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Contents Acknowledgements Editors Anna Adams Kevin Bloye Ethan James Erin Stewart

3 Executive Corner Letter from the President

4 Cover Story

A Passion for Patient Care: Meet the Chair of the GHA Board of Trustees

Designer Carley Elsberry Contributing writers Jeff Sunderland Erin Stewart Tyra Brown Contact us: Georgia Hospital Association 1675 Terrell Mill Rd Marietta, GA 30067 Phone: (770) 249-4500 Fax: (770) 955-5801 Email: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in, or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise) without prior written permission. For permission requests, please contact

9 Our Hospitals 10 14

Names in the News Hospital Spotlight - Archbold Meet the Board

16 Features 18 20

2016 Hospital Heroes Lifetime Achievement Award Winner Bitten by the Health Care Bug

22 GHA Now 24 28 31 32 34 27 39 41

GHA 2016 Annual Summer Meeting Preview 2016 Legislative Summary Economic Impact Report By the Numbers: Getting to know your Hospitals Trustee Certification Compass Practice Transformation Network GHA Set to Reinvent its Digital Presence Georgia Hospital Health Services 2016 Sponsors

Executive Corner Welcome to the first edition of GHA’s new magazine, twentyfourseven. With the complexities of health care and its ever-present changes, we hope this publication will serve as a reminder of one constant in health care: Our Georgia hospitals and the vital care they provide to their communities. We all count on the dependability of hospitals, not only to treat our injuries and sickness, but also to enhance our health and wellness. Hospitals treat every single patient who walks through their doors, regardless of their ability to pay. We can count on hospitals’ commitment to patient care 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – hence, the title of our magazine. From rural to urban and small to large, hospitals are the pillars of their communities. We will be sharing the stories of our Georgia hospitals to let you know about their significant impact and the work they are doing in their communities. In this issue, you will see how Archbold Medical Center is thriving in its rural community and addressing health disparities. You’ll also read about how a chance opportunity at leadership early in her career led WellStar Health System President and CEO Candice Saunders to head one of the largest not-for-profit health systems in the country. We are thankful for their significant impact and the work these hospital professionals are doing in their communities, and I am equally thankful for the work GHA does to support their efforts. Our staff is dedicated to providing the backing our hospitals need to ensure they can remain the constant fixtures their communities rely on. Whether or not you work in the field of health care, I hope you find twentyfourseven to be a beneficial addition to your health care literature. Please don’t hesitate to reach out. We welcome the feedback of our readers.

Earl V Rogers President and Chief Executive Officer Georgia Hospital Association

To find out more about your community hospitals, please visit us online at

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Cover Story

GHA Chair and WellStar President and CEO Candice Saunders, FACHE

A Passion for Patient Care: Meet GHA’s Chair 4

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Candice Saunders got her first experience as a leader rather unexpectedly. It was early in her career when she worked as a critical care nurse in Florida. She not only cared for and treated patients, but, as the unit’s charge nurse, she also helped train fellow nurses in patient care and satisfaction. One day, the head nurse shared with Saunders the unfortunate news that the hospital would be eliminating funding for the training program. By the next day, Saunders would need to quickly transform her role into the nursing director of the hospital’s women and children’s services. Without batting an eye, Saunders accepted the challenge. This early leadership opportunity paved the way for her future role as one of the most influential health care leaders in the community, state and nation.

Saunders’ role as the nursing director was the first of several administrative roles throughout her career. To name just a few of her leadership positions over the course of her more than 30 years in health care, she has served as the vice president of Inova Health System in Virginia; associate vice chair for the Department of Medicine at Emory University School of Medicine; and administrator of Emory Heart Center. Saunders currently serves as Candice Saunders and WellStar Kennestone Hospital employees celebrate the the president and chief executive opening of the new WellStar Cancer Center with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. officer of WellStar Health System in Marietta. She joined the multi-hospital system in 2007 as president of WellStar Kennestone Hospital, the system’s flagship hospital. She then served as the system’s chief operating officer and president before being named CEO in 2015. Since she joined the system, WellStar (which recently become an 11-hospital system with the purchase of Georgia’s Tenet Healthcare hospitals and West Georgia Health in LaGrange) has experienced a great deal of growth, including the construction of two health parks and a pediatric center. For Saunders, the growth means more opportunities for the system to achieve its vision: to deliver worldclass health care. This notion drives her each day and allows her to fulfill her passion of caring for patients. Her career as a nurse not only instilled in her the desire to ensure the best patient care, but it also showed her the positive effect that care and compassion can have on the whole patient experience. Having been on the frontlines of care, she also knows patient care is also about paying attention to the needs of the nurses, physicians, clinicians, and all other staff involved with patient treatment. She enables staff members to take charge of patient care by ensuring they have the tools they need to do so. It’s part of her philosophy that staff members who are committed and dedicated are more empowered and apt to deliver better patient care than staff members who are not as engaged. “The nurses, physicians, advanced practice professionals and all of the individuals who care for patients or support individuals who care for patients are the people I work for,” she says. Nursing turnover can be very expensive for U.S. hospitals, which explains an emerging trend in which hospitals are designing their human resources policies to emphasize positive patient experiences. Many hospitals and systems, including WellStar, are making extensive investments to ensure all staff members not only want to stay at their jobs, but are also fully engaged so they can perform their jobs to the best of their ability. This is why the WellStar Board of Trustees implemented an Employer of Choice strategy at the health system, which makes creating a work-life balance for employees a priority. “We want to recruit and retain top talent,” Saunders said. “A great way to do this is to implement strategies that help our caregivers manage their lives outside of work so that when they are on the job, they are free to focus on their work to care for patients. They can truly focus on delivering world-class health care.” For example, a benefit of working at WellStar is a concierge service that helps employees manage their lives

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outside of work. With a small staff working under contract, a company called Best Upon Request runs errands for employees and patients, all at no cost to them. This allows these caregivers time to focus on the mission and treating patients. “She does a great job of empowering both clinical and non-clinical staff, and our employees know that they are here to either care for patients or help support the people who care for patients,” said Andrew Cox, WellStar’s assistant vice president and Saunders’ chief of staff. “It’s also our job to create a trusted environment where our patients feel that trust among the staff as well.”

Candice Saunders and WellStar West Georgia Medical Center President Jerry Fulks.

Saunders’ hard work in ensuring the full support of patients and staff has resulted in not only enhanced patient care, but also many accolades for the system, which has been recognized several times as a top place to work. In 2015, WellStar was named to the Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For® list for the second year in a row. It has also been named to Working Mother Magazine’s 100 Best Companies, the AARP Best Employers for Workers Over 50 and the National Association for Female Executives (NAFE) Top Companies for Executive Women. Additionally, Saunders herself was recognized by NAFE in 2015 as a Healthcare Champion, one of only 14 women and the only woman in health care.

