By Stephanie Choate
Vermont’s biggest hospital is getting a new name.
Fletcher Allen Partners and The University of Vermont announced on June 19 that Fletcher Allen Partners will change its name to The University of Vermont Health Network this fall. Fletcher Allen Health Care will be renamed The University of Vermont Medical Center.
The move is part of a branding strategy.
“This new name reflects our teamwork—today and for the months and years to come,” said John Brumsted, president and chief executive officer of Fletcher Allen Partners and Fletcher Allen Health Care, in a press release. “Identifying ourselves as The University of Vermont Health Network emphasizes our academic core and signals that we are working together to provide seamless, high-quality care to the people of our communities, no matter where patients go for services within our network.”
Spokesman Mike Noble said the Williston Given Health Care Center will likely get a name change as well, though nothing has been finalized.
Tom Robbins, chairman of the Fletcher Allen Partners Board of Trustees, called the change a “thoughtful, inclusive process.”
“Branding research has shown that when people are aware of a strong university connection, they hold their hospital in even higher regard and are more likely to recommend their hospital to others for their care, helping to keep care close to home,” the press release states.
Fletcher Allen Partners was established in January 2012 to develop a more coordinated system of care throughout the region.
Fletcher Allen was founded in 1995 through the integration of Fanny Allen Hospital, Medical Center Hospital of Vermont (formerly Mary Fletcher Hospital) and University Health Center. The name honored two women, Mary Fletcher and Fanny Allen.
Mary Fletcher gave the money to build a hospital in Burlington in 1876. She named the hospital, completed in 1879, after her mother, Mary L. Fletcher. Fanny Allen was the daughter of Ethan Allen. The Religious Hospitallers of St. Joseph founded the Fanny Allen Hospital in 1894, naming it after Allen, who became a nun and nursed wounded soldiers in the War of 1812.
“Their heritage is going to be preserved and honored,” Noble said. “Their names are not going to disappear into history. We will keep their memory alive in different ways.”
The name change will cost approximately $5.7 million.
One-time capital budget costs for this project across the four-hospital network are approximately $2.8 million over two years. This budget covers major items such as new signage. Additional costs of approximately $2.9 million will be incurred within the hospitals’ ongoing operating budgets for items such as new identification badges, work-related uniforms, and website and communications updates.