Vol 13 — Letter from the Chair

Posted on June 2016

Many of us are asking ourselves, “What does integration of UW Health mean to me?” While no one has all the answers, I want to share my perspective and take a moment to reflect on our accomplishments over the last year and anticipate the next steps forward. In 2015, UW Health brought together the UW Medical Foundation (UWMF) and the UW Hospital and Clinics Authority (UWHCA) into a single entity. The faculty and leadership of the UWMF and UWHCA developed an organizational structure and integration plan effective July 1, 2015. In the months since the decision to form an integrated UW Health, many people have been hard at work to ensure a positive direction for the organization. There has been a great deal of collaboration between the legal team, human resources, information technology teams, and ambulatory and clinical operations teams to facilitate a smooth transition.

An additional development is the selection of a new CEO to succeed Dr. Jeff Grossman. Dr. Alan Kaplan has been chosen as the new CEO of UW Health. I have met Dr. Kaplan during the interview and selection process and he brings a wealth of personal knowledge and experience in running a complex healthcare organization. He arrived May 1, at which time Dr. Jeff Grossman finally had the opportunity to begin his process of retirement.

The UWMF Council of Chairs has been working together extensively over the last ten months to identify some of the basic principles as well as operational features of the new funds flow model. This model is a new way to organize our clinical, research, education, and operating activities, and the council is exploring ways to develop more careful alignment between our desired strategy and the resources allocated to pursue that strategy. These funds flow discussions have been expanded to include faculty representatives and representatives from UW Health leadership, who are joining subcommittees to explore and develop new models for allocating our resources in an integrated UW Health. The Department of Radiology will have a good opportunity to provide input on these committees, which include myself and Margaret Birrenkott, as well as Drs. Louis Hinshaw, Cris Meyer, and Scott Reeder. Please feel free to share your opinions regarding UW Health integration with myself or any of the individuals.

-Tom Grist, MD, FACR