Rod Hochman, M.D., president and CEO of Providence St. Joseph Health, is the keynote speaker at the Business Journal’s Health Care Conference Tuesday, Nov. 15 (nbbj.news/health16).
Among the organization's local facilities are Queen of the Valley Medical Center in Napa and Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital.
Hochman discussed key issues facing St. Joseph Health and health care.
Why did you pursue the merger with St. Joseph Health?
ROD HOCHMAN: We considered this to be a once in a century opportunity — the timing was right and we have long-standing, similar missions of providing compassionate and comprehensive care, with an emphasis to serve the most vulnerable in our communities. We know we can do more together, and now more than ever health systems must combine resources and expertise to create the innovations and solutions that will help deliver better, more affordable care.
Providence St. Joseph Health created the Institute for Mental Health and Wellness, supported by an initial $100 million investment. Why the emphasis on mental health, and what does the Institute for Mental Health and Wellness hope to accomplish?
HOCHMAN: We believe health care must treat and care for the whole person.
At the heart of our missions is to improve the health and well-being of the most vulnerable populations, and mental health care has long been neglected in our nation. Access to effective and affordable mental health services is one of the most significant gaps in every one of our communities. With the Institute for Mental Health and Wellness, we want to be a convener of like-minded advocates and together reduce the risk of trying new things. Only by working together will we solve such a significant and complex problem.
There has been a surge in health care consolidation in the last few years. What are the benefits, and what is the effect on patients?
HOCHMAN: Simply put, we can do more together. We will be able to put a greater emphasis on whole community health strategies that encourage preventive care that is coordinated across all health services.
Sharing our clinical expertise and quality data can create better clinical outcomes, reliability and value for the patient.
Millions of patient records have been lost due to cyberattacks in the past year. How does that affect your approach to population health management?
HOCHMAN: Whether it is one patient health record or millions, we apply the same rigor and respect for privacy. We have significant protections in place to keep patient data safe; and the ability to de-identify health information that can inform quality improvement.
Do you see more affiliations or partnerships for Providence on the horizon?
HOCHMAN: Our founding sisters were courageous pioneers who partnered with like-minded organizations serving everyone. This heritage inspires us to always look for ways to best serve our communities, including partnering with others. We are also in an economic environment where it is imperative to deliver quality care more affordably. There could be partnerships in our future, and we are always open to finding the best way to serve everyone.
Health Care Conference
Tuesday, Nov. 15, 7:30–11 a.m.
Hyatt Vineyard Creek Hotel & Spa, 170 Railroad St., Santa Rosa
Keynote speaker: Rod Hochman, M.D., president and CEO, Providence St. Joseph Health
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