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Northern Lake Medical to Join Aurora Health Care
Date:1/8/2009

MILWAUKEE, Jan. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- The physicians of Northern Lake Medical Ltd., a primary care practice with clinics in three northern Illinois communities, announced today that they will be joining Aurora Health Care.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20090108/AQTH553)

The five internal medicine physicians serve patients through clinics in the Lake County communities of Gurnee, Lindenhurst and Fox Lake.

"The Northern Lake Medical physicians have built a reputation for high-quality care and excellent service, and we look forward to working with them and their patients," said Jeff Bailet, M.D., president of Aurora Medical Group.

Mark Tucci, M.D., president of Northern Lake Medical, said that he and his colleagues were attracted to Aurora because it is a physician-led organization that emphasizes continuous quality improvement.

"We know that Aurora Health Care will support our practice and work with us to ensure that our patients receive outstanding care," Dr. Tucci said. "Aurora is a fully integrated system of care that can provide all of the services our community may need."

Nick Turkal, M.D., Aurora's president and chief executive officer, welcomed the Northern Lake Medical physicians.

"This affiliation is an exciting opportunity to partner with physicians who value Aurora's approach to delivering care and understand the benefits our integrated system can bring to their patients," Dr. Turkal said.

"A growing number of Illinois residents are seeking health care services in Wisconsin, and our Kenosha hospital's proximity to communities in northern Illinois makes it an attractive option," Dr. Turkal said. "For Aurora, having physician clinics in northern Illinois will make it easier for these patients to access our services."

Patients of Northern Lake Medical will have access to the services of Aurora physician specialists in the Kenosha area, and also to the full array of hospital services available at Aurora Medical Center in Kenosha. Aurora Medical Center, just off Interstate 94 along Highway 50, opened in 1999. Aurora Medical Center consistently ranks among the top 10 percent of hospitals in Wisconsin for the care provided to patients with the most common admissions, like pneumonia and congestive heart failure. The hospital also is rated as one of the safest hospitals in the state and is nationally recognized for its cancer program by the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. The hospital's services include:

    -- 24-hour emergency care
    -- Beautiful suites for labor, delivery, recovery and postpartum
    -- Medical and surgical inpatient units
    -- Diagnostic services, including digital mammography
    -- A full range of cancer services
    -- Cardiology services
    -- Intensive care unit
    -- Inpatient and outpatient surgery
    -- Women's Health Center

In 2007, nearly 6,000 Illinois residents sought care at Aurora hospitals, resulting in more than 8,500 visits. About 3,700 of those visits were at Aurora Medical Center in Kenosha.

Northern Lake Medical patients requiring advanced treatment options will have access to Aurora St. Luke's Medical Center in Milwaukee, which offers the highest level cardiac care, cancer care and care in the neurosciences and other areas.

In joining the Illinois affiliate of Aurora Medical Group, the Northern Lake Medical physicians follow two family practice physicians in Gurnee, who joined Aurora in October.

Dr. Bailet noted that the medical marketplace in northern Illinois is experiencing significant change amid the area's brisk growth. "The corridor between Kenosha and Chicago's northwestern suburbs is developing rapidly, and people are routinely crossing the state border for health care, employment, shopping, recreation and other purposes," he said. "We will welcome physicians from northern Illinois communities who share our vision of health care and wish to practice with us."

All of Northern Lake Medical's 43 employees will become employees of Aurora Medical Group.

Aurora Medical Group is one of America's largest group practices, encompassing more than 800 primary care and specialty physicians. The American Medical Group Association honored Aurora Medical Group in 2006 with a top national award. In presenting its Preeminence Award, the association praised Aurora Medical Group for its "quality-based, unified culture" and its focus on excellence, service, respect, teamwork and accountability.

Aurora Medical Group is Aurora Health Care's principal group practice. The Aurora organization coordinates patient care across a complete continuum of services, including 13 hospitals, 125 clinics, home health care, pharmacies and other services.

Aurora Health Care is a not-for-profit health care provider and a nationally recognized leader in efforts to improve the quality of care. Aurora offers services at sites in more than 90 communities throughout eastern Wisconsin.


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SOURCE Aurora Health Care
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