Turnover at the top

Three big health systems, three big transitions.
The CEO shakeups among North Georgia hospitals continued this week with the resignation of Jim Gardner at Northeast Georgia Health System in Gainesville. Gardner‘s departure followed the recent resignation of Kirk Wilson at Saint Joseph’s Health System in Atlanta, and the September firing of Gregory Simone at Cobb County-based WellStar Health System. The AJC has an article today on Simone’s reaction to his dismissal.
This sudden surge in departures may be just a coincidence, says Armand Balsano, an Atlanta-based managing director of Navigant, a national consulting firm. But what’s ahead in health care may trigger more hospital leadership shuffles.
Balsano says the federal health care reform law will bring new challenges – and pressures – on hospital leadership. “During the next three years, it will be the biggest change in health care since Medicare was introduced in the mid-1960s,’’ he says. “These are going to be difficult times for hospitals.’’
And perhaps that will mean more movement at the top of Georgia’s hospitals … and boom times for health care executive search firms.