In addition to constantly striving to find new ways to improve the patient experience, Saunders also finds time to be a mentor to up-and-coming women leaders in health care. She is well known and respected among men and women alike and finds time to pay forward the encouragement and support she received as a young leader. Ellen Langford, RN, MBA, senior vice president and COO of WellStar Medical Group, counts herself as one of Saunders’ mentees and praises her abilities. “Great mentors see potential and have the ability to foster potential we don’t see in ourselves,” said Langford. “She encourages me when I need encouragement and challenges me to think beyond conventional thinking.” WellStar Kennestone Hospital Business Operations Manager Margaret Xu recalls a testing time when Saunders was especially helpful. During the construction of a new patient tower, Xu and her team had to complete the seemingly impossible task of moving patients into the new tower and backfill the remaining towers in three days. With Saunders’ advice and support, the team successfully accomplished the task. “When we felt challenged, her clear direction gave us the confidence needed to make decisions that were in the best interest of our patients and team members,” said Xu. “She’s a mentor who gives true support to her team.”

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Our Hospitals

Names in the News January Along with GHA President and CEO Earl Rogers, five hospital CEOs were named to Georgia Trend’s “100 Most Influential Georgians” list for 2016. Carol Burrell, Northeast Georgia Health System Donna Hyland, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Brooks Keel, Georgia Regents Health System Candice Saunders, WellStar Health System Joel Wernick, Phoebe Putney Health System Shepherd Center Co-founder Alana Shepherd was named to Georgia Trend’s Most Influential Hall of Fame.

April WellStar Health System acquired Tenet Health System’s five Georgia-based hospitals and began a partnership with West Georgia Health in LaGrange, making it one of the largest not-for-profit health systems in the country. Northside Hospital was ranked first in Georgia and 18th nationally in the Forbes survey of America’s Best Employers for 2016.

Stephens County Hospital former administrator Edward C. Gambrell, Jr. was honored by the Georgia State Senate when Sen. John Wilkinson introduced Memorial University Medical Center CEO Maggie Gill was elected as a Regional Chair of the Georgia Chamber Senate Resolution 734. SR 734 honored Gambrell for of Commerce his service to the hospital and community. Piedmont Fayette Hospital became the first hospital in Georgia to be awarded the Pathway to Excellence designation by the American Nursing Credentialing Center (ANCC). The hospital is one of just 137 hospitals worldwide to earn this designation.

May St. Mary’s Good Samaritan Hospital, Clearview Regional Medical Center, South Georgia Medical Center, and Emory University Hospital were named Georgia Coverdell Champion Hospital of the Year award winners for excellence in stroke care.

Navicent Health President and CEO Dr. Ninfa M. Saunders, FACHE and Emory Healthcare CIO Dedra Tift Regional Health System celebrated 75 years of Cantrell, RN, were named to Becker’s Hospital Review’s serving patients. list of “130 Women Hospital and Health System Leaders to Know.” Doctors Hospital of Augusta opened a new pediatric intensive care unit, which replaces what was a regular February pediatric wing with four beds for children who need Archbold Memorial Hospital joined Emory Healthcare’s intensive care. Winship Cancer Network, giving eligible Archbold oncology patients access to therapeutic clinical trials June without having to travel to Atlanta. The Medical Center, Navicent Health was recognized for excellence in lactation care by the International March Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners® and the Chidren’s Healthcare of Atlanta and WellStar Health International Lactation Consultant Association®. System were ranked in FORTUNE magazine’s latest “100 Best Companies to Work For.”

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Our Hospitals

Archbold Medical Center in Thomasville, Georgia.

A Measure of Success:

How a hospital system in rural Georgia is thriving.

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The health care industry is in an age where many rural hospitals around the country have closed or are facing huge financial strains and are struggling to keep their doors open, while at the same time trying to continue providing high-quality services. Archbold Medical Center in Thomasville remains a thriving system that is able to provide top-notch care through its flagship location, John D. Archbold Memorial Hospital, and its three rural hospials, Brooks County Hospital in Quitman, Grady General Hospital in Cairo and Mitchell County Hospital in Camilla. To learn more about the health system’s achievements, how they accomplished them, and what the future holds, twentyfourseven staff talked with Archbold leadership staff, including Archbold President and CEO Perry Mustian; Archbold Vice President of System Hospitals and Long-Term Care LaDon Toole; and Archbold Assistant Vice President of Marketing Mark D. Lowe.

Tell us a little about your hospital system. What is the population size of, and how many counties are in, Archbold Medical Center’s service area? Perry Mustian: Archbold Medical Center is an integrated regional health system with its flagship hospital, Archbold Memorial Hospital, based in Thomasville. Archbold Memorial is a 264-bed acute care hospital and home to the only Level II Trauma Center in Georgia south of Macon. The system includes three hospitals located in neighboring rural counties in South Georgia: Grady General Hospital in Cairo, a 60-bed acute care hospital; and two 25-bed critical access hospitals, Brooks County Hospital in Quitman and Mitchell County Hospital in Camilla. The population of its primary service area, which represents six counties, is around 182,000.

To what do you attribute the success of Archbold Memorial Hospital? PM: Most often, we point to the unique skill, talent and depth of our medical staff as largely why Archbold has remained successful in providing high-quality care to patients in South Georgia and North Florida for the past 90 years.

Archbold Medical Center President and CEO Perry Mustian

The community’s commitment to involvement has also contributed greatly to Archbold’s success. Each year, 50 community leaders volunteer their time to serve on one or more of Archbold’s five governing boards of directors. The dedication and time our board members invest in providing leadership, support, quality oversight and governance has proven vital to the continued success of our organization. The initial gift made by the Archbold family in 1925 provided Thomasville with a sophisticated, state-of-the-art hospital named in memory of their late father, John D. Archbold. Building on that tradition, generous financial support from our community has helped us build state-of-the-art facilities, acquire some of the most advanced health care technology available anywhere, and become the successful regional health care system Archbold is today.

To what do you attribute the rural hospitals’ success, especially in a state with such a high population of uninsured and underinsured? LaDon Toole: There is a critical need across the country for more primary care physicians, particularly in rural areas. Archbold is very blessed to have the support of local universities, colleges and medical schools located relatively close to our primary and secondary markets. These relationships help us recruit highly skilled physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners and other allied health providers that are critical to ensuring patients in rural areas continue to have access to the health care they need. Archbold’s commitment to provide health care services at the health system’s hospitals and specialty clinics throughout the South Georgia region—in Bainbridge, Camilla, Cairo and Quitman—has been essential to the viability of our region’s rural health system. Archbold contributes greatly to the ability to bring health care resources and advanced diagnostic and treatment technology to these small towns, each of which likely wouldn’t have access to the level of health care available if the facilities weren’t part of a large successful health system like Archbold.

