WILMINGTON — Clinton Memorial Hospital Chief Operating Officer Greg Nielsen recently spoke to the Wilmington Rotary Club which meets at noon at the Damon’s restaurant.
Nielsen stated that CMH opened in 1951 and much has changed at the Hospital in 67 years. CMH was purchased in 2010 by Regional Care and the transition to today has been made possible, in large part, by the foundational physicians.
The hospital has experienced a lot of growth in the past several years.
Nielsen stated that in looking at 2017, the hospital had set some goals for the year:
• Growing access to care
• Recruiting local providers
• Upgrading the Cancer Center
• Initiating cardiac programs
-• Maintaining the high quality (and award-winning) standard of care
• Increasing community giving and outreach
Nielsen went through each of those and shared the successes associated with each goal.
The hospital draws from a 120,000 population in Clinton, Highland and Fayette counties. Thirty percent of care is inpatient, versus outpatient care.
At the 10th annual Brake for Breakfast, a record-setting 1,250 people visited the event.
Nielsen said that looking toward 2018, plans are to grow services including oncology, orthopedics and cardiac care; to make the ER more geriatric-friendly; to recruit providers in orthopedic and ENT specialties; to maintain the award winning and high quality of care; and to continue to increase community involvement.
On an aside, Nielsen shared with the club that with his recent promotion, he will eventually be leaving the area. One of his immediate tasks includes finding his replacement as CEO of CMH. After the school year is out, it is likely he and his family will relocate.
Also Rotary member David Bailey asked, in light of the recent announcement to close Good Samaritan (Dayton), what did the future look like for county hospitals?
Nielsen noted that healthcare has never been easy — costa go up and co-pays go up. Many small hospitals are working to adapt, but those that cannot will ultimately fail. They need to adapt like any organization or business.
Locally, he feels that CMH is managing change well and is well-positioned to be here well into the future.