The No. 1 priority for 2018: 4 thoughts from the C-suite

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Four executives disclosed what issues they're prepping for at Becker's Hospital Review's 6th Annual CEO + CFO Roundtable in Chicago Nov. 14.

The panelists included:

  • Imran Andrabi, MD, president and CEO of Appleton, Wis.-based ThedaCare
  • Karen Teitelbaum, president and CEO of Chicago-based Sinai Health System
  • Larry Goldberg, president and CEO of Maywood, Ill.-based Loyola University Health System
  • Steve Blazejewski, president of global commercial solutions at Cardinal Health

Here are four quotes from the panelists on their top priorities for 2018.

1. "It's about our people … making sure we have the right talent. Making sure we are taking care of the people that are there to provide high-quality care to our community. That's front and center in my mind," Dr. Andrabi said. 

When asked how to better align hospital staff, Dr. Andrabi added, "Just because somebody pays somebody's paycheck doesn't mean that you've become aligned, no matter who they are. You can align around a vision, around a higher calling, around what you're trying to accomplish."

2. "The fundamentals have not changed. How we measure things in the future may change, but it's still about market share. It's still about quality. It's still about access service and financial performance," Mr. Goldberg said. "The thing that is keeping me up [at night] is financial performance. How do we collect money?"

3. "We are 60 percent Medicaid, and about another 8 percent absolutely no-pay," Ms. Teitelbaum said. "Medicaid expansion was extremely favorable to Sinai Health System because of our payer mix. Our uninsured went from about 14 percent to about 7 percent. Seven percent is still a challenge. But now, with all the provisions up in the air, that's a huge issue because we have to keep doing the business we're doing, keep caring for our communities. At the same time, we have to look at alternative scenarios and start preparing for that."

4. "While there are lots of reasons for consolidation, I do think the thing I'm wrestling with right now is: Just because we are bigger, what does it mean to be actually better?" Mr. Blazejewski said. "What does the collection of these capabilities do for us, whether we're providers or manufactures or distributors or some combination thereof? And figuring these things out in this very dynamic environment is going to require a certain kind of adaptability, a new set of partnerships."  

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