Kimberly A. Lumia, MSN, MBA, RN, FACHE, Chapter President
Fellow CTAHE Members, Sponsors and Colleagues,
The last few months have been a blur and I personally want to express my gratitude for all the healthcare systems in Connecticut and the care of patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. While none of us have experienced a pandemic, I am extremely proud of the care that has been provided by our leadership and members of the Chapter. I have listened to the patient stories and they are nothing short of miraculous.
I would like to recap some of the late winter/early spring events the chapter held prior to the Governor declaring the “Stay Safe, Stay Home” executive order. The Chapter was able to hold its 3rd Annual Career Fair on February 28th at the Connecticut Hospital Association, which featured Regent for Connecticut Denise Fiore, FACHE and I as the Keynote Speakers. We saw an incredible turnout of students from not only Connecticut, but New York as well. I would also like to extend my thanks to the thirteen employers that attended to offer post graduate opportunities to our students. We also could not have held such a successful event for our students without our sponsors for this year’s fair: the Connecticut Hospital Association, Fairfield University Egan School of Nursing and Health Studies and J.Fiereck Photography. CTAHE was also able to get in one in-person qualified education event on Thursday, March 5th at Waterbury Hospital, in partnership with Chapter Annual Gold Sponsor RestorixHealth at their new Center for Wound Healing. “Prosperity in Partnership: Managing the Management” saw over 30 attendees for a great night of networking and education.
Who knew that only a week later all non-essential workers would be requested to work from home and quarantine while all healthcare workers became essential and ran towards the frontlines with incredible amounts of courage and bravery? Many, if not all healthcare leaders assumed roles very different from their day to day positions and staff line positions redeployed to different areas of their organization, all in support of providing the utmost in patient care and employee health and safety in these unprecedented times. CTAHE highlighted many of these stories in our recent “Healthcare Heroes” film debut, and I look forward to more that will be shared over the coming months.
Bravo to our Chapter, who saw the need to provide continued engagement to our members throughout the pandemic and adapted quickly to offer virtual programming in the form of educational webinars and virtual networking After 5’s and Coffee Chats. Our first virtual event was held on April 1st, and from there we have held one every other week throughout. CTAHE also saw the value of partnering with our neighboring ACHE chapters Rhode Island and Massachusetts and co-hosted multiple programs such as “Digging Deep: Lessons from the Field”, “Recovery & Cash Flow Stabilization: Revenue Cycle Perspective” sponsored by BRG, “The Resiliency Challenge” and “The C-Suite on the Frontlines During the COVID-19 Crisis”. We also continued our annual sponsorship of The Yale Healthcare Conference as they went virtual and we had a small delegation virtually attend!
Last week, we brought you our innovative Virtual Annual Meeting: “Healthcare’s Paradigm Shift”. The program featured “Micro-Keynote” sessions presented by Dr. David Gruen, Deputy Chief Medical Officer for IBM Watson Health on “Burnout in Healthcare” and Dr. Barry Stein, Vice President and Chief Clinical Innovation Officer for Hartford HealthCare on “Crisis Innovation”, an incredible panel session on the Disparities of Care and At-Risk Populations by four of Connecticut’s top public health leaders, our Member and Regent Awards Ceremonies and the Induction of our 2020-2021 Board!
I would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate our many students who graduated this spring. I know that many missed out celebrating with classmates, friends, and family. My thoughts are with them, and I know that their future contributions to the healthcare field after living through this pandemic will be that much more valued and needed as the delivery of healthcare shifts yet again.
CTAHE has a seen a great number of members affected by COVID-19 financially, and because of this we are creating the “CTAHE Gives Back” scholarship fund, which the registration fees from the virtual annual meeting went towards. The scholarship application process will go live this summer to help keep our members active in the Chapter – stay tuned as we roll that out!
As the chapter moves into the summer and we move towards our post-pandemic reality, we look towards being the first ACHE Chapter to offer a Virtual 6 Credit Face to Face Program! “Possibilities, Probabilities and Creative Solutions: Breakthrough Thinking for Complex Environments“, presented by Kevin O’Connor, CSP, will be a three part course starting on July 8th. The Chapter is thrilled to offer this at a significantly discounted rate of $175.00 to all ACHE Members. Preparations are also under way for the 5th Anniversary of CTAHE’s Golf Outing. It will be held on Monday, August 24th at Tunxis Country Club. Co-Chairs Gary Havican and Robert Weiss are in the process of planning this event in accordance with the Open CT phased approach following all necessary rules. I hope you will all join us out on the course for a beautiful day of socially distanced fun! Please follow your nationally recognized chapter on all our social media channels: Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn, to keep up with all future programming.
Our chapter also issued a statement in light of what is happening in our nation right now. The Connecticut Association of Healthcare Executives stands by our commitment to promote diversity and build inclusive organizations. Your local chapter understands this is a journey that looks to assist leaders in creating opportunities to promote, celebrate, and protect people of diverse backgrounds. Now more than ever, CTAHE remains steadfast in our commitment to sponsor programming that brings us together to address inequities in our health systems starting from the top. In the past year we have sponsored experts who help leaders attract and foster greater diversity in healthcare organizations. Our Diversity and Inclusion committee seeks to develop and share strategies to help leaders build inclusive organizations that thrive. I am proud of the work that we have done and the work that we will continue to do as we grow and learn.
As I head in the last year of my Presidency, I am still humbled and honored to serve you all. I am only a phone call away – I always want to know how I can help you and I look forward to another successful year. I dedicate this message to all of you, our healthcare heroes; we are stronger together.
May your summers be safe, happy, and healthy.