HealthLeaders Media HR - November 2, 2009 | Healthcare Unions Steam Ahead in 2009
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Healthcare Unions Steam Ahead in 2009
John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media

Healthcare unions aren't initiating as many organizing elections now as they have in recent years, but a new study shows that when organized labor picks a target, they usually win. The latest Semi-Annual Labor Activity in Health Care Report found that unions won 75% of representation elections held in healthcare in the first six months of 2009. [Read More]
  November 2, 2009

Editor's Picks
Healthcare layoffs already exceed last year's totals
A report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that the healthcare industry experienced fewer mass layoffs over the past few months, although the number of layoffs is still high compared with past years. Mass layoffs are defined as at least 50 job losses from one employer. Ten mass layoffs occurred at hospitals in September and 14 happened in August. July had the highest total for the year at 21. Ambulatory healthcare settings had four mass layoffs in September and three in August. Another 14 occurred in July. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 127 mass layoff incidents occurred during the first nine months of the year, and only 112 happened in all of 2008. These numbers were as low as 67 in 2007 and 57 in 2006. [Read More]
'Changing the Culture' Easier Said Than Done
How many seminars, Webinars, conferences, newsletters, etc., have talked about the importance of "changing the culture" at healthcare organizations? It sounds easy, almost like moving office furniture around. Nope. My colleague Philip Betbeze has been writing about the departure of Wayne Sensor as CEO of Alegent Health after physicians at the Omaha-based health system served him two no-confidence votes. Wayne is what we call a "rock star" in our little healthcare universe, so his sudden departure was received with shock and disbelief. Ousted CEOs rarely want media attention, but Wayne says he wants to tell his side of the story. [Read More]
Mass. General Stabbing Shows Difficulties in Preventing Violence
A series of unrelated but serious assaults and a fatal self-defense shooting over the past two weeks in Boston-area healthcare facilities provides a frightening example of the physical hazards that many healthcare professionals endure every day. Sadly, it also demonstrates that there is no easy solution to curbing violence or providing security. This is a topic that is not going to go away. We need to find solutions because nobody in the healthcare environment, not patients, or clinicians, or other staff, should feel the threat of bodily harm hanging over them. I need your help. If your healthcare organization has implemented a successful security program, I'd love to hear from you. Please help us pass along the suggestions that will make healthcare delivery safer for everybody. [Read More]
Union claims Temple U. Hospital wants gag on nurses
This is getting uglier by the day. The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that the Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals, which represents 1,500 nurses at Temple University Hospital, has filed a complaint with the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board claiming the hospital is demanding that a gag clause limiting public criticism of Temple or its managers be included in the new contract. Sandy Gomberg, the hospital's interim CEO, says the union has "misrepresented" the intent of the "non-disparagement clause." She said it was not meant to prevent an individual nurse from criticizing the hospital, but to keep union officials from harming the hospital's reputation. The hospital filed a defamation suit against the union in July regarding statements about Medicare funding. [Read More]
Executives on the Move
NASHVILLE: Bracken named new board chairman at HCA
HCA has named Richard M. Bracken as the new chairman of HCA's board of directors, effective Dec. 15. He will replace Jack O. Bovender, Jr., 64, who will retire from the company on the same day. In addition, R. Milton Johnson, HCA's CFO/executive vice president, was elected to the board of directors, also effective Dec. 15. [Read More]

WASHINGTON: Benjamin unanimously confirmed as Surgeon General
The Senate has unanimously confirmed Regina Benjamin, MD, as the U.S. surgeon general. Benjamin, 53, a family physician from Bayou La Batre, AL, gained national attention after Hurricane Katrina for her monumental efforts to reopen her rural health clinic. Benjamin was also the first African-American woman to head a state medical society. She has received the Nelson Mandela Award for Health and Human Rights, and last year received a MacArthur Foundation "genius grant." [Read More]

COLUMBUS, NC: Shull named new president/CEO at St. Luke's Hospital
Kenneth A. Shull is the new president/CEO at St. Luke's Hospital. Shull, who currently serves as CEO of Highlands-Cashiers Hospital, will assume his new role Nov. 30. He has more than 30 years of healthcare experience in North and South Carolina and has held CEO positions at Lexington Medical Center, Stanly Memorial Hospital, and Cannon Memorial Hospital. [Read More]

LEESBURG, FL: Perfumo named new CNO at Leesburg Regional MC
Kathy Perfumo, RN, has been named the VP/CNO of Leesburg Regional Medical Center, part of the Central Florida Health Alliance. Perfumo has over 30 years of clinical nursing and management experience, starting her career in Miami hospitals before relocating to Leesburg in 1992. [Read More]

BESSEMER, AL: McDougal named CEO at Medical West Hospital
Tom R. McDougal Jr. has been named CEO of Medical West Hospital, an affiliate of the UAB Health System. McDougal, who has been serving as the CEO of Springs Memorial Hospital in Lancaster, SC, since January 2008, will assume his new position Jan. 5, 2010. He will take over for Don Lilly, who has been serving as interim CEO since June 1. Prior to his current role, McDougal served as the CEO of Parkway Medical Center in Decatur and CEO of LV Stabler Memorial Hospital in Greenville. He also held positions in the Baptist Health System of South Carolina. [Read More]

DETROIT: Armada named president of Advocate Lutheran GH
Tony Armada, president/CEO of Henry Ford Hospital and Health Network, is resigning Nov. 20 to become president of Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, IL. Advocate Lutheran General Hospital, a 492-bed hospital, is part of Advocate Health Care. At Henry Ford, Armada oversaw an 802-bed hospital and a network of 27 medical centers. [Read More]

NEW YORK: Fraiman to take reins at Cain Bros. & Co. healthcare investors
Healthcare investment bank Cain Brothers & Company has named Robert J. Fraiman, Jr., 51, president/CEO, effective Jan. 1, 2010. The bank's founder, James E. Cain, will continue on the firm's executive committee and remain engaged with clients and in business outreach. Founder Dan Cain will remain chairman of the board and will also remain engaged with clients. The bank also named Jill Frew as managing director. [Read More]

PHILADELPHIA: Tooker to leave ACP
John Tooker, MD, has announced that he will step down as executive vice president/CEO of the American College of Physicians, the nation's largest medical specialty organization and the second-largest physician group. ACP's Board of Regents will form a search committee to select a replacement for Tooker, a process that is anticipated to take approximately six to 12 months. After serving as deputy executive vice president and COO of the organization since 1995, Tooker became EVP and CEO on July 1, 2002. During his tenure, ACP's membership increased by more than 12%. [Read More]

TALLAHASSEE, FL: Florida names new AHCA secretary
Florida Gov. Charlie Crist has appointed Thomas W. Arnold as secretary of the Agency for Health Care Administration, which oversees the state's $18 billion Medicaid program. Arnold, 60, who had been serving as AHCA's chief of staff since 2008, replaces Holly Benson, who resigned. Arnold has spent his career in public health administration. He was the state Medicaid director with AHCA from 2004 to 2007. He also served in the Florida Department of Health as deputy state health officer in 2008, deputy secretary from 2003 to 2004, and director of administration from 1998 to 2003. [Read More]

TUCSON, AZ: Rivers to retire as hospital association CEO
John Rivers, president and CEO of the Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association, has announced that he will retire on Jan. 13, 2011, his 65th birthday. Rivers has led the hospital advocacy organization since 1986. The association's board of directors has appointed a committee that will conduct the search for a new CEO. [Read More]

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