Last November it was announced that David C. Pate M.D., J.D., President and CEO of St. Luke’s Health System, would be retiring at the end of this month. His replacement will be the current Senior Vice President and COO, Chris Roth.
I wish Dr. Pate an enjoyable and well-deserved retirement. But I doubt he will be resting on his laurels. Instead I have every reason to believe that he will continue to be a leading voice providing insights about the latest developments in health care. One clue is that he’s already started a personal blog that will afford him the opportunity to opine on health care policy and law.
As I reflect on this changing of the guard, I’m reminded of a few positive developments that have occurred during his tenure. They include:
Transparency. I always appreciated how Dr. Pate took to social media to share his thoughts about the latest health care developments and provided a platform for other leaders in the organization to share details about new initiatives.
Virtual Care Center. This is one of the most exciting developments to have transpired in the last few years. Being able to leverage telehealth technologies to serve patients in rural parts of Idaho is vital for their receiving the appropriate care at the right time.
Population Health. This has been such as tough nut to crack for most health systems. But, knowing the difficulties, St. Luke’s has fully embraced the challenge of improving the health of the communities they serve. It will be interesting to see if they’re able to move the needle over the coming years.
As Mr. Roth steps into his new leadership role there are some initiatives I would love to see continued and/or restarted. They include:
Increase Collaboration with Medical Technology Companies. I know the organization has partnered with technology companies in the past. This type of collaboration is important for developing technology that meets the needs of patients, family members, and health care providers.
Restart the Center for Health Care Innovation. The organization started the Center for Health Care Innovation online early in the last decade where it operated for several years. Unfortunately, it didn’t survive. My hope is the organization sees the value of restarting the center and using it as a nexus to shepherd innovation efforts across the system.
Continued Transparency. I realize being active on social media isn’t for everyone, so I don’t expect to see Mr. Roth on Twitter. But I hope that he continues to find opportunities to keep the community abreast of the latest developments.
St. Luke’s Health System has seen lots of growth and development under Dr. Pate’s leadership. I have every reason to believe this will be expanded upon by Mr. Roth as he leads the organization into the future.
In closing, I would like to wish both Dr. Pate and Mr. Roth all the best!