The 10th anniversary of our Healthcare Providers Transformation Assembly is just a few weeks away. We are looking forward to having all of our attendees with us in Denver and of course the Gala Dinner where our Keynote Speaker, Steve Allen, Executive Emeritus and former CEO at Nationwide Children’s Hospital will take the stage.
We had the opportunity to sit down with Steve to discuss his leadership, where Healthcare is trending and why he is excited for the assembly next month.
About Steve Allen:
Steve Allen, MD, MBA, is the recently retired CEO of Nationwide Children’s Hospital, a preeminent academic medical system in Columbus, Ohio. When he joined Nationwide Children’s in 2006, the hospital was known as an important regional health care center. By the time of his retirement in July of 2019, Nationwide Children’s had become one of the country’s most respected and innovative pediatric institutions with over $2.4 billion a year in revenue. It now consistently appears on U.S. News and World Report Honor Roll list of America’s top 10 children’s hospitals, and its Abigail Wexner Research Institute is one of the National Institutes of Health’s top-funded freestanding pediatric research facilities. Dr. Allen oversaw a period of unprecedented growth and transformation in Nationwide Children’s size, scope and vision. Through his unique perspective, redefining the role of a modern healthcare organization, Dr. Allen built a team and culture that has been recognized as a role model for innovation and collaboration. In the process, he has become one of the most prominent voices in American pediatric health care strategy and policy. His advocacy in Washington D.C. and his opinion columns in The Hill, U.S. News and World Report and other publications provided a messaging template for other health care executives to follow.
What is your greatest strength, and how has that impacted your career trajectory? How did you make your way into becoming the CEO of a leading health system? Curiosity and a lifelong obsession with medicine. I knew I wanted to be a physician from my earliest memories. During my education, the appeal of combining clinical care, teaching and research led me to pursue an academic career. For over 24 years, I took care of patients as a critical care physician, taught medical students, residents and fellows, conducted and published clinical and basic science research and was active in my national societies. Certainly working in the crisis environment of a critical care unit one learns to make quick decisions with incomplete information, something that translates well to running healthcare organizations. Along the way, I develop my vision of healthcare and I obtained an MBA degree on nights and weekends that I greatly enjoyed. Advancing through leadership I became the CEO of our system’s children’s hospital. Subsequently, I got a call to look at the CEO position at what was then Columbus Children’s Hospital.
What is one of the greatest lessons you learned on your way to becoming a leader in Healthcare? A. Nothing we do is the same as what we did 10 years ago. If you are not planning for what’s next, you are falling behind. B. Seek out and listen to the frontline staff.
Where does your passion for leadership come from? Has it been in your DNA all of your life or did you have a certain experience that triggered your passion? I have sought leadership positions from my middle school days and throughout my career. I am someone who loves to get others enthused about an opportunity.
What trends do you foresee for 2020 in Healthcare? More transparency around Quality and Safety, more push towards risk, more nontraditional providers, more consolidation, greater incorporation of genomics, inadequate mental health capacity
In your opinion, what is the greatest challenge Healthcare is currently facing? Uncertainty of healthcare policy at state and federal level
What should hospitals have innovated yesterday? Improve access
We are excited to have you join us next month as the Keynote Speaker. Can you give us a preview about the message or story you want to convey to our audience? What are you hoping to instill upon the executives? I am going to cover a few of the initiatives we pursued at Nationwide Children’s Hospital all forward-thinking healthcare institutions should consider.
Why is executive education important to you, and how do you invest in your personal growth as a leader? I often tell physicians who seek my advice about executive roles that they most likely knew 98% of their specialty’s knowledge when they finished their last fellowship. In contrast, successful leadership not only requires lifelong learning of the vast array of factors affecting our industry. The pursuit of leadership mastery also demands constant introspection and self-awareness.
What are you most looking forward to at the Healthcare Providers Transformation Assembly? The interaction with so many esteemed colleagues all working to improve our country’s healthcare. A great learning opportunity!
Thanks for joining us Steve!
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