'There is a clear difference between a leader and a boss,' new Morton Plant North Bay Hospital's president says

Brandon May became president of Morton Plant North Bay Hospital in New Port Richey, Fla., in June. Here, he discusses the dearth of sufficient mental healthcare, Americans' biggest worry and the difference between a leader and a boss.

Morton Plant North Bay Hospital is a part of Clearwater, Fla.-based BayCare Health System.

Question: What are some of the key challenges facing your facility today?

BM: There are two items that immediately surfaced upon my arrival to Morton Plant North Bay Hospital. As the delivery of healthcare continues to evolve, coupled with the recent changes to the Florida Certificate of Need requirements, it is important that we are nimble in order to adjust to the needs of a rapidly growing and socioeconomically diverse community.

Secondly, but of no less significance, the mental health and well-being of our community and county is a tremendous concern. It is critical that we, the hospital and BayCare, partner with the community, other healthcare providers, schools, employers and government leaders to meet the needs, compassionately and timely, of those with behavioral health issues.

Q: What are the strategies you are implementing to ensure your facility continues to thrive?

BM: Of the many amazing characteristics that attracted me to BayCare, I was impressed most with the organization's unwavering 'true north' — clinical excellence. We stand by our mission statement to improve the health of all we serve through high quality and compassionate care. This is pervasive and championed at all levels of the organization. Other key points of focus are patient, team member and physician experience.

Q: What excites you most about healthcare today and what worries you most?

BM: Interestingly, what excites me the most is also what keeps me up at night — constant change. There are so many facets to healthcare, from bedside delivery to political reform, that create a challenging yet extremely rewarding environment. One other item that worries me is America worries greatly about healthcare, specifically the availability and affordability. A recent 2019 Gallup poll showed the number [that worry about healthcare] to be 55 percent of Americans. Healthcare has topped the list for the last five years, and the feeling of uncertainty is significant.

Q: What is the best piece of leadership advice ever given to you?

BM: I have encountered a handful of amazing leaders throughout my career, each with a unique style. If I were to encapsulate the theme of each of the messages, the advice would be as follows: There is a clear difference between a leader and a boss. Be humble, be genuine, be inspirational.

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