In recent weeks Democratic candidates seeking the party’s nomination have given their preferences about how to reform U.S. health care. My experience in over 30 years of community hospital leadership led me to agree with the comments of John Delaney that Medicare-For-All would be a financial disaster for the vast majority of American hospitals. Very few U.S. hospitals have costs at or below Medicare payments.
Yet I don’t agree with Congressman Delaney’s statement that we shouldn’t touch the private health coverage market that covers 100 million Americans because those people will want to keep their coverage. I think there are a great number of Americans in the private coverage spectrum who have been saddled with enormous up-front deductibles and large co-payments and ever-narrowing health provider options who are ready to talk.
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Phil Ennen is an experienced senior executive who believes in servant leadership. Phil became CEO of an independent community hospital just before the national recession. He led the organization through difficult restructuring while at the same time completing a $62M new construction/renovation on time and on budget. The hospital came through the recession much changed but since 2011 has strengthened both its financial position and clinical performance. Phil accomplished this by empowering leaders to build an environment of honesty and trust. He has nurtured lasting relationships with physicians, frontline staff, community leaders, and patients by first listening and then by sharing his thoughts with transparent honesty. Phil also became a statewide leader for Ohio hospitals, serving as board chair of the Ohio Hospital Association and receiving the James Castle distinguished service award in June 2018.