Carolyn Roberts officially assumed her post as the new chairwoman of the American Hospital Association last week.
Ms. Roberts, president and chief executive officer of Copley Health System, Morrisville, Vt., predicted in a speech that healthcare reform was likely at the federal level this year and said "effective AHA advocacy and grass- roots support" would be critical to hospitals' influence over the outcome.
"Times are exciting, opportunity is great, the stakes are high," she said.
However, she didn't paint an unqualified rosy outlook for the future. "The outcomes will be a mixture of positives and negatives from the perspective of hospitals," she said. "Such is the nature of pluralism, and pluralism is, on balance, a strength in this heterogeneous society."