Doug Self, chief executive officer for Seneca Healthcare District (SHD), submitted his resignation to the board of directors Friday, April 20.
He has accepted the position of chief operating officer (COO) for the Carson-Tahoe Health System (CTHS), which is based in Carson City.
Self did ask for and receive approval from CTHS to extend his departure from the district for a period of 60 days, which would make June 30, the closing of the district’s 2011-12 fiscal year, his final day at Seneca.
A combination of professional relationships within SHD, the opportunity for professional development, some personal benefit and respect for the new organization factored into his decision to change employers.
Self described CTHS as a private, nonprofit company with no associations outside of Carson City. In his new position, he will have responsibility for a 144-bed hospital, a 15-bed surgical hospital, a 27-bed long-term facility, 28 in-patient psychiatric beds and 16 geriatric psychiatric beds. He will also oversee the four Carson City medical clinics operated by CTHS, two of which are in local Wal-Marts.
“The are approximately 200 physicians in the region, 100 of which are employed by the health care system. I am very impressed with the organization,” Self said.
He also compared CTHS to Seneca and said, “Like Seneca they pretty much provide all of the health care needs of Carson City, only on a larger scale. I do think working for this organization will be an excellent way to pursue professional development while gaining some personal benefit.”
Self was hired by Renown Hospital’s management team to work as SHD’s CEO in early January 2008. He reported to work Feb. 3.
In looking back over the past four years he feels his underlying achievement has been his consistent approach.
“Seneca was an organization that had been in continual turnover, with no consistency for the past five years before I arrived. This was evidenced by the terms of five CEOs in the five prior years.
“My job here has been probably the most professionally rewarding job ever from the standpoint of where we were as a district in 2007-08 to where we are in 2012,” Self said.
He said the biggest complaint he heard in the community was that “the hospital billing has been messed up for over 20 years and can’t possibly ever be fixed.”
“Comments about patients having to wait a year to receive a bill for services were all too common. At this point, I can’t remember the last issue we have had with a delinquent bill. It has been quite awhile,” he said.
He said he took considerable pride in that change.
“The surprise on the faces of some of those patients has been terrific,” he said, while improvements in cash flow to the hospital means it can survive, which “has been equally as rewarding,” he added.
After his tour of service in the United States Navy as a submarine officer, Self graduated with a master’s in business administration from the University of Texas.
It was during this time he was introduced to his career path in hospital administration. Health Management Associates (HMA), a 60-hospital organization headquartered in Naples, Fla., employed many of his peers, who were also prior military.
In his first assignment, he worked as an assistant administrator at a 116-bed hospital in Florida. While continuing to work for the same company he progressed to COO of another hospital and finished his employment with HMA as COO of a hospital in Jackson, Miss.
After departing the East Coast, and prior to arriving in Chester, Self was employed as the COO of Shasta Regional Medical Center in Redding.
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