look like and how we can further our commitment to providing local, high-quality healthcare our patients need and deserve.

Q. How was this decision made?

A. Today, healthcare is experiencing a time of unprecedented change and transformation. Hospitals and health systems across the country – and especially here in Wyoming – are being forced to do more with less. Given these challenges, the WMC Board has been engaged in ongoing work to ensure our hospital continues to be well-positioned to care for our patients and communities for generations to come. The WMC Board has evaluated strategic plans over the last five years. As part of this work, our Board has thoughtfully considered the options and opportunities available to us that will move healthcare forward, and planning evolved in April to explore whether an affiliation with a likeminded organization would be the right way to achieve our vision for the future.

Q. What is a Letter of Intent (LOI)?

A. An LOI is a non-binding agreement, allowing for detailed mutual due diligence before any final decisions are made. The LOI does not commit WMC to an affiliation. Rather, this step allows both organizations to spend time to research and learn more about each other and the opportunity to fully determine the specific terms of an affiliation that would advance healthcare in our area.

Q. Why Banner Health?

A. Banner Health’s national reputation, Western roots – including three hospitals right here in Wyoming – and non-profit mission make them a natural partner for WMC to explore. Their expertise, capabilities and understanding the value of our key focus areas is very encouraging for WMC. We are excited about Banner’s interest in investing in the future of healthcare in our region and further building on its history of taking care of people in Wyoming.

Q. What are the details of this affiliation?

A. While we are still determining the details of what this affiliation may look like and don’t yet have all the answers, the following criteria will continue to guide us as we move through the mutual due diligence process:

  • Advanced clinical coordination. Our employees are vital to advancing care in Wyoming, and we understand the critical role our physicians play in delivering care. As we work through this process, protecting our employees and maintaining a strong physician community will be of the utmost importance. The Board continues to be committed to expanding clinical services here in Wyoming as well as maintaining our status as a regional trauma center.
  • Improved business infrastructure. We aim to invest in innovative technologies, as well as the training and development of our workforce, to enhance the care we deliver and keep with the pace of change.
  • Long-term commitment to our community for quality healthcare. Local, high-quality healthcare access is key to ensuring Wyoming is a great place to live, work and raise a family. As we drill down into the finer details, we will remain a trusted community partner that continues to be focused on expanding services that are close to home.
  • Local customization and respect for our history and who we are. Wyoming Medical Center is Casper’s only full-service, non-profit hospital. With a mission-centered calling at our core, we will continue to care for all of our friends and neighbors in need.

Q. What does this mean for employees and physicians?

A. We know that our employees are vital to advancing care in Wyoming, and we understand the critical role our physicians play in delivering care. As we work through this process, protecting our employees and maintaining a strong physician community will be of the utmost importance. In any affiliation, we aim to invest in innovative technologies, as well as the training and development of our employees and physicians, to enhance the care we deliver and keep with the pace of change. Our employees and physicians should know that nothing changes today. Our future is bright, and our work to secure it is ongoing.

Q. What does this mean for our patients and community?

A. We are at the very beginning of a quiet period of mutual due diligence, and we continue to be focused on keeping our patients at the center. For decades, Wyoming Medical Center has proudly served our community, region and state, and we have a long-term commitment to our community for quality healthcare. Local, high-quality healthcare access is key to ensuring Wyoming is a great place to live, work and raise a family. As we drill down into the finer details, we will remain a trusted community partner that continues to be focused on expanding services that are close to home. As Casper’s only full-service, non-profit hospital, WMC will also remain true to our mission-centered calling and continue to care for all of our friends and neighbors in need. Our patients and community should know that nothing changes today. Our future is bright, and our work to secure it is ongoing.

Q. What is the County’s role?

A. Wyoming Medical Center has proudly served our community, region and state without using local tax dollars for decades. As we look toward the future, it’s important to understand that Natrona County owns the land and the facilities associated with WMC but does not provide funding to the hospital. Wyoming Medical Center leases the land and facilities from the County, and the County Commission appoints a Board of Trustees to oversee the land and facility lease agreement.

Neither the County Commission nor the County-appointed Board of Trustees oversees the operations of the hospital. Specifically, WMC has a separate Board of Directors made up of independent, volunteer community members who oversee the day-to-day operations of the hospital and the healthcare services delivered to the residents of our region. It is the WMC Board of Directors that has entered into the non-binding LOI with Banner Health. The County is aware that the WMC Board has taken this step and will be paying close attention as the process moves forward.

Q. Is WMC getting bought by Banner Health?

A. Right now, the WMC Board of Directors is at the very beginning of a quiet period of mutual due diligence in which we will conduct research and hold detailed conversations to determine the specific terms that may be ultimately included in an affiliation with Banner. When we have more details, we will be sure to inform our patients, community, employees and physicians to make sure their questions are answered and create an understanding of what this means for healthcare in our community.

Q. What happens next / How can I learn more?

A. Signing the LOI is the first step in the process, and nothing changes today for our patients, community, employees and physicians. WMC’s Board of Directors and Banner Health are simply in a quiet period of mutual due diligence to conduct research and hold detailed conversations to determine the specific terms that may be ultimately included in an affiliation. Representatives from Banner will visit our community and facilities during this mutual due diligence, and there will be opportunities to engage as the process moves along.

This period is expected to occur through the Spring. When we have more details, we will be sure to inform our employees, physicians, patients and community to make sure their questions are answered and create an understanding of what this means for healthcare in our community. As always, we remain committed to advancing the health and wellness of our region and community and ensuring high-quality healthcare access for years to come.

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