CATHOLIC HEALTHCARE WEST: CEO Kramer To Step Down
Richard Kramer, the CEO of Catholic Healthcare West, the nation's fifth-largest Roman Catholic hospital system, will relinquish his post effective Sept. 7. CHW board members cited a need for "new leadership" as the reason for Kramer's departure. According to Steve McDermott, executive director of CHW affiliate Hill Physicians Medical Group, Kramer's vision "has been a critical factor in the system's growth for many years, but that vision has become 'derailed' in recent years." During Kramer's decade long tenure, CHW quadrupled its number of hospital facilities to 48, but financial woes have plagued the organization of late. Operational losses for the fiscal year ending in June are expected to reach $225 million, on revenues of $4.4 billion, compared to $32 million in operational losses on $3.5 billion in revenue last year. CHW spokesperson Keith Harmon attributes some of the losses to Medicare cutbacks, increasing pharmacy costs, "acquisition-related costs [and] difficulties aligning physicians groups." Some critics fault CHW for "not effectively controll[ing] its sprawling hospital empire." CHW board members have named former CHW executive and board member Sister Phyllis Hughes interim CEO, citing her "experience with CHW and her understanding of its values and mission." The search for a permanent replacement is already underway (Rauber, Modern Healthcare, 8/2 issue).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.