Cash-strapped Colorado hospital names new leader

Andy Dreesen is to take over the helm of Leadville, Colo.-based St. Vincent Health, effective Sept. 1, according to a release shared with Becker's.

Mr. Dreesen will take over from interim CEO John Gardner, who was hired in August 2022 to stem some of the financial losses the system was enduring. Mr. Dreesen has been serving as chief administrative officer at Deer Lodge (Mont.) Medical Center, a critical access hospital.

St. Vincent hit the headlines late in 2022 when it failed to make payroll for its employees. The hospital system was also found to have equipment that wasn't stable at high altitude. Leadville is, at 10,152 feet, the highest incorporated city in the U.S.

"It has been my privilege to put retirement on hold," Mr. Gardner said in a statement. "Rural hospitals are struggling everywhere, I wish we could save them all. I am proud of the work we have done together to put SVH on stronger ground."

Leadership and the board of St. Vincent Health are estimating a two- to three-year turnaround of the system's financial issues.

"We still have a way to go, and I am confident that Andy Dreesen can take us to the next level," Mr. Gardner said.

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