MED MOVES: Chicago Hospital Cut Off From Vaccines Amid Questions

Media reports say Loretto Hospital administered COVID-19 vaccines at a suburban church where its CEO is a member. The event happened in early February, when shots were in short supply.

Loretto Hospital cut off from doses. The city of Chicago has cut off first doses of COVID-19 vaccine to Loretto Hospital amid an investigation into whether the hospital has been vaccinating ineligible people, including Cook County judges, according to Chicago’s WBEZ and the online outlet Block Club. The second outlet also reported that COVID-19 vaccine shots were administered to more than 200 members of a suburban church attended by Loretto CEO George Miller. A vaccination event at the church occurred in early February, when shots were expanded to people age 65 and older, and vaccines were hard to come by, according to the report. The outlet reported that a hospital spokesperson said Miller asked the city for permission before the event. Loretto Hospital did not explain why people were vaccinated at a church or whether eligibility was verified.

Boatwright named CEO at HSHS. Damond W. Boatwright, who serves as regional president of operations and chair of the Hospital Board at SSM Health Wisconsin near Madison, has been selected as the next top administrator of Hospital Sisters Health System, which operates 15 Catholic hospitals in Illinois and Wisconsin. Hospital officials announced the decision Thursday. Boatwright will be the first Black and first male CEO of the health system when he starts his new job in June. HSHS employs about 15,000 people, according to the statement. The current CEO, Mary Starmann-Harrison, 66, has announced plans to retire in Arizona. She was credited with pursuing partnerships with Southern Illinois University School of Medicine and Springfield Clinic, expanding the system’s medical group and cardiovascular specialty practice, and establishing health insurance products in both Wisconsin and Illinois.

Great Plains Health CEO to retire. Earlier this month, the Great Plains Health Board of Directors, in North Platte, Nebraska, announced the upcoming retirement of CEO Mel McNea, effective in December. McNea has been with the health system more than 30 years—he rose from the position of ultrasound technician to CEO, a position he has held for seven years. The health system said it has launched a national search for his successor. Officials cited the health system’s designation as one of the top rural hospitals in the nation by The Leapfrog Group in both 2019 and 2020. He also developed the Great Plains Physician Network, a clinically integrated network, as well as a wound healing center, the first mobile CT program in western Nebraska the region’s first neurosurgery program.