Frank J. Weaver, a hard-driving innovator in healthcare marketing, was buried last week in Dallas. He died June 15 of a heart attack at age 49.
Weaver introduced broad-scale marketing at the Cleveland Clinic in the early 1980s, developing unit pricing for specialized procedures and pushing affiliations with private physicians.
In 1989 he spearheaded an effort to increase the number of patients coming to Dallas hospitals by establishing Dallas Medical Resource, a not-for-profit corporation that markets services to payers around the country. He was president and chief executive officer of Dallas Medical Resource until his death.
Weaver was found June 16 in a hotel room in Boston after he failed to show up for a speaking engagement at a medical outcomes research conference.
Fay L. Hunt, chairman of Dallas Medical Resource, called Weaver a "true visionary" who correctly identified trends five years before the mainstream.
Weaver was recruited to the Cleveland Clinic in 1980 and became director of corporate development and public affairs.
"He introduced the concept of medical marketing in a positive sense," said William S. Kiser, M.D., chairman emeritus of the Cleveland Clinic Foundation. "It was more than just cost reduction. It was quality expected at a reasonable price. It sounds old hat now, but it was unheard of at the time."
The clinic's health affairs chairman, John Clough, M.D., said Weaver was not only one of the hardest workers he's known but also a person who "saw early on the need to form collaborative affiliations and networks."
Earlier, Weaver was director of public affairs at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston.
He grew up in a military family and lived throughout the United States, Europe and Asia. He is survived by his wife, the former Diana Moghissi, and their three sons.