Ascension Health named five of its executives to oversee regional operations in a half-dozen states as part of a reorganization of the 64-hospital system unveiled in December 2006.
The handful of Ascension executives are the last of nine to be named as ministry market leaders within St. Louis-based Ascension, the nations largest not-for-profit health system. They are: Charles Barnett, 60, president and chief executive officer of Ascensions Seton Family of Hospitals, Austin, Texas; Leo Brideau, 60, president and CEO of Columbia St. Marys, Milwaukee; Vince Caponi, 57, CEO of St. Vincent Health, Indianapolis; Jim Houser, 56, CEO of St. Thomas Health Services, Nashville; and Patricia Maryland, COO of St. Vincent Health Indianapolis region and St. Vincent Indianapolis Hospital.
All appointments, except Maryland, were scheduled to become effective Sept. 1. Maryland will begin her new job Sept. 15.
Barnett will oversee Ascension subsidiaries in Texas. Brideau will have responsibility for the Wisconsin operations. Caponi will oversee two Indiana systems. Housers market includes his Tennessee system and St. Vincents Health System in Alabama. Maryland, who will oversee Ascensions sizable Michigan operations, is the only executive to step down from her prior role following the appointment.
Robert Henkel, Ascensions chief operating officer, said the scope of Ascensions Michigan operationswhich account for 25% of the systems revenueprompted officials to create a full-time market leader for the state. The remaining eight appointees will spend roughly 30% of their time as regional executives, he said. To offset the workload and train future leaders, the newly appointed market leaders will delegate certain responsibilities to others within their systems, he said.
The Catholic system said in December it would overhaul its 38 regional ministries to improve operations and launch a leadership-development initiative. Ascension is known for its strong business acumen (May 14, p. 6).
The shuffling put Laura Kaiser, formerly vice president of health ministry positioning and operations, at the head of Ascensions nonacute-care operations. Henkel and Ascension Senior Vice President Andrew Allen were tapped to jointly oversee the leadership and integration efforts. And Mark Eustis, previously head of Ascensions Great Lakes and mid-Atlantic states operating group, was named head of Ascensions regional ministry operations.
Henkel said the change improves regional executives ability to meet local needs.
The four previously appointed market leaders include Sally Jeffcoat, who was recently promoted to executive vice president and COO of healthcare operations within Ascension. Jeffcoats market included operations based in Tucson, Ariz.; Kansas City, Mo.; Lewiston, Idaho; and Pasco, Wash. The remaining market leaders are: Patrick Madden, CEO of Sacred Heart Health System, whose market includes his Pensacola, Fla., system, and operations based in Jacksonville, Fla., and Mobile, Ala.; John ONeil, CEO of Our Lady of Lourdes Memorial Hospital, Binghamton, N.Y., who Sept. 1 added Bridgeport, Conn.-based operations to his New York market; and Bonnie Phipps, CEO of St. Agnes HealthCare, Baltimore, who is responsible for her system and Providence Hospital, Washington, D.C.