Mission Health president and CEO Ronald A. Paulus, MD, among top 50 in nation

Press release from Mission Health:


Mission Health President and CEO Ronald A. Paulus, MD, Among Top 50 in Nation

Ranked No. 20 of 50 Most Influential Physician Executives and Leaders by Modern Healthcare

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (May 13, 2014) – Mission Health President and CEO Ronald A. Paulus, MD, has been named one of the nation’s “Top 50 Most Influential Physician Executives and Leaders” by Modern Healthcare. The program honors physicians working in the health care industry who are deemed by their peers and an expert panel to be the most influential in terms of demonstrating leadership and impact.

“I congratulate Dr. Paulus on this very well-deserved award. He has been a driving force of positive change in our system since he joined Mission Health in September of 2010,” said Robert C. Roberts, Chairman of the Board of Directors for Mission Health. “Under Dr. Paulus’s leadership, we at Mission Health have worked continuously to provide high quality care, close to home for all of the people we serve across western North Carolina.”

“Dr. Paulus is no stranger to hard work and determination,” said Wyatt S. Stevens, Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors for Mission Health. “He grew up very modestly in a rural area of Pennsylvania, and had to stay focused and work diligently to get where he is today. That ability to maintain a singleness of purpose has served him and Mission Health well over the last several years. I applaud Dr. Paulus for this recognition of his hard work and look forward to working with him to continue improving the health and wellness of western North Carolina.”

In 2010, Dr. Paulus introduced a concept to Mission Health called the BIG(GER) Aim. The BIG(GER) Aim is to get each patient to the desired outcome, first without harm, also without waste and with an exceptional experience for the patient and family. Since that time, Mission Health’s patient satisfaction rate has improved dramatically. According to Professional Research Consultants, which conducts an annual patient experience survey for Mission Health, patient satisfaction scores have increased by approximately 25 percent, up from 65 percent in 2010 to 90 percent in 2013.

Dr. Paulus has consistently focused on improving clinical outcomes, care efficiency and patient experience in every aspect of care. As a result, Mission Hospital’s mortality rate is among the very best performing hospitals in the nation. Continued work in quality and safety over the past three years has reduced hospital death rates by more than 500 people per year. The chance of someone dying at Mission Hospital is more than 40% less than the average U.S. hospital. In addition, Mission Hospital’s readmission rate is lower than expected given the severity of the patients served.

“Our focus at Mission Health is on our patients, their outcomes and their satisfaction with the care we provide. Under Dr. Paulus’s leadership, patient safety and physician engagement in leadership have been consistent areas of focus for management,” said Alan Johnson, MD, Chief of Staff at Mission Health. “That focus starts with evaluating patient safety events, setting quality goals and then implementing action plans. Every aspect of our care delivery is impacted as we strive to deliver the right care for the right patient at the right time.”

“I am extremely honored to be named one of the Top 50 Most Influential Physician Executives and Leaders. I owe a debt of gratitude to the caregivers at Mission Health. Without their dedication, support and commitment, this would not be possible,” said Ronald A. Paulus, MD, President and CEO of Mission Health. “Mission Health has a remarkable legacy of improving the lives of the people of western North Carolina through compassionate, innovative health care and the work of dedicated clinicians and caregivers. Mission Health is a renowned provider of quality care, recognized locally and nationally for continually improving quality and safety. I am proud to be a part of the Mission Health family.”

As additional evidence of Dr. Paulus’s strong leadership, Mission Health was named again this year as one of the nation’s Top 15 Health Systems by Truven Health Analytics for an unprecedented third year in a row. The honor underscores Mission Health’s commitment to outstanding care, clinical excellence and the communities of western North Carolina. The Truven Health study identifies the nation’s 15 best health systems and is the only study that aggregates both individual hospital and health system-level performance to allow health system leaders and consumers to understand how to identify and compare leaders in clinical quality and efficiency.

Mission Hospital, Mission Health’s flagship hospital, was also named one of Truven Health’s Top 100 Hospitals for a record sixth consecutive year.

As part of his on-going effort to improve the delivery of health care to the people of western North Carolina, Dr. Paulus and his leadership team, along with Mission Health’s physicians, caregivers, patients and their families, have embarked on Mission re:DESIGN, a $350 million dollar project that will redesign the care delivery model, enabling more efficient care delivery, better outcomes and a positive patient experience.

About Ronald A. Paulus, MD

Dr. Paulus received his medical degree from The School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania. In addition to his medical degree, he also holds a master’s degree in business administration with a concentration in health care management and a Bachelor of Science in Economics from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. He has published multiple articles and speaks regularly on the topics of health care quality and efficiency, innovation, physician leadership and new models of care.

Prior to joining Mission Health in 2010, Dr. Paulus served as Executive Vice President of Clinical Operations at Geisinger Health System. There, he was responsible for the operations of its $1.3 billion clinical enterprise (including three hospitals, a 750+ multispecialty group practice and more than 40 ambulatory care facilities). While at Geisinger, Dr. Paulus also served as Chief Innovation Officer, responsible for ensuring system-wide innovation.

Prior to joining Geisinger, Dr. Paulus was Co-founder, President and CEO of CareScience, Inc. (previously NASDAQ: CARE), now part of Premier health care informatics, a clinical solutions and data analytics provider that aims to improve the quality and efficiency of health care. Before that, he served as Vice President of Operations at Salick Health Care, Inc. (previously NASDAQ: SHCl), a national provider of oncology and dialysis services acquired by Zeneca Pharmaceuticals.
About Mission Health

Mission Health, based in Asheville, N.C., is the state’s sixth-largest health system and the region’s only not-for-profit, independent community hospital system governed and managed exclusively in western North Carolina. Mission Health was recognized as one of the nation’s Top 15 Health Systems in 2012 and 2013 by Thomson Reuters and Truven Health Analytics, respectively. Mission Health is one of only two medium-sized health systems to receive this recognition in 2012 and 2013, and the only health system in North Carolina to achieve that distinction.

Mission Health, which traces its roots in the region back to 1885, operates six hospitals, numerous outpatient and surgery centers, post-acute care provider CarePartners, and the region’s only dedicated Level II trauma center. Its medical staff consists of more than 1,000 physicians and is certified in more than 50 medical specialties and sub-specialties. Mission Health has seven Centers of Excellence: Cancer, Heart, Mission Children’s Hospital, Neurosciences, Orthopedics, Trauma and Women’s Health. Mission Hospital, located in Asheville, is the system’s flagship hospital and is licensed for 730 beds. It is the regional referral center for tertiary and quaternary care. It also includes Mission Children’s Hospital – the region’s only children’s hospital. Other Mission Health member hospitals include Angel Medical Center in Franklin, Blue Ridge Regional Hospital in Spruce Pine, Highlands-Cashiers Hospital in Highlands, McDowell Hospital in Marion and Transylvania Regional Hospital in Brevard. With approximately 10,600 employees and 2,000 volunteers, Mission Health is dedicated to improving the health and wellness of the people of western North Carolina. For more information, please visit mission-health.org.

About Lea McLellan
Lea McLellan is a freelance writer who likes to write stories about music, art, food, wellness and interesting locals doing interesting things.

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One thought on “Mission Health president and CEO Ronald A. Paulus, MD, among top 50 in nation

  1. Linda Ross

    I think it is so very sad for my community and for myself that Mission Hospital has chosen to discontinue the drive through flu shot clinic. It was a successful community gesture and now the big wigs in their ivory towers choose to stop giving back to the communities because of, as I am sure, money. It probably was not a huge money maker but I say shame on all of you for taking a valued service away from this small mountain community because of the almighty dollar.

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