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What steps is the system taking to address health disparities and improve population health? Mark D. Lowe: In the past, we’ve primarily addressed improving the health needs of the communities we serve through prevention and early identification efforts outlined in our federally required Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA). Typically, that involved using different methods of health education and offering frequent free health screenings. We’ll continue health education and screenings, but we’re about Archbold Medical Center Vice President of System to launch a new approach for our CHNA. We’ve gathered a small Hospitals and Long-Term Care LaDon Toole advisory group comprised of key community leaders in local government, schools and business—each with unique capabilities, resources and strengths— that we believe can help us improve population health. Acting alone, I think hospital efforts can have some impact on improving health, but working together, I think we can be more successful. This aligned approach helps us share responsibility for changing health behaviors, as well the environment we live in.

How has each rural hospital established itself as a place to be counted on in each of the communities? How have their relationships with the communities helped them thrive? LT: “We have been very fortunate to build strong relationships in the communities where Archbold has system hospitals.” We are committed to working collaboratively with those community leaders and stakeholders to plan for the changes in health care, and to adapt an efficient health care model and affordable health care delivery system that continues to meet the needs of patients in rural Southwest Georgia.

“We have been very fortunate to build strong relationships in the communities where Archbold has system hospitals.”

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Archbold Medical Center Assistant Vice President of Marketing Mark D. Lowe

Grady General Hospital still provides labor and delivery services when several rural hospitals have made decisions to stop providing these services. How have they stayed successful in this area? LT: Many hospitals around the state have either stopped delivering babies or they are in an ongoing process to determine if the patient volume for labor and delivery services provides a sustainable model for the future. Grady General Hospital has remained successful in this sub-specialty because we have a great group of providers who are passionate about maintaining these services. We’ve also been fortunate to recruit and retain family practice obstetricians who take care of whole families and deliver babies, which is a perfect model for a small community like Cairo and a hospital the size of Grady General Hospital. Just a couple of years ago, we were fortunate to recruit an OB/GYN to Cairo, who has contributed greatly to the increase in volume of our Mother/ Baby Unit and outpatient surgery. It’s truly about having providers who are committed to maintaining Grady General Hospital in Cairo is a 60-bed acute-care hospital that still provides labor and the service line, but it’s also delivery services during a time when several hospitals in rural Georgia have made the difficult about the support from the decision to stop providing this type of care. community to use labor and delivery services locally, so small community hospitals have the volume for a sustainable service model.

What does the future hold and how will your hospitals face ever-present challenges, such as declining reimbursement rates and high uninsured and underinsured populations? PM: Hospitals across the country are learning to navigate the biggest transformative change in health care in more than 100 years. In addition, it’s more important than ever for hospitals and physicians to look for new ways to effectively manage disease states and population health, so underinsured and uninsured patients will continue to have affordable access to the care they need. As health care reimbursement shifts from a fee-for-service model to a fee-for-outcome model, hospitals and physicians must explore ways to work together to develop new and efficient processes that positively impact clinical outcomes and patient perception of care.

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Our Hospitals

Meet the GHA Board Executive Committee Chair Candice Saunders, FACHE President and Chief Executive Officer WellStar Health System, Inc.

Chairman-Elect Steven (Steve) L. Gautney, FACHE President and Chief Executive Officer Crisp Regional Hospital, Inc.

Governing Board Ronald (Ron) M. Dodson Southern Crescent Hospital for Specialty Care

Earl V. Rogers President and Chief Executive Officer Georgia Hospital Association

At-Large Trustees

Immediate Past Chair Cindy R. Turner Chief Executive Officer Bacon County Hospital and Health System

Donald (Don) R. Avery, FACHE President and Chief Executive Officer Fairview Park Hospital

AHA Regional Delegate Gerald (Jerry) N. Fulks President and Chief Executive Officer WellStar West Georgia Health

Kevin L. Bierschenk Chief Executive Officer Dodge County Hospital

AHA Regional Delegate Kurt Stuenkel, FACHE President and Chief Executive Officer Floyd Medical Center

Carol H. Burrell President and Chief Executive Officer Northeast Georgia Health System, Inc.

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D. Montez Carter President Good Samaritan Hospital

Gregory (Greg) A. Hurst Chief Operating Officer Piedmont Healthcare

David L. Castleberry, FACHE Chief Executive Officer Optim Health System

James (Jim) L. Matney, MHA, CPA Chief Executive Officer Colquitt Regional Medical Center

Matthew (Matt) Crouch Regional VP, LLHS Peachford Hospital

Robin Rau Chief Executive Officer Miller County Hospital

James (Jim) R. Davis President and Chief Executive Officer University Health Care System

Margaret (Maggie) Gill, MBA President and Chief Executive Officer Memorial University Medical Center

Governing Board Members G. Lamar Lyle Hamilton Health Care System

Marion McMillan, Jr. Monroe County Hospital

John M. Haupert, FACHE Chief Executive Officer Grady Health System

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2016 Hospital Heroes

Hospital Heroes Since 2005, the GHA Hospital Heroes awards program has honored outstanding hospital employees around the state. Each year GHA selects 11 individuals, nominated by their friends and colleagues, to receive this prestigious award. The awards recognize individuals who have given tirelessly of their time, talent and expertise to improve their organizations and the world around them. Over the years, GHA has honored doctors, nurses, volunteers, environmental services staff, social workers, emergency medical services staff, and more from all types of hospitals all over the state of Georgia.

Lifetime Achievement The GHA Lifetime Heroic Achievement Award honors one hospital employee who has dedicated a lifetime of service to a Georgia hospital (at least 30 years) and has made a significant impact in enhancing the operations and patient care of that particular facility. This year’s Hospital Heroes will be honored at a special awards luncheon at the GHA Annual Meeting in November. For more information about the Hospital Heroes awards please contact Erin Stewart at or (770) 249-4513.

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Lifetime Heroic Achievement H. Kenneth Walker, M.D., Deputy Chief of Internal Medicine Grady Memorial Hospital

Hospital Heroes Della Dean, Staff Nurse Piedmont Newnan Hospital

Mike Fordham, Director of Support Services Dodge County Hospital

Leah Henderson, Labor and Delivery Staff Nurse Piedmont Atlanta Hospital

William James, Volunteer Redmond Regional Medical Center

Jennifer Phillips, Medical Social Worker Rockdale Medical Center

Milton Rathbun, Quality Management Director Dorminy Medical Center

Alex Shivers, LMSW, Social Worker Colquitt Regional Medical Center

Robert E. Wilson, Board Member, Quality Committee Chairman DeKalb Medical

Physician Heroes Avril Beckford, M.D., Chief of Pediatrics WellStar Health System

Mac Bowman, M.D., Cardiology, Internal Medicine University Health Care System

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Lifetime Heroic Achievement Award Winner: H. Kenneth Walker, M.D., Deputy Chief of Internal Medicine Grady Memorial Hospital

