MED MOVES: Vanderbilt Health names president to lead 3 hospitals, and more

UVA Health hires its first chief of human resources, BayCare Health System selects a CEO, and other leaders take new posts.

Travis Capers has been hired to fill a new role in Vanderbilt Health.

Capers has been selected as the first president of Vanderbilt Regional Community Hospitals. He assumes his new role on Monday, Aug. 15. Capers will lead the community-based hospitals within Vanderbilt Health, the system said in a news release.

Capers has served as president of SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital, a 500-bed hospital in St. Louis, for six years.

“Vanderbilt Health is a world-renowned academic health system delivering exceptional care to patients and improving the future of health care,” Capers said in a statement. “I am excited and humbled to be joining the team as we enhance the health of the communities we’re so blessed to serve.”

Capers will oversee these Vanderbilt community hospitals:

  • Vanderbilt Bedford Hospital in Shelbyville, Tennessee
  • Vanderbilt Tullahoma Harton Hospital in Tullahoma, Tennessee
  • Vanderbilt Wilson County Hospital in Lebanon, Tennessee

Capers will also represent Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s interest in joint operations of Tennova Healthcare – Clarksville in Clarksville, Tennessee. Vanderbilt has a 20% ownership stake in the facility, while Community Health Systems owns 80%.

He brings years of experience in key leadership roles. Earlier, Capers was CEO of Ochsner Medical Center West Bank Region from 2011-2016. In Nashville, he was chief operating officer of HCA TriStar Division Southern Hills Medical Center from 2003-2011.

Capers will report to C. Wright Pinson, deputy CEO and chief health system officer at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Pinson said the leadership team is confident he will be a great fit with the organization.

“Travis has the skills, drive and experience to take on this responsibility,” Pinson said in a statement.

UVA Health names first chief of human resources

UVA Health has named Karmen Fittes as the inaugural chief of UVA Health Human Resources.

In this new role, Fittes will oversee human resources for UVA Health’s various entities. She will join UVA Health on Sept. 1.

Fittes comes to UVA from the University of California, Davis, where she has served as executive director of talent and rewards for the university and its health system since 2016.

UVA Health said Fittes will work to recruit and retain team members to the system.

“I am excited to join UVA in support of the all-important vision to be the nation’s leading public academic health system and best place to work,” Fittes said in a statement.

“I look forward to working with health system leadership, the human resources team and everyone at this leading institution to support workplaces where employees want to work, want to stay, and want to contribute,” she added. “A highly diverse and highly engaged talented workforce is foundational to achieving our objectives.”

Fittes possesses more than a quarter-century of human resources experience, including more than 20 years in the healthcare industry. Before joining UC Davis, she served from 2013 to 2016 as director of organizational effectiveness for Alberta Health Services in Canada.

John Kosky, UVA vice president & chief human resources officer, said Fittes will be a welcome addition to the system.

“She has the right mix of skills, experience, and background to support our team members with opportunities to grow, develop and succeed, as well as to recruit more people to join our mission of transforming health and inspiring hope for everyone,” Kosky said in a statement.

BayCare Health System selects CEO

Stephanie D. Conners has been named the next chief executive officer and president of BayCare Health System in Florida.

BayCare is largest not-for-profit health care provider in west-central Florida and one of the region’s largest employers.

Conners, 50, is succeeding Tommy Inzina, BayCare’s current CEO and president, who plans to retire by the end of the year. Conners, who will join BayCare in October, will be the fourth CEO of the 25-year-old organization.

She’s the executive vice president and chief operating officer for Jefferson Health, the health care system based in Philadelphia.

“I am humbled and honored to lead such a remarkable organization,” Conners said in a statement. “Its legacy of compassionate care is palpable, and I look forward to helping ensure its future success. It is my personal mission to make a difference in the lives of others.”

She has served as Jefferson’s chief operating officer since 2018, but she has spent nearly three decades in the healthcare industry.

In 2002, Conners took her first senior leadership role with Tenet Healthcare as chief nursing officer for Hahnemann University Hospital in Philadelphia, a post she held for a decade. She later served as senior vice president for operations and system chief nursing officer for Robert Wood Johnson University and Bristol-Myers Squibb Children’s hospitals in New Jersey. She also served as chief operating officer and chief nursing officer for Cooper University Health Care in New Jersey.

Rick Colón, chairman of BayCare’s board of trustees, called Conners “an engaging and compassionate leader who will lead BayCare into its next era of serving the community’s health, our team members and our medical community.”

OSF HealthCare names CEO of central region

Bob Anderson has been named chief executive officer of OSF HealthCare’s central region.

Anderson is the president of OSF HealthCare Saint Francis Medical Center, a position he will continue to hold until a replacement is hired. He will begin his new role on Sept. 1.

Anderson replaces Mike Cruz as CEO of the central region. Cruz was recently named chief operating officer of the 15-hospital system based in Illinois. The system’s central region includes OSF Saint Francis, OSF Children’s Hospital of Illinois in the Peoria area, OSF Aviation, and the surrounding Peoria area.

Anderson began his career at OSF HealthCare in 1981 as a medical technologist in the laboratory services department.

He went on to serve as senior vice president and chief operating officer at OSF Saint Francis before becoming the hospital’s president in 2017.

As president, Anderson has led a number of efforts to improve healthcare, including the OSF HealthCare Cancer Institute, which is slated to open on the OSF Saint Francis campus in 2024.

OSF HealthCare is owned and operated by The Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis, based in Peoria, Illinois. The system employs more than 24,000 workers, dubbed “mission partners,” at 150 locations.

El Camino Health hires COO

Meenesh Bhimani has been named the new chief operating officer of El Camino Health in California.

Bhimani began in his new role Aug. 8. He’ll oversee inpatient areas, nursing, the patient experience and all other support services, the organization said.

“I am proud to join an organization with a deeply rooted culture of innovation and safety as well as a commitment to raising the bar in delivering patient care,” Bhimani said in a statement. “These are areas I am passionate about, and I look forward to serving El Camino Health as COO.”

Before joining El Camino Health, Dr. Bhimani served as hospital executive at O’Connor Hospital in San Jose, Calif.. He was also president of Emergency Physicians Associates.

Bhimani is board certified in emergency medicine and was a physician at Kaiser Permanente Greater Southern Alameda County, Washington Hospital, and St. Louise Regional Hospital.

Dan Woods, chief executive officer of El Camino Health, called Bhimani “a great fit for the enterprise.”

“I believe Meenesh’s track record of leadership as both a hospital and physician executive as well as his insight as an emergency medicine physician with more than 20 years of experience will be a valuable addition to our leadership team,” Woods said in a statement.

El Camino operates two nonprofit hospitals in Los Gatos and Mountain View, and primary care, specialty care, and urgent care services throughout Santa Clara County.