2 of 3 Maine hospitals vote no-confidence in system CEO

Less than one week after the medical staff at Bridgton (Maine) Hospital issued a unanimous vote of no-confidence in the health system's CEO, staff at a second hospital within the system voted the same way, according to the Portland Press Herald.

Roughly 15 to 20 staff members at Rumford (Maine) Hospital attended a meeting July 24 to participate in the vote. Several staff members, who asked to remain anonymous, told the publication a few abstained, while the rest voted no confidence in Jeff Brickman, the CEO of parent company Lewiston-based Central Maine Healthcare.

The vote indicates two of the health system's three hospitals have issued a vote of no confidence in Mr. Brickman. Staff members at Rumford Hospital told the Portland Press Herald they recognize the health system's need for change and to save money, but they dislike Mr. Brickman's management style and are concerned about ongoing fiscal issues and cuts in service across the system.

Mr. Brickman was named CEO of CMHC in 2016. Since he began his tenure, several key health system administrators have left the institution, the report states.

One Rumford Hospital physician told the publication the no-confidence vote does not extend to R. David Frum, president of Bridgton and Rumford hospitals. The physician said staff does not feel Mr. Frum is to blame for the hospitals' challenges and that they appreciate his leadership.

Rumford Hospital's no-confidence vote was scheduled to be presented to CMHC board members during a July 25 meeting, which was not open to the public. The health system declined to comment to the Portland Press Herald about proceedings during the meeting.

In a prepared statement to the publication July 27, a CMHC spokesperson said: "We take very seriously the recent activities at Rumford and Bridgton hospitals, which we understand is an expression of medical staff concerns regarding the necessary changes made to ensure the long-term financial health of our hospitals and health system. We are steadfast in our commitment to all CMH hospitals, and our team of clinicians and staff who are devoted to providing the highest-quality care to the communities we serve.

"We realize that the changes have been hard, but we also know that healthcare is changing rapidly and hospitals must adapt to ensure a strong future. Our board members, senior leadership and providers continue to be actively engaged in ongoing efforts to address these concerns and lay the groundwork for a successful future."

Staff at Lewiston-based Central Maine Medical Center, the third hospital in the system, are scheduled to hold their own vote on the issue within the coming weeks, the report states.

To access the full report, click here.

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