H. Kenneth Walker, M.D., is a professor of medicine and neurology at Emory University School of Medicine and the Emory Associate Chief of Internal Medicine at Grady Memorial Hospital, both in Atlanta. It is fitting that these institutions are where Dr. Walker’s profession has taken him, given that he earned his M.D. from Emory’s School of Medicine in 1963 and completed his post-graduate training at Grady Memorial Hospital in 1971. Since then, Dr. Walker has dedicated much of his career to the education and training of future medical students. For nearly 40 years, he has served as a professor of medicine and associate professor of neurology at Emory University. He also directed the school’s Clerkship program, in which medical students learn the art of medicine while caring for patients under the direction of faculty, for more than 30 years. He still rounds six months per year on the inpatient wards and has personally trained more internal medicine residents than any other physician at Emory. Thanks to his strong mentorship skills, numerous medicine residents have learned valuable lessons about dedication, professionalism and how to provide patientcentered medical care. Several graduates of the Emory medicine program are currently practicing at hospitals throughout Georgia, and many hold important leadership positions. Dr. Walker’s passion for patient care extends far beyond the state of Georgia and even the United States. In 2004, he was named an honorary citizen of Georgia – not his home state, but the Republic of Georgia, a country more than 5,000 miles away at the junction of Eastern Europe and West Asia. Since 1992, Dr. Walker has led the efforts of the Atlanta-Tbilisi Healthcare Partnership, which is a collaboration between institutions in the Republic of Georgia and their Atlanta counterparts. These include Emory University Schools of Medicine and Public Health, Georgia State University, Morehouse School of Medicine, Grady Memorial Hospital and the Georgia Institute of Technology. Devastated by civil war and economic crisis after the disbanding of the Soviet Union, the Republic of Georgia’s health care and medical education system were in dire need of a transformation. This led to the establishment of the Atlanta-Tbilisi Healthcare Partnership. Since the partnership’s inception, Dr. Walker has been instrumental in aiding the country and improving its quality of health care; he has also had a major impact on the training of medical and nursing students in Georgia. Many endeavors – such as the National Information Learning System, which gives Georgian health care professionals access to

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medical books and journals through the Internet – have been a critical part of this progress. Over the years, more than 20 teams of Emory faculty and staff have traveled to Georgia to assess health needs and inequities. Two grants, both led by Dr. Walker, helped establish emergency medicine as a specialty and improve the nursing profession in the country. Today, Dr. Walker is leading efforts to address a rampant endemic problem of hepatitis C among the Republic of Georgia population. He is working with the Ministry of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the manufacturer of a popular hepatitis C treatment to work on treating the more than 1 million residents with hepatitis C. This number is more than 20 percent of the total population, but Dr. Walker has taken on the challenge of treating every single person in hopes of breaking the epidemic and creating a better quality of life for Georgia’s citizens. In Dr. Walker’s decades of practice, he has affected countless lives, even those individuals with whom he spent only a short time. An example is war veteran Tom McNichol who, in 1965, was a 22-year-old soldier serving in Vietnam. After being diagnosed with pneumonia, he was flown to Clark Air Base Hospital in the Philippines, where Dr. Walker examined him. “I explained my symptoms to him, and he knew exactly what was wrong with me,” said McNichol. “Right away, he diagnosed a blood clot in my lungs and immediately gave orders to administer [blood thinning medication]. Without that diagnosis, who knows what could have happened?” Although they had only this one brief encounter, the way Dr. Walker took care of McNichol has stayed with him. “He treated me and got me on the right recovery path. I’ll never forget him because to me, he saved my life,” he said. GHA is honored to bestow this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award on Dr. Walker. He, along with 10 other Hospital Heroes, will be honored at a special awards luncheon in November.

Top: Dr. Walker (center) with colleagues. (Circa 1975.) Right: Dr. Walker began teaching medicine at the Emory University School of Medicine in 1971. He is pictured on the bottom row, fourth from left. (Circa 1978.)

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Bitten by the Health Care Bug Executive gets Dream Opportunity Nineteen years ago, Tripp Penn was bitten, not by a pesky mosquito or one of the other many annoying flying insects fluttering around Georgia. He was bitten by the health care bug, and this bug has propelled him to his current leadership role in a 115-bed acute care hospital. Penn found his calling while working at Roosevelt Warm Springs Institute for Rehabilitation in Warm Springs. He began in a fundraising and development position that eventually grew into the director of development. “Once I became engaged in the mission at Roosevelt, which is to empower people with disabilities to achieve personal independence, I was completely smitten with health care,” said Penn, who was recently named CEO of Upson Regional Medical Center in Thomaston. “The value and fulfillment you get from serving your fellow man is so rewarding. It’s more than just a job; it’s a way to live out your faith through your vocation.” Penn, who went on to work at WellStar West Georgia Medical Center as a vice president, after his time a Roosevelt Warm Springs, is just one of many leaders whose management education includes Leadership GHA. The comprehensive program, started in 2003, aims to train health care professionals to be leaders in the field. Penn graduated from the program in 2009. To date, 316 individuals have completed the program, with 30 of those working their way to a CEO or equivalent role within a Georgia hospital. “Leadership GHA helped me build a strong network of colleagues around the state and it opened my eyes to the fact that, even though there are a variety of health systems of various sizes, many face similar challenges. It was easy to form a bond with, and learn from, the other participants. The overall quality of the concentrated educational experience was very high and each of the guest speakers was very strong,” said Penn. As with any effective leader, Penn’s great education came not just from the classroom and Leadership GHA. He also had several great mentors: “At Roosevelt, CEO Frank Ruzycki and Board Chairman Bruce Williams saw more in me as a young leader than I recognized in myself. Board members such as Smith Lanier and Steve Melton helped broaden my perspective,” he added.

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“Jerry Fulks, CEO at WellStar West Georgia Medical Center, has been an incredible source of support and encouragement for me over the past 13 years. He also provided a great example for me, showing that you can be a strong leader and still be a decent person. I’ve also been fortunate to spend a good bit of time with, and learn from, Dr. Jim Tally, the former CEO at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. “As far as a support system, I feel lucky to have a close group of friends and family, including my wife Megan and our three children [Riley, Miller and Hannah], who love and support me unconditionally.” Now, the health care executive turns the page to a new chapter in his life, one that takes him east to Upson Regional. There, he hopes to continue to build upon a winning culture – working toward delivering increased levels of quality care and service with greater efficiency. “All the pieces are here,” said Penn. “We have a strong leadership team in place, an excellent Board, and quality physicians. I’m excited to be a part of such a strong organization. This is a wonderful opportunity, and I’m excited about developing relationships at Upson and being part of the Thomaston community.” Penn is looking forward to the future and is ready for the challenges he will face. “Like other hospitals, we will have to figure out how to provide better care for more patients and at less cost. Physician and workforce recruitment will continue to be challenging for rural hospitals. Nevertheless, Upson is well-equipped to face these challenges and will continue to thrive.”

