Hospital CEOs: Boards lack younger members, term limits, succession plans

Formal succession plans for CEOs and term limits are some of the opportunities CEOs identified as ways to improve hospital governance, according to a survey from the American Hospital Association.

The 2019 National Health Care Governance Survey Report questioned 1,316 CEOs of health systems, subsidiary hospitals and freestanding hospitals on current hospital board trends. The survey aimed to glean information on governance structures at hospitals and health systems, including their composition, oversight, culture, structure and support.

Among areas for improvement, CEOs identified a need to increase the number of boards with term limits and improve age diversity by adding younger board members. The CEOs also said there is an opportunity to institute continuing education requirements for board members and formalize a plan for CEO departures.

CEO respondents did report several positive trends across board types, including the use of executive sessions and board portals, some growth in racial and ethnic diversity, engagement in restructuring efforts to improve governance, and inclusion of board members from outside communities.

For the full report, click here.

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