Arkansas Hospital Association Health & Science

Arkansas Hospital Association Annual Meeting

The following article is from Arkansas Hospitals, a custom publication of Vowell, Inc., which also produces Arkansas Money & Politics.


Were you a part of the nearly 350 health care professionals who attended this year’s October Annual Meeting of the Arkansas Hospital Association (AHA), and its concurrent sold-out Trade Show that was completely reformulated for 2017? We were proud to have on hand hospital administrators, leaders, managers, trustees, nurses and physicians, along with a large number of hospital volunteers who joined us for a memorable keynote address.

Keynote speaker Ben Nemtin, author and co-star of MTV’s The Buried Life, took us on a part of his inspiring life journey, which is guided, in part, by Earl Nightingale’s words, “Never give up on a dream because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.” Nemtin and three friends made a list of 100 Things They Want to Do Before They Die and set out to accomplish them. The caveat – the four must, in turn, help those who help them.

Other speakers explained changes to Medicaid and their expected implications for Arkansas; demonstrated how to engage employees in living your hospital’s mission statement; examined the nation’s opioid epidemic; gave hospital leaders, compliance officers and legal counsel the opportunity to share challenges met; shared coaching skills necessary to drive performance; and explored the health care organization’s role in formulating public policy.

This year’s winner of the A. Allen Weintraub Memorial Award, the highest honor bestowed upon an individual by the AHA, is William “Bill” Bradley, who has served more than 30 years as a hospital executive, including stints as the CEO of Arkansas hospitals in Springdale and Russellville. He has been the CEO of Washington Regional Medical System in Fayetteville since 2004, and as the 2017 Weintraub Award recipient, he exemplifies concern for patients and employees, engagement in both the hospital and the community and a dedication to the provision of quality health care.

The 2017 Distinguished Service Awards went to Bill Fisher of Paragould for his 28 years of service to the Arkansas Methodist Medical Center and its Foundation’s board of directors and for his part in envisioning a top-quality retirement community for the region’s aging citizens; and to Batesville physicians Jeff Angel and Chris Steel for their leadership in the planning and initiation of White River Health System programs designed to improve health outcomes, reduce costs and advance community health.

Kourtney Matlock, assistant vice president at Baptist Health, was presented with the C.E. Melville Young Administrator of the Year Award, which is given annually by the Arkansas Health Executives Forum. The award is named for a long time administrator at Jefferson Regional Medical Center and recognizes outstanding service by a health care administrator under the age of 40.

The Arkansas Hospital Auxiliary Association named Patrick Kerrwood, CEO of Siloam Springs Regional Hospital, Administrator of the Year for hospitals with less than 100 beds. Eric Pianalto, CEO of Mercy Hospital Northwest Arkansas, was named Administrator of the Year for hospitals with more than 100 beds. The awards were presented at the opening session of the Arkansas Hospital Association Annual Meeting in Little Rock.

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