St. Francis Hospital’s search for a permanent chief executive officer ended on Monday when interim CEO Dan Jones was appointed effective immediately, the hospital announced in a news release.
Jones, a career hospital executive, has been in the interim role since August when former CEO David Koontz resigned. The move was made by Tennessee-based LifePoint Health, which is the parent company of St. Francis.
Jones said he was impressed with St. Francis’ reputation in the community.
“St. Francis has a tremendous amount of reputation and relationship that has been cultivated with the community in the decades since its founding,” Jones said. “It impressed me as a healthcare executive.”
Jones demonstrated a strong commitment to St. Francis and its communities since serving as interim CEO, said Cherie Sibley, COO of LifePoint Health’s Central Group.
“His leadership and passion for ensuring the delivery of high-quality care and ensuring St. Francis continues to be a place where people choose to come for care, physicians want to practice and employees want to work will ensure the continued growth and success of St. Francis into the future,” Sibley said. “We are thrilled he is assuming this role on a permanent basis.”
Jones has more than 20 years of healthcare leadership experience – ranging in scope from daily hospital operations and multi-site health system management to ambulatory and inpatient care and strategic planning and execution, according to the news release.
Jones has a master’s degree in health services administration from Virginia Commonwealth University. He has worked for hospitals or health care companies in Phoenix, Kansas City, New Orleans and Charlotte. Most recently, he was CEO of Abrazo Community Health Network in Phoenix.
At Abrazo Central Campus, a 280-bed, two-campus system in Phoenix, Jones led a successful strategic turnaround effort that specifically addressed leadership stability, company culture, clinical reliability, operational efficiencies and employee engagement, according to the news released.
“When Dan joined the St. Francis team, it became quickly apparent what a great fit he is for this hospital and community," said Steve Butler, chairman of St. Francis’ board of directors. "His leadership skills, warm personality and commitment to our mission made him feel like family from the start. We are delighted that he is staying on at St. Francis to lead our hospital moving forward."
Jones said St. Francis is a good fit for him.
“I have enjoyed getting to know St. Francis physicians, employees, volunteers and community members these last few months and consider it a privilege to have the opportunity to grow these relationships and advance our shared mission,” said Jones. “St. Francis is a fantastic hospital with a deep and caring culture, and I look forward to contributing to the great work that is being done here to advance healthcare in Columbus and surrounding communities.”
LifePoint purchased St. Francis two years ago when the then-non-profit hospital was under significant financial stress due to fiscal mismanagement by the prior management team.
Jones said he has been focusing on improving processes and returning the hospital to profitability in his four months in Columbus.
“I can tell you that we have had two continuing months of positive earnings,” Jones said.
St. Francis Hospital is a 376-bed facility that offers a full range of inpatient, outpatient and emergency room services and is the only area hospital offering open heart surgery. With more than 2,800 employees, 300 physicians and the latest technology, we strive to help you regain and maintain your health. Our overriding goal is to provide you with the best possible care.