WESTERN HEALTH ADVANTAGE: CEO To Depart
The chief executive officer of Western Health Advantage -- "a nonprofit HMO composed of an unusual consortium of health systems and their physician groups" -- will depart "the fledgling company to join a Maryland-based health care management firm." The Sacramento Bee reports that Tom Elkin, who will leave Western Health in June, "oversaw the growth of the start-up Sacramento-based [HMO], taking it from one employee to 30" and to "25,000 members in Sacramento, Yolo, Solano and western Placer counties" in his two-year tenure. Prior to this, he directed CalPERS' health benefits program, where he was credited as being a "key player in bringing down health coverage costs for members." Western Health is owned by the University of California-Davis, Health System, NorthBay Healthcare System and Mercy Healthcare Sacramento. It was launched "to compete with health care giants such as Kaiser Permanente." Western Health Chair John Chambers said "the HMO will start looking for a new CEO immediately and the process should be completed in the next few months." He said, "We are pleased with the progress Tom as made in creating Western Health Advantage. His leadership and vision enabled WHA to successfully enter the market in record time" (Chan, 4/8).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.