Leadership GHA Established in 2003, Leadership GHA is an annual six-month program designed to identify, develop and inspire new leaders in health care throughout the state of Georgia. Through several techniques, participants are educated on the unique and diverse issues of Georgia’s health care system. The program includes workshops, conferences, panel discussions and field trips to a variety of hospitals and health systems throughout the state. Participants develop leadership skills and are encouraged to use them to transform and improve their individual communities as well as Georgia’s health care system. To qualify for participation, individuals from Georgia hospitals and health systems are nominated by GHA-member CEOs. Nominees are sent an application for participation and an impartial selection committee reviews the applications. A limited number of participants are selected for the program, which runs from August to January. To date, more than 60 participants have gone on to hold positions at the C-suite level. For more information, contact Vice President of Educational Services, Martha Harrell, at (770) 249-4517 or

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Georgia Hospital Association 2016 Annual Summer Meeting GHA and members will convene in beautiful Amelia Island, Fla., for its annual summer meeting. Please plan to join your peers to take advantage of the exceptional networking opportunities and education that you have come to expect from GHA. Why You’ll Want to Attend: 1. Learn about the “new health economy” and what it means for hospitals. 2. See a dynamic presentation on the current unconventional political trends. 3. Look towards the future and examine health care trends. 4. Hear an inspirational talk during the Prayer Breakfast. 5. Network with your peers in a casual setting.

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July 13-15 Omni Amelia Island Plantation Amelia Island, FL

Jane Sarasohn-Kahn, Health Economist The New Health Economy: Consumers at the Center The new health economy has arrived—in the form of rapidly advancing care technology, growing consumer empowerment through mobile health apps, the rise of health care companies from the retail sector, the boom of personal health, and the growth of non-traditional partnerships in care delivery and financing. The consumer, facing more out-of-pocket costs and first-dollar financial responsibilities in high-deductible health plans, is looking for a more retail-facing experience from the health system. All of this and more will disruptively innovate hospitals and health systems. Learn what it means—now and in the future.

Charlie Cook, Editor & Publisher The Cook Political Report A Time Like No Other: An Analysis of America’s Political Landscape Widely regarded as one of the nation’s keenest observers of U.S. elections and political trends, Charlie Cook shares his encyclopedic knowledge of American politics, memorable stories, quick wit, and meaningful insights to provide the sharpest political handicapping in the country. His presentation is a “lay of the land” for the upcoming elections, including what key dynamics are driving and affecting the Democratic and Republican nomination choices. With both the Democratic and Republican Conventions on the heels of our program, his insights on the upcoming Presidential contest and what the results will mean for the two parties (and the American people) should be quite interesting.

Coach Bill Curry Football coach and former player Bill Curry, a 1965 Georgia Tech graduate, two-time Super Bowl winner, and two-time Pro Bowl Center played for coaching greats Bobby Dodd, Vince Lombardi and Don Shula. He went on to coach at Georgia Tech, restoring them to national prominence in the 1980s; the University of Alabama where he won a share of the 1989 SEC title; the University of Kentucky; and Georgia State University. While most outsiders know Curry for his success as a player and coach, those who know him best appreciate him for his character, integrity and faith in Christ. GHA is honored to have Coach Curry share his life-long journey of faith and football.

Elizabeth Summy, CAE, Vice President and COO, American College of Healthcare Executives Futurescan – Dimensions of Change: Transformation in the Healthcare Marketplace This review of selected health care trends will help you plan for the future. Developed by a panel of experts, Futurescan highlights key trend areas that are impacting the nation’s health care organizations, such as behavioral health; the patient experience; capital strategies; leading the change from volume to value; the rise of accelerators; reengineering; promoting health; and new payment models.

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Legislative Summary Letter from the President During the 40 days of the 2016 Georgia General Assembly’s Legislative Session, hospitals faced a wide spectrum of challenges that threatened Georgia’s health care communities. With your tremendous support, GHA successfully restrained legislation that would have abolished Georgia’s Certificate of Need (CON) program and worked to pass the Rural Hospital Tax Credit, which has the potential to boost the economies of rural areas. GHA could not have accomplished any of this without our members’ help, and I am proud that our hospitals came together to support high-quality health care for all Georgians. CON opponents, specifically CTCA, worked to deteriorate Georgia’s CON program through a Department of Community Health Board ruling while legislators were out of session during the summer of 2015. This attempt to override the legislative process failed as the Georgia hospital community united to successfully defend the CON program. GHA will continue to educate lawmakers on the important role hospitals play in providing all communities, including the most vulnerable populations – the uninsured, the poor, the elderly and the disabled – access to high-quality care. Changes to CON threaten hospitals’ abilities to provide essential and basic services on which these patients rely. I am particularly proud of Georgia’s legislators and Georgia hospitals for recognizing the continued financial challenges rural hospitals face. The passage of the Rural Hospital Tax Credit will bring more financial assistance to rural hospitals through direct donations and fundraising efforts. Individuals and corporations who donate will receive a substantial tax credit for their financial support. Creative initiatives like this will continue to help Georgia’s rural population with access to the best health care. GHA is proud to participate in the Georgia Chamber of Commerce Quality Health Care Access Task Force, which is continuing to explore alternative solutions for the uninsured and underinsured crisis Georgia faces. All of Georgia is affected by higher health insurance premiums and the corresponding cost shift on employersponsored health insurance. During the 2016 session, Senate Resolution 1056, sponsored by Senator Michael Rhett, created a study committee to explore premium assistance alternatives for uninsured patients. GHA is very supportive of this educational effort and will be heavily involved in providing information to the study committee. As work continues on the uninsured crisis, GHA supports the Georgia Chamber on their fully independent study, which aims to produce a Georgia-specific initiative. This coming year, the hospital community will continue to face unrelenting challenges. With the sunset of the Hospital Provider Payment Program drawing near, persistent efforts to degrade Georgia’s CON program, and the ongoing work to reduce the number of uninsured, Georgia’s hospitals need to remain united in their work to defend health care for all Georgians. GHA will remain vigilant in advocating for the best interests of all our hospitals, and I call on each of you, as hospital leaders, to do the same. None of this work would be possible without your support and involvement, and for your efforts, I say thank you. -Earl V Rogers, President and CEO

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Summary of GHA Legislative Activities The Georgia General Assembly adjourned the 2016 Legislative Session Sine Die on Thursday, March 24, 2016, finishing the last year of the two-year biennium. The 40-day legislative process saw more than 11,000 bills, resolutions, amendments and substitutions authored by members of the General Assembly. As with any legislative session, but especially during an election year, highly polarized topics were brought forth for Georgia’s elected officials to debate. Religious freedom, firearms on college campuses, medical marijuana, merit pay for teachers, and gambling legalization were among a long list of controversial topics considered this year. The Georgia Hospital Association, as always, was actively lobbying the multitude of health care-related legislation to ensure the best interests of our hospitals and the patients and communities they serve. Below, find a focused selection of legislation GHA worked diligently on during the 2016 session.

