John Biebel, president and chief executive officer of two-hospital St. Joseph's-St. Anthony's Health System in Tampa, Fla., announced he will retire in December after 14 years with the Roman Catholic system.
"Quite frankly, the job just isn't as much fun as it used to be," said Biebel, 53, former chairman of the Florida Hospital Association.
Biebel also is executive vice president of Allegany Health System, St. Joseph's-St. Anthony's parent company. Last month, Howard Watts, an Allegany executive, was appointed president and CEO of the four-hospital system. Watts replaced Sister Marie Celeste Sullivan.
Biebel did not apply for the top Allegany job, said Dave Rogoff, vice president of planning and marketing for St. Joseph's-St. Anthony's. Rogoff also said Biebel's decision to retire had nothing to do with Allegany's ongoing collaborative talks with two separate hospital groups.
Over the past several months, Tampa-based Allegany and four East Coast-based Catholic systems have been meeting once a month to discuss a merger that could link about 30 hospitals in a co-sponsorship model.
Those systems include 11-hospital Eastern Mercy Health System, Radnor, Pa.; eight-hospital Bon Secours Health System, Marriottsville, Md.; two-hospital Sisters of Providence Health System, Springfield, Mass.; and four-hospital Covenant Health Systems, Lexington, Mass.
In the Tampa Bay area, Allegany also is reviewing a plan to merge operations with 16 other not-for-profit hospitals that are part of BayCare Healthcare Network.
The merger plan is a recommendation from a 700-page report prepared by the Hunter Group, a St. Petersburg, Fla.-based consulting firm. A decision is expected to be made over the next six months, said Frank Murphy, president of three-hospital Morton Plant Mease Health Care, Dunedin. The other hospitals include Bayfront Medical Center, St. Petersburg, and South Florida Baptist Hospital, Plant City.