Dear Doctor letter
It has been a little over 2 months since you elected me as your Medical Staff President, Cindy Valukas as Vice President and Kirk Clark as Secretary-Treasurer. I want to thank you for your support in electing us to these positions. It promises to be a busy year as there are many changes happening in the hospital which affect all of us. I will try to keep you updated via e-mail as things develop.
As you know, many of the top leadership positions are changing in the hospital:
- Bruce Crowther is stepping down at the end of the year.
- Steve Scogna, the CFO for the last two years, has moved up to the COO position and is rapidly taking over the duties of the CEO position.
- Dr. Eric Benink has been hired to fill the role of CMO and is very involved in redesigning much of our quality processes. He also will help us review and streamline our Bylaws. A major project Eric will help us with is the installation of a new Peer Review process.
- Two new physician positions have been created, Chief of Medicine and Chief of Surgery, which will help oversee quality projects in these areas.
- We have an open search for a new Chief Nursing Officer. Diane Thompson has been hired as an interim leader in that position.
- We are also looking for a new Head of Nursing in Surgery. Judith Knupp, who held that position for many years, has returned part-time to handle that role for now.
There has been much concern on the part of the Medical Staff and Hospital Staff about the future of the hospital. Steve Scogna has been addressing this topic in several different forums, the most recent being employee Town Hall meetings the last week of February. The medical staff officers sit on the Board of Directors of the hospital and have been involved in these discussions. I can assure you that there are no ongoing plans or negotiations to sell, merge or otherwise affiliate with any other organization. The hospital is financially much stronger than several years ago and we are not forced to make any such plans to survive. That being said, the board is reviewing many different options to see what they feel would be in the best interest for the future of the hospital and the community.
The practice of medicine is changing rapidly and there is uncertainty about what it will look like in the next 5 to 10 years, so long range planning is difficult. All we know for sure is it will not be the same as it has been in the past. One of the biggest changes we have seen here recently is the development of the NCH Medical Group and employed physicians. At a recent meeting we attended, I was surprised to learn that nationally about 50% of physicians are employed. We face a challenge learning how to integrate employed and independent physicians, as it is clear that our hospital will succeed best if it can meet the needs of all physicians in the care of their patients.
I would like to take this opportunity to invite you to attend the next Medical Staff Meeting which will be Wednesday, April 17th. We are going to try something different for this meeting and hold it at Maggiano's in Schaumburg. Those of you who have been on the staffs at Alexian Brothers and St. Alexius will be familiar with this venue. We hope it will attract more physicians to the meeting. You will be seeing more about this meeting in your medical staff mailboxes and by email.
Lastly, I would like to share updates from the March 12, 2013 Medical Executive Committee (MEC) meeting – Click here to view. I will continue to share these updates, as appropriate.
Medical Staff President