Rural Hospitals Rural hospitals throughout Georgia continue to struggle financially as they provide high-quality care. With high demand in the Emergency Department, insufficient compensation, limited access to physicians, and patient populations with higher percentages of health disparities, rural hospitals continue to struggle to keep their doors open. Since 2013, five rural hospitals in Georgia have closed their doors. In response to the growing number of hospital closures, Governor Deal established the Rural Hospital Stabilization Committee in April 2014 in an effort to identify the needs of rural hospitals and work on developing potential solutions. During the 2016 legislative session, the Rural Hospital Tax Credit Act (passed as SB 258), created a deeper focus on rural health. The legislation allows businesses and individuals to receive tax credits for direct contributions to certain rural hospitals starting in 2017. Individual tax payers are allowed a tax credit equal to 70 percent of their contribution up to a maximum of $2,500 as a single filer, or $5,000 for couples filing jointly. Corporations are also eligible for a tax credit up to 70 percent of their contribution or 75 percent of the corporation’s income tax liability, whichever is less. GHA worked to ensure that this legislation would benefit as many rural hospitals as possible. In order for hospitals to be eligible to receive donations under the tax credit program, they must: • • • • • •

Be a licensed acute care hospital; Provide inpatient hospital services in a rural county having a population of less than 35,000 or be designated as a Critical Access Hospital; Participate in Medicare and Medicaid and provide health care services to indigent patients; Have at least 10 percent of its annual net revenue categorized as indigent care, charity care, or bad debt; Annually file IRS Form 990 (Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax) or the equivalent with the Department of Community Health; and Be operated by a local hospital authority or be designated as a 501(c)(3) organization by the IRS.

The legislation limits the amount of tax credits for contributions to all rural hospital organizations to $50 million in 2017, $60 million in 2018, and $70 million in 2019. Individual rural hospital organizations are limited to $4 million annually. The tax credit is a crucial measure to ensure vitally needed funding to rural hospitals through donations from community members. GHA was very active in getting this important piece of legislation passed and looks forward to continued focus on rural health care from the Georgia General Assembly. The Rural Hospital Tax Credit will automatically be repealed December 31, 2019.

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Insurance Senate Bill 302 – Sen. P.K. Martin authored SB 302, which requires insurance providers to maintain an accurate directory of health care providers for each of its contracted network insurance plans. This legislation allows consumers of health insurance plans to see an updated, easily accessible list of health care providers covered under their specific insurance plan. GHA worked very closely with Sen. Martin on the legislation to ensure provider directories were properly updated by the insurance companies.

Vaccines House Bill 1043 – Rep. Trey Kelley authored HB 1043, which helps to improve hospitals’ abilities to administer influenza vaccines outside of hospital campuses. GHA worked diligently with Rep. Kelley to change Georgia code and allow flu vaccines to be given to patients within privacy screens if requested.

Stroke Centers House Bill 853 – Rep. Lee Hawkins authored HB 853, which amends the Coverdell-Murphy Act. The legislation updates the current levels of stroke centers in Georgia to reflect advances in stroke treatment within hospitals. The bill also adds a new stroke designation, Comprehensive Stroke Centers, to ensure Georgia’s levels match accreditation and national standards. GHA worked closely with the author regarding the establishment of the Comprehensive Stroke center designation to ensure no unintended consequences occurred.

Trauma Care Senate Bill 350 – Authored by Sen. Jeff Mullis, SB 350 establishes the excise tax regulations for consumer fireworks. The legislation designates 55 percent of the proceeds to be provided to the Georgia Trauma Care Network Commission. GHA worked with the author and supported this legislation that gives additional funding to trauma care in Georgia. As in past General Assembly Legislative Sessions, GHA and our hospital community defeated attempts to erode Georgia’s CON program. During the 2016 session, Representative Wendell Willard authored House Bill 1055, which called for a total eradication of the CON program in the state. The legislation would have allowed health care organizations the ability to “cherry pick” the most profitable patients with the best insurance. While HB 1055 did not receive a hearing in the House Government Affairs Committee, Chairman Ed Rynders concluded the issue would receive additional discussion outside the legislation session this fall. GHA continues to monitor and work to defeat threats to the state’s CON program. GHA is also working with key stakeholders, including the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, on a solution for the uninsured and underinsured crisis through the Health Care Access Task Force. The task force will study and potentially offer a solution for uninsured and underinsured Georgians. As Georgia is ranked 4th in the nation for number of uninsured citizens, with 1.5 million people having no health insurance, the state finds itself in a prime position to find resolution with an alternative to ensure access to care.

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Economic Impact of Georgia Hospitals Georgia hospitals have played a significant role in Georgia’s economic recovery, pumping $43.6 billion into the state’s economy in 2014, according to a recently released study by the Georgia Hospital Association (GHA). The report also revealed that hospitals supplied more than 160,000 full- and part-time jobs and indirectly created more than 364,000 full-time jobs in Georgia. “We already know how important Georgia hospitals are to providing life-saving health care services to our family and friends; this study demonstrates how integral hospitals are to our state’s economic wellbeing,” said GHA President and CEO Earl Rogers. “Hospitals are a tremendous source of well-paying jobs close to home and pave the way for so many other businesses to locate to nearby areas. Simply put, the environment for a successful business climate in each community is bolstered by a healthy workforce and a strong, vibrant community hospital.” Despite their major economic contributions, Georgia hospitals continue to face unprecedented financial challenges. Since the beginning of 2013, five Georgia hospitals have closed, and others — especially those in rural areas — are struggling to keep their doors open. According to the 2013 Georgia Department of Community Health Hospital Financial Survey, 57 percent of all rural hospitals in Georgia had negative total margins, while more than four out of 10 of all Georgia hospitals lost money in the same year. A huge strain on hospital finances continues to be the explosive growth of uncompensated care. According to the GHA study, Georgia hospitals provided nearly $1.75 billion in unpaid care in 2014, a 9.4 percent increase from 2012. “Georgia’s economic recovery hasn’t made a difference for hospitals in terms of uncompensated care,” said Rogers. “We still have hundreds of thousands of Georgians who have no health care insurance and their only access to health care services is the hospital emergency room. For hospitals, that’s a recipe for disaster.” According to a recent study by the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured, 17.5 percent of all Georgians remain uninsured. Only two other states — Texas (18.8 percent) and Oklahoma (18.1 percent) — have a higher percentage of uninsured residents. In Georgia, more than one out of every three patients who seek care in a hospital are either uninsured or have Medicaid. To make matters worse, Medicaid pays Georgia hospitals, on average, only about 87 percent of costs, meaning hospitals lose 13 cents on every dollar spent treating a Medicaid recipient. “There’s not a business in any industry that can survive long term when such a significant part of its customer base either cannot pay or pays below cost for a product or service,” Rogers added. “To protect our local, community hospitals which are so critical to our state’s physical and economic health, the provider community is currently engaging in an effort to ensure that hospitals in the state are adequately paid for the services they provide.”

