Hospital president & CEO wins prestigious award for his innovation and success in health care
Dr. Robert Kent, Summa Western Reserve Hospital President and CEO, was recently named an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 award winner. The award, which recognizes leaders displaying outstanding excellence in industry innovation, financial performance and personal commitment to their business and communities, was presented at an evening gala event, held at Playhouse Square in Cleveland.
In accepting the award, Dr. Kent noted the recognition represented the dedicated commitment of the entire Summa Western Reserve community in staying true to the vision of the hospital.
“I would not be here tonight if it were not for the dedicated physicians, nurses and every staff member that believed health care needed to change. Our commitment to challenging the status quo of how a hospital should operate has been met with industry reluctance, bureaucratic barriers and regional market resistance. But our dogged perseverance to the mission of always putting the patient first has allowed us to hurdle those obstacles, proving the naysayers wrong, and finding us early and continued success. I couldn’t have done that alone.”
Dr. Kent was recognized for his leadership in the creation of Summa Western Reserve Hospital, and its resultant transformation of the former Cuyahoga Falls General Hospital into a successful physician-led, for-profit institution, in a 3-year span. The turnaround was responsible for retaining more than 600 jobs, developing a new tax base for the community that didn’t previously exist and preserving a source of much-needed high-quality healthcare. The key, according to Dr. Kent, was following the belief that physicians and other clinicians have a better understanding of how to operationalize health care delivery than nonclinical individuals.
“Since the hospital’s inception, our physician leaders have envisioned a health care delivery environment operating with four concurrent drivers: patients receive the highest quality, most convenient healthcare; every patient, at every point of entry, is treated like a family member by the entire health care delivery community; physicians serve in leadership roles throughout the delivery organization, and finally, but equally important, the institution delivering the care is profitable,” said Dr. Kent. “While those four goals sound incongruous to many health care industry insiders, our undeniable success at making that vision a reality with Summa Western Reserve Hospital is represented with our winning this esteemed award.”
Now in its 26th year, the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year program has become the most prestigious business program in the country and celebrates America's most innovative business leaders in more than 140 cities and 50 countries around the world.