CFO Richard Rico: Financial Expertise at Sky Lakes Medical Center

Richard Rico, CFO of Sky Lakes Medical Center in Klamath Falls, Ore., has more than 20 years of seasoned healthcare financial experience, and he has proved his versatility in several hospitals across the West Coast.

Richard Rico is CFO of Sky Lakes Medical Center.Mr. Rico began his healthcare finance career in 1990 as CFO of Sacred Heart Hospital & Health Center in Hanford, Calif. Throughout the rest of the decade, he also served as CFO of Lindsay (Calif.) Hospital Medical Center, San Leandro (Calif.) Hospital and several district hospitals in Oregon.

In 2004, he became COO and CFO of St. Anthony Hospital in Pendleton, Ore., which is part of Englewood, Colo.-based Catholic Health Initiatives. After almost three years as CFO of NorthBay Healthcare System in Fairfield, Calif., Mr. Rico tried his hand in the for-profit arena, becoming CFO of McKenzie-Willamette Medical Center in Springfield, Ore., which is part of Franklin, Tenn.-based Community Health Systems.

Since February 2009, Mr. Rico has served as CFO of Sky Lakes Medical Center, a 167-bed independent hospital with more than $200 million in annual net revenue. He believes there are several pressures causing concern among independent hospital CFOs like himself, but he joined the healthcare sector to add value to his and others' lives by tackling those challenges.

"I went into healthcare finance as I felt that was an industry that would continue to exist over the long run and one that you can feel you made a difference in the quality of life for everyone," Mr. Rico says.

Since becoming CFO of Sky Lakes Medical Center, Mr. Rico has helped improve the hospital's days cash on hand from virtually zero three years ago to more than 170 today. He also was instrumental in helping the hospital improve its bond rating from Standard & Poor's. Previously, it was "BB+", which is junk status, but now it stands at "BBB+".

"I believe my turnaround expertise and my ability to lead and motivate people were the primary reasons for the unusually quick and substantial operational improvements at Sky Lakes," Mr. Rico says.

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