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The report also shows that the presence of a hospital is a major source for jobs in any given community, both directly and indirectly. In 2014, Georgia hospitals employed 160,143 people. But when an employment multiplier is applied to that number, it indicates that hospitals supported more than 364,000 full-time jobs in the state. The employment multiplier considers the “ripple effect” of direct hospital expenditures on the economy, such as medical supplies, durable medical equipment and pharmaceuticals. “When a community hospital closes, residents there not only lose nearby access to lifesaving medical services, they lose many wellpaying jobs that contribute significantly to the economy and the tax base in that area,” Rogers explained. “These are jobs that are indispensable to a community.” The hospital economic impact report also measures hospitals’ direct economic contributions to Georgia’s working families. Using a household earnings multiplier, the study determined that hospitals generate over $13.7 billion in household earnings in the state. The household earnings multiplier measures the increased economic contributions from individuals employed directly or indirectly by hospitals through daily living expenditures.

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By the Numbers:

Getting to Know Your Hospitals 187

Hospitals in the state of Georgia.


Hospitals who are members of the Georgia Hospital Association. GHA-member hospitals consist of 105 general acute care hospitals; 30 Critical Access Hospitals; 22 psychiatric/behavioral health hospitals; 27 specialty hospitals; and 3 Veterans hospitals.


Georgia counties with a hospital. Georgia counties without a hospital. This is nearly half the total amount.

52 5

Atkinson Charlton Dawson Hart Lincoln Oconee Schley Terrell Wheeler

Baker Chattahoochee Dooly Heard Long Oglethorpe Stewart Treutlen White

Inpatient admissions in 2014.

8.3 million

Outpatient visits in 2014.

1.8 million $43.6 billion

Brantley Clay Glascock Jones Marion Pike Talbot Walker Wilkinson

Bryan Columbia Hancock Lamar McIntosh Quitman Taliaferro Warren

Calhoun Crawford Harris Lee Montgomery Telfair Taylor Webster

Hospitals have closed their doors since 2013.

1.1 million

1.2 million

Banks Chattooga Echols Johnson Madison Pierce Turner Twiggs Wilcox

Individuals insured by Medicare in 2014. Established in 1965, Medicare is available to most people beginning at age 65 and to those with end stage renal (kidney) disease or total disability. Individuals insured by Medicaid in 2014. Established in 1965, Medicaid is available to low-income individuals, pregnant women, and the aged, blind or disabled. Total economic impact of Georgia hospitals


Number of full- and part-time jobs supplied by hospitals in 2014.


Number of people indirectly employed by hospitals in 2014.

$1.75 billion

Amount of uncompensated care provided

$1.27 billion

Amount of community benefit provided by Georgia hospitals in 2014

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Trustee Certification Program Provides Educational Opportunity for Hospital Board Members In a complex health care environment, staying up-to-date on health care topics can be a challenge for hospital board trustees. As respected members of the community who serve in other fields, yet volunteer their time to serve in these positions, the task of trying to be well-informed of every issue is understandably strenuous. Doctors and nurses who serve on hospital boards are at an advantage as far as having an enhanced health care background. Other trustees, such as community leaders, may not be as involved in health care on a frequent basis. For these individuals, not having that experience and knowledge can make it difficult to be certain they make the best possible decisions for the hospital. The Georgia Hospital Association Trustee Certification Program was created in 2008 to fill the education gap on hospital boards. It not only helps bring trustees up to speed on the financial complexities of the hospital field, but it also enables hospitals to participate in health improvement practices. Upon meeting requirements for certification, board members are able to demonstrate to their communities, lawmakers, regulators, physicians, employees, business and other community stakeholders that they not only understand and embrace the need for governance accountability, but also are willing to formally certify their adherence to governance best practices. Individual trustees can achieve certification by completing education on health care and leadership topics. They are required to complete 12 hours of approved course work the first year of certification and 8 hours of course work for each year after. Every other year, at least four hours of approved course work should be completed by attending in-person programs, enabling trustees to network with and learn from other hospitals. Organizations also have the opportunity to become GHA Board Certified Hospitals by completing yearly requirements, some of which include having each board member complete the certification process. Certification is a viable way of assuring various stakeholders that Georgia’s hospitals hold themselves to high standards and are accountable to their communities for their governing performance. GHA believes the program has resulted not only in more educated and engaged board members, but also will serve to enhance the trust between a hospital and its community. Enrollment in the program is free of charge. To begin the certification process, hospitals can complete the GHA Trustee Certification Program Enrollment Form to register. More information can be found here on our website or by calling Martha Harrell, vice president of educational services for GHA, at (770) 249-4517.

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Helps Providers Prepare for Significant Reimbursement Change Ask clinicians and physicians about big changes in the health care field, and they will probably mention the rapid transition from fee-for-service reimbursement to value-based care payment model. In early 2015, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that it would reform how providers are reimbursed for the treatment of Medicare patients. The goal is that physicians being paid by the number of tests and patient visits will be phased out and, instead, physicians will be paid based on the quality of care. A major step toward this transformation occurred on April 16, 2015, when the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate was eliminated and the Medicare Access and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) Reauthorization Act (MACRA) of 2015 was introduced. The launch of MACRA means that, over the next seven years, all Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) eligible professionals will be reimbursed according to where they fall within various performance thresholds. MACRA consolidates the PQRS and other existing quality reporting programs such as Meaningful Use into one new system. By 2018, 90 percent of Medicare payments will be tied to quality. These sweeping changes are happening quickly. More than 1,000 Georgia physicians, physician assistants, and nurse practitioners (clinicians) are receiving assistance by participating in the Compass Practice Transformation Network (PTN). The Georgia Hospital Association Research and Education Foundation (GHAREF) is providing coaching and resources necessary to ensure providers thrive in the new world of value-based care. As one of the 29 PTNs across the country, the Compass PTN was established by the Iowa Healthcare Collaborative (IHC), an organization dedicated to improved health care. Compass PTN is part of the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative (TCPi), a national program from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). According to CMS, TCPi is “one of the largest federal investments uniquely designed to support clinician practices through nationwide, collaborative, and peer-based learning networks that facilitate large-scale practice transformation.” Compass PTN supports physicians and clinicians across eight states in Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, and South Dakota. GHAREF quality advisors will work with physicians and clinicians to prepare for the 2019 alternative payment models while improving and sustaining quality care practices.

