The American Hospital Association's new second in command says her top priority will be working with AHA members to better position themselves for national healthcare reform.
"My goal will be to continue the fine work that the AHA's Chicago office has done on the Tools for Change project to help hospitals take steps to move into the future," said Christine W. McEntee, the AHA's new executive vice president.
Tools for Change is the moniker the AHA is using to describe a repackaged set of old and new membership services to help hospitals create integrated delivery systems and engage in other forms of collaborative activities.
The association named Ms. McEntee on April 28 (May 2, p. 16) to replace outgoing AHA Executive Vice President George Belsey, who announced his resignation on March 28 to pursue other opportunities in the healthcare field.
Ms. McEntee, 38, now is the AHA's vice president and deputy director for federal relations in the association's Washington office. As the new executive vice president, she'll be relocating to Chicago to head the association's Chicago office, which employs about 475 people. She'll also serve as acting president in the absence of AHA President Richard Davidson.
Ms. McEntee will assume her new post on July 1.
Mr. Belsey's announced departure after just two years in the post was accompanied by a heap of praise from the AHA, which said he would be staying in the post through the summer to oversee the relocation of the AHA's Chicago office to a new building.
Seven days later, the AHA named Fredric Entin, the AHA's senior vice president and general counsel, to serve as acting executive vice president "as George moves into his transition" and leaves "sometime in the next few months." Three weeks later, the AHA appointed Ms. McEntee, a member of the AHA's Washington office for nearly eight years, to the post.
The AHA moved quickly to fill Mr. Belsey's post because the continuity of leadership in the Chicago office was a high priority, said Richard Wade, the AHA's senior vice president for communications. And, he said, there was no need to conduct a national search for a replacement for Mr. Belsey when such a qualified candidate was available.
Of the association's seven senior management positions, four are in Washington and three are in Chicago, although Mr. Wade said the Chicago office still is AHA headquarters.
Ms. McEntee said her experience in working for the AHA's Washington office will facilitate a much closer working relationship between the association's Chicago and Washington offices.