Editor's note: Following is a letter of appreciation sent by St. Luke's Health System President and CEO Dr. David Pate to the team of St. Luke's physicians who have worked to establish our new electronic intensive care unit (eICU) program:
Date: June 21, 2013
To: Saadia Akhtar, M.D.; William Bergquist, M.D.; Lloyd Blake, M.D.; William Dittrich, M.D.; David Fonseca, M.D.; Brian Goltry, M.D.; Oleg Kouskov, M.D.; Karen Miller, M.D.; Wendi Norris, M.D.; Sogol Nowbar, M.D.; Eric Rich, M.D.; David Sasso, M.D.; Patrick Weis, M.D.; David Wyler, D.O.
Re: Tremendous gratitude for your work on eICU
When I came to St. Luke’s now nearly four years ago, I came in large part because I realized that there was something special about the physicians in this community.
I saw the opportunities that could be created through collaboration between a healthcare delivery system and caring, committed, dedicated physicians, especially if we could cultivate and develop physician leaders from among the ranks of these physicians to lead our transformation.
It was not long after I got here that I realized that our pulmonary/critical care physicians were among the physicians most aligned with our mutual vision of transforming health care and the most primed to lead the change.
While vision is all too rare these days, execution on vision is rarer still. This is what will separate those organizations and groups who not only survive the single greatest change in healthcare delivery since the implementation of the Medicare program (and I would argue that this is a time of even greater change), but thrive.
At a time when so many physicians around the country are digging in their heels and resisting change, you all have risen to the occasion and driven change.
It has required sacrifices on each of your parts to promote flexibility of coverage, communication with other caregivers, and service levels that are exceptional. But these sacrifices have resulted in a breakneck speed of adoption of the program, which I understand has beat all expectations of our vendor, and more importantly, has resulted in better quality outcomes and greater patient safety for all those we are privileged to care for. We are now able to provide levels of care to people close to home that were previously not possible.
Importantly, you have been pioneers in role modeling the transformation of the care model that must occur if we are to be successful in achieving our Triple Aim of better health, better care, and lower costs. Team-based care, care coordination, management of care transitions, and innovative uses of technology are all essential if we are to create a less fragmented and more efficient healthcare delivery system. You are a shining example of our success.
I cannot tell you how much I admire each and every one of you. I know that this has not been easy. True transformational change is never easy. But you are making a difference.
On behalf of St. Luke’s Health System, our physicians, our employees, our boards of directors, our communities, and most especially our patients and their families, I want to express my tremendous appreciation to each and every one of you for all your hard work and all that you are doing to make health care the best it can possibly be.
David C. Pate, M.D., J.D.
President and CEO
St. Luke’s Health System
David C. Pate, M.D., J.D., is president and CEO of St. Luke's Health System, based in Boise, Idaho. Dr. Pate joined the System in 2009. He received his medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston and his law degree from the University of Houston Law Center.