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“The Practice Transformation Networks are designed to improve health outcomes, improve care coordination, better engage patients and their families, improve patient and practice satisfaction, and reduce the overall cost of care,” said Dr. Doug Patten, chief medical officer of the Georgia Hospital Association. GHAREF is partnering with the Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) to work with Georgia physicians and clinicians. As the leading voice for physicians in Georgia, MAG has endorsed the Compass PTN as an effective partner and is supporting efforts to recruit physician leaders. Recently, Dr. Patten discussed the Compass PTN and how physicians can benefit from participating in the TCPi on the MAG “Top Docs Radio” show. “With more than 7,800 member physicians and clinicians in every specialty and practice setting, the Medical Association of Georgia has endorsed the Compass PTN as a result of its multi-year collaboration with the Georgia Hospital Association on issues that are related to quality and safety and community health,” explained MAG President John S. Harvey, M.D. “MAG is convinced that the Compass PTN will give physicians and clinicians in Georgia the best chance to develop successful and sustainable practice models.” Clinicians and physicians who participate in Compass PTN not only receive peer-based learning networks to develop their core competencies, but they can also access tools provided by the 10 Support and Alignment Networks (SANs). The SANs consist of national and regional professional associations and public-private partnerships that are currently working in practice transformation efforts. The SANs will help ensure sustainability of continuing medical education, maintenance of certification and core competency development. They also provide a system for workforce development. One of the SANs is the American College of Physicians (ACP), an organization advising their members of the free tools and personal guidance available to meet their clinical, operational and reporting needs. “The American College of Physicians has been a leader in regard to practice transformation and our Chapter works hard to help physicians understand and adapt to changes in the health care environment,” said Mary Daniels, executive director of the Georgia Chapter of the ACP. “The ACP is an active participant in the TCPi grant and is offering the Compass and other PTNs valuable tools to support the development of core competencies in practice transformation that will lead to improved health outcomes for patients.” The Compass Practice Transformation Network will help physicians and clinicians drive quality improvement to execute best-practice medicine, engaging patients as equal partners in their care. In addition, clinicians and physicians will learn from one another, and achieve the common goals of improved care, better health and reduced cost.

For more information on Compass PTN, visit the website at Additional questions can be answered by Compass PTN Leads Doug Patten, M.D. at or Joyce Reid at

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GHA Set to Reinvent its Digital Presence Recognizing that a digital revitalization was necessary to effectively support its members, the Georgia Hospital Association (GHA) is undergoing a significant facelift on its website. Nearly 18 months ago, GHA embarked on a mission to reinvent itself digitally, which included a complete website redesign and the implementation of a new membership portal on the website. GHA has 170+ member hospitals who look to GHA for advocacy, education and communication relating to health care policy, legislation and operations. Therefore, a focused approach was taken to extend GHA’s existing thought leadership mediums to its members by way of enhancing its digital communication on the new GHA website. The goals of this website enhancement were to: • • • • •

Enhance the visual appeal (or aesthetics) of the website Increase member and public awareness of GHA’s advocacy efforts Simplify event registration and CEU tracking for members Host health care articles, news releases, periodicals and other information resources Deliver real-time information via social media feeds

This digital transformation also extends behind the scenes, where a new Microsoft Dynamics CRM solution will interface with the GHA website, enhancing membership engagement and GHA’s ability to deliver educational programs and content. Ultimately, this strategic effort will ensure our members have enhanced access to the wealth of advocacy, education and communication resources that make being a GHA member so valuable.

How to create your member portal account in 5 easy steps Step 1: Please visit our website at Step 2: Once on the site, please click on the orange button called Login or Signup or My Account. Step 3: On the account login page, choose the Register button or New User Account on the left. Step 4: Next, complete all fields. Please note the captcha is very sensitive (case sensitive and no added spaces). Step 5: When you see your My Profile page, this means your account was created successfully. You should also get an email confirming your registration.

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Website & Intranet Redesign

CMS, Mobile, Apps, & SharePoint Solutions

Full Service Digital Marketing Services


Georgia Hospital Health Services Georgia Hospital Health Services, the shared services subsidiary of the Georgia Hospital Association, is proud to partner with the following companies. They offering products and services that assist in ensuring the sustainability of hospital resources for a community while financially supporting GHA in its advocacy and educational initiatives.

Exclusively Marketed ARxChange FHA Health Information Management Services Healthcare Staffing Services MV Managed Care SunRx Wage Index Navigator

Endorsed Services Clean Hands Safe Hands Commerce Bank eReceivables Jackson Executives Meridian Group International Merritt Hawkins National Research Corporation Park Dansan Staff Care TransUnion Healthcare - eScan Platform Vendormate Verge Solutions VIE Healthcare WellTrackONE

Product Line Partners Digital Health Product Line American Well Gozio Health Health QRS Mobile Health PREMEDEX RCG Global Services Streamline Health

Operational Product Line Hayes Energy Services Horizon CSA H-Source Power Systems Group (PSG) Energy

GHHS subjects each potential program to a rigorous due diligence process and partners only with companies and programs that are of high quality, provide a benefit to our members, and fit within GHA’s strategic plan.

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The Right Counsel Makes All the Difference. More than 30 Years’ Health Care Experience ˆ;u Ć‘Ć? ;-Ń´|_ -u; ‚oum;‹v Clients in Over 25 States Chambers USA Top Ranking in Health Care AHLA Top Honors #smlclientscomeďŹ rst Toby Watt | Atlanta, GA | 404.962.1026 |

Thank you to our 2016 Annual Sponsors Platinum Sponsors athenahealth Draffin & Tucker LLP Georgia Hospital Health Services (GHHS) Health Care Insurance Resources, Inc. (HCIR) Morris, Manning & Martin, LLP

Gold Sponsors Alston & Bird LLP Arnall Golden Gregory, LLP Avid Design Brasfield & Gorrie King & Spalding Perkins + Will Smith Moore Leatherwood, LLP VALIC

Silver Sponsors Air Purification Specialists AP Labs Apollo MD Balch & Bingham, LLP Barton Malow Batson-Cook Construction Bluff Plantation Berkeley Research Group Gas South HKS Architects, Inc. Howell Rusk Dodson Architects Innovative Therapy Concepts JE Dunn COnstruction Kelsey Advertising and Design Meadows & Ohly Metz Culinary Management North American Partners in Anesthesia PatientMatters, LLC Peach State Health Plan Pinicale Health Group Sodexo Sound Physicians TD Bank UBS Financial Services Inc. Warren Averett

Bronze Sponsors Alexander Consulting Group, Inc. AlliedBarton Security Services Alvarez & Marsal, LLC AmCare Group, LLC Art Plumbing Axea Solutions BDR Partners BSA LifeStructures Carr Riggs & Ingram, LLC CDH Partners Change Healthcare (formerly Chamberlin Edmonds) Collins Project Management DIRTT Duffey Southeast Construction ECI Healthcare Partners EDI First American Healthcare Finance First Signal FreemanWhite, a Haskell Company Georgia Power Company Gresham Smith and Partners Hammes Company Haskell HC Healthcare Advisors HealthAmerica Realty Group, LLC HealthTrust Hritz Management Services Legacy Consulting Group LifeLink of Georgia McKenney’s MedStream Metro Atlanta Ambulance Service Nelson Mullins Riley and Scarborough Novo Nordisk, Inc. Pettigrew Medical Business Services PharmD on Demand Polsinelli Raymond James Robins & Morton Secure Health Plans of Georgia, LLC Sheridan Healthcare Skanska Strategic Hospital Resources TeamHealth US Anesthesia Womble Carlyle

The Georgia Hospital Association (GHA) has a long history and an excellent reputation for providing quality educational programs to its members at a reasonable cost. GHA’s sponsors play an integral part in the success of these educational programs through their generous contributions. The sponsorship program is a valuable for the sponsoring organizations and Georgia’s hospitals. 2016 GHA Sponsorship Program Brochure Enroll Here to Become a GHA Sponsor!

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