Thirty years ago, civic pioneers were dreaming big. Downtown San Diego increased its footprint with the opening of Horton Plaza, heralding a transformation of the tired civic square. Cross-border commerce expanded thanks to the new border crossing at Otay Mesa, improving the movement of goods to and from the region.
And health care in San Diego took a big step forward as the doctors of Rees-Stealy Medical Group — San Diego's first multispecialty medical group — became part of Sharp HealthCare. On October 1, 1985, the 65 doctors of Rees-Stealy began caring for their patients as the newly formed Sharp Rees-Stealy Medical Group in three locations.
Affiliating with what was then the San Diego Hospital Association (now Sharp HealthCare) was a pioneering alignment. Its unique partnership model of a hospital system and a medical group had health care executives across the country doubting its success.
The affiliation created one of the first integrated health care systems in the nation. Patients benefit from an integrated health care system because they are cared for in a coordinated manner at clinics and hospitals. Although this approach was groundbreaking at the time, today it is becoming the standard of care nationwide, with caregivers working together to ensure that the right person is delivering the right care at the right time.
Three decades later, Sharp Rees-Stealy has grown to 500 doctors and 22 medical centers throughout the county. The growth continues with the construction of a more than 100,000-square-foot site in Rancho Bernardo, which is expected to open in 2017.
"Our partnership with Sharp HealthCare has allowed us to help keep the people of San Diego healthy by giving us the means to expand to all parts of the county with our coordinated care and emphasis on prevention and chronic care disease management," says Dr. Alan J. Bier, president of Sharp Rees-Stealy Medical Group. "Through innovation, partnership and cooperation, we are ideally positioned to meet the challenges of the future."