Ascension Exec Cacchione to Become Jefferson Health CEO

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Ascension executive Joseph Cacchione, M.D., has been named the new CEO of Thomas Jefferson University and Jefferson Health in Philadelphia.

Most recently, Cacchione served as executive vice president, clinical and network services, for Ascension, a $28 billion organization with 165,000 employees across 145 hospitals and more than 2,600 care sites in 19 states and the District of Columbia. Before his current role, he served as CEO of Ascension Michigan with 15 hospitals and 22,000 employees.

Cacchione replaces Stephen Klasko, M.D., M.B.A., who retired effective Dec. 31, 2021. Under Klasko’s leadership over eight years, Jefferson Health grew from three hospitals to 18 with revenues that grew from $1.5 billion to more than $6.7 billion, annualized. It recently completed a merger with Einstein Healthcare Network.

In June, as part of its planning for a new senior executive operating model, the Thomas Jefferson University Board of Trustees appointed Mark Tykocinski, M.D., as the next president of Thomas Jefferson University. Tykocinski, and Jefferson Health President Bruce Meyer, M.D., M.B.A., will each report directly to Cacchione. Tykocinski previously served as the provost and executive vice president for academic affairs of Thomas Jefferson University, and as the Anthony F. and Gertrude M. DePalma Dean of Jefferson’s Sidney Kimmel Medical College (SKMC).

Before his time at Ascension, Cacchione spent eight years at the Cleveland Clinic, where he played an enterprise role in business development while also serving as chairman of operations and strategy for its Heart and Vascular Institute. Before that, he served as executive vice president and chief of quality and operations at Saint Vincent’s Health System in Erie, Pa., where he oversaw the development of several service lines, including orthopedics, oncology, neuroscience and cardiovascular. Previously, he spent the first 20 years of his professional career as a private practice cardiologist and large private physician practice executive.

The search was led by Leslie McNamara, vice chair of the Jefferson Board of Trustees, and was guided by the work the board already had begun years ago around the “CEO of the Future.”

“The search committee was immediately struck by Dr. Cacchione’s ability to transform and manage complex organizations with a clear vision, while building diverse and high-performing teams to execute against a well-defined strategy,” McNamara said in a statement. “That approach will serve Jefferson well as we map out what’s next.”

Jefferson cited some of Cacchione’s recent accomplishments:

  • Led Ascension Michigan’s multimillion-dollar statewide health system, including planning and directing a significant turnaround in one year through revenue growth and stewardship.
  • Played an instrumental role in creating a new strategic plan focused on moving the organization to a differentiated quality, value and consumer centricity.
  • Led Ascension’s enterprise initiative to centralize operations and unite stakeholders around a common purpose and vision, transforming the organization from disparate operating entities into one unified operating company.
  • Launched a proprietary ACA plan to address the needs of uninsured patients.

     • Developed and oversaw system-wide strategies to integrate NIH’s Equity consensus categories into Ascension’s culture and operations through successful internal initiatives, external affiliations and data applications.

     • Created a data-informed Community Impact Department combining mission and clinical perspectives on Social Determinants of Health and Health Equity.

     • Grew Ascension’s employed physician enterprise by 25 percent over four years, improved financial performance, and improved physician well-being index by 30 percent.

“I am honored to be the next CEO of Jefferson Health and Thomas Jefferson University. Jefferson has long served as a national model for excellence in care delivery, higher education, discovery and innovation,” said Cacchione, in a statement. “I look forward to working together with the dedicated Jefferson team to continue the remarkable work they have done around creating one of the nation’s most respected healthcare organizations and distinctive universities. I believe in organizations that make their communities better, and I can think of no better example than Jefferson.”

 



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