Cynthia Persily, PhD, RN, FAAN
Dr. Persily is the CEO of Highland Hospital in Charleston, WV.
Today I was meeting with a long time colleague about our hospital and all of our services. He asked me an interesting question–“How do you spend most of your days?” Of course this seemed like a simple question until I started to reflect on it a bit–but I will stand by my answer–which was I believe a good part of my role as CEO is to look for opportunities for us to meet our mission and move closer to our vision of being the premier behavioral health care provider in the region while investing in our patients, employees, and community.
I firmly believe these opportunities are endless. So, in analyzing opportunities, we must be strategic. Some opportunities present themselves and are what my kids call “no-brainers”. I’ve written about some of these in this space, including our participation in the Hospital Based Presumptive Eligibility program, a provision of the Affordable Care Act, that allows us to enroll eligible patients who are admitted to our hospital into Medicaid. This program is impacting our hospital immeasurably by reducing bad debt.
Other opportunities offer a bit more risk, but are so closely aligned with our mission that we cannot turn them down. Our new Advance Healthcare @UC is one such opportunity. Opening this week on the UC campus, and offering primary care, behavioral health care and pharmacy services to the campus and surrounding community, this Center will provide the highest quality care while offering educational opportunities for UC students–a win for the entire community.
Finally, some opportunities offer us a chance to be in on the ground floor of building new models of care–certainly a strategic risk. Next week we will enter into one of these opportunities as we begin participation in the WV Health Home project with WV Medicaid. Why take such a risk? We believe that we can use our expertise to help build the best model of care for the vulnerable population we care for–and our participation is worth the risk.
So, I spend a lot of my days looking at opportunities. I am not alone in looking at opportunities–rather I am surrounded by expert staff, supportive boards, and a spirit within the organization of taking risks to meet our mission and reach our vision. I hope you will join me in identifying opportunities for our future–which I see as boundless!