Paula Autry to serve as Lutheran Hospital CEO

Fort Wayne, Ind.-based Lutheran Health Network appointed Paula Autry CEO of Lutheran Hospital in Fort Wayne.

Ms. Autry most recently served as CEO of Detroit Medical Center's Sinai-Grace Hospital in Detroit. During her tenure, the hospital became a Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Blue Distinction Center for Cardiac Care and received a Governor's Award of Excellence. Previously, she held leadership roles at hospitals in Mobile, Ala.; Chattanooga, Tenn.; Richmond, Va.; and Columbus, Ohio.

She served on the American College of Healthcare Executives' board of governors as well the American Hospital Association's policy board.

Ms. Autry takes over from Mike Poore, who is president and CEO of Lutheran Health Network. Mr. Poore served as interim leader of Lutheran Hospital since Brian Bauer was fired in June.

Lutheran Health Network has been in a state of conflict with parent company Franklin, Tenn.-based Community Health Systems since earlier this year. CHS rejected a buyout offer from a group of LHN physicians in May, after which, CHS fired Lutheran Health Network CEO Brian Bauer and CMO Geoff Randolph, MD.

Numerous executives and advisory board members stepped down since. CHS and LHN used to have a good working relationship, but the physicians claim that changed when CHS' debt load increased, according to a recent op-ed by physician advocates in The Journal Gazette.

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