The past couple of years have been times of triumph and tragedy, of unprecedented collaboration and innovation. The healthcare industry has continued to battle COVID-19 and save lives while running their organizations and tackling multiple other challenges.
Last night, the editors of D CEO had an opportunity to do just that as we honored the finalists in our 2021 Excellence in Healthcare Awards in a live event at On the Levee, where we celebrated our winners and finalists.
Children’s Health was named Outstanding Health System, and Jim Scoggin won Hospital Executive of the Year. Dr. William C. Roberts of Baylor Scott & White Health received the Lifetime Achievement Award.
For more about all of our winners, see below. And to see a complete list of finalists, click here.
Outstanding Community Outreach
National Association of Hispanic Nurses, Dallas Chapter
The nonprofit organization focuses on advancing health in Hispanic communities and leading, promoting, and advocating for educational, professional, and leadership opportunities for Hispanic nurses. During the pandemic, communities of color have been disproportionately impacted because of health disparity. In Dallas County, the Hispanic/Latino community accounts for approximately 40 percent of the population, and lack of education and access has resulted in a low number of vaccination rates. The organization has volunteered to host vaccine drives in community centers and churches and has done interviews for Telemundo 39 to reach the Spanish-speaking community about COVID-19.
Achievement in Innovation
TimelyMD has a mission to improve the well-being of college students by making virtual medical and mental health care accessible anytime in a time of life when many mental health issues arrive. The solution meets the top concern of college presidents during the pandemic—the mental health of students. The impact is clear. 68 percent of its visits have been for mental health since the pandemic versus 10 percent before COVID-19, 60 percent of students who have used the service for mental health support said they wouldn’t have done anything otherwise, and a third of its mental health visits are after regular hours.
Outstanding Medical Research
UT Southwestern Medical Center and Texas Health Resources
Last year, UT Southwestern partnered with local organizations and community leaders to launch groundbreaking research to gain actionable insights into the spread of COVID-19 in North Texas. The goal of the Prevalence Study was to understand how many people, by demographic subgroups, were or had been infected in Dallas and Tarrant counties to help develop strategies to improve public health. UTSW recruited more than 21,300 individuals over an eight-month period in Dallas and Tarrant counties and launched a longitudinal study to investigate how long antibodies confer protection against COVID-19, whether from prior infection or vaccination.
Outstanding Wellness Program
Baylor Scott & White Health
Baylor Scott & White Health’s program is a multi-channel, comprehensive effort to encourage colleagues to prioritize their physical and emotional health. The goal is to break down the stigma of asking for help and let their teams know that it is OK to not be OK, and provide the tools essential for rejuvenation. The program includes expert articles, downloadable resources, video tips, and ways to take action immediately. Importantly, each page includes links for online or in-person support services for those who need to talk about a concern and links to related programs and helps employees categorize between personal, spiritual, rest, creativity, nature, and other aspects of life.
Outstanding Real Estate Project
Texas Health Resources
The winning project stands out because of its size, scope, and state-of-the-art technology and equipment. The $300 million, nine-story patient bed Jane ad John Justin Surgical Tower at Texas Health Fort Worth, which is planned for completion in early 2022, will add 144 patient beds, 15 surgical suites, and a new pre-operative and post-operative services area. The tower is the largest construction project in the history of the winning system, and its surgical suites are expected to increase the hospital’s daily surgical capacity by almost 30 percent.
Outstanding Merger or Acquisition
Steward Health Care
The deal is a $1.1 billion acquisition of five Florida hospitals previously owned by Tenet Healthcare. The agreement includes hospital operations and physician practices. It is the first acquisition since the company finalized full physician control last year. This transaction will bring Steward’s total hospital count to 44 worldwide and more than double its presence in Florida. The network serves more than 12.3 million patients across the United States, Colombia, and Malta through its more than 5,500 providers and 43,000 health care professionals.
Outstanding Healthcare Collaboration
Nexus Recovery Center and Parkland Health & Hospital System
This partnership began in 1990 and includes the treatment of adult women and their children who are suffering the ramifications of addiction, and includes the only treatment center in North Texas that accepts women in the late stages of pregnancy and allows children to accompany their mothers into treatment. The pandemic exacerbated drug abuse and addiction, but our winners worked together to serve 1,890 clients and raised $1.5 million in private donations without special events to expand services, while less than 0.25% of total clients served for the year tested positive for COVID-19.
Outstanding Health System
Every health system in North Texas has played an essential role in fighting through the pandemic, but Children Health’s commitment to expanding services to add behavioral health services and train and provide guidance to primary care physicians treating behavioral health, made it stand out. Children’s Health is expanding into underserved southern Dallas, developed a partnership with a local mental health provider, and reached out into schools during a time when children were plagued with mental health issues.
Outstanding Healthcare Advocate
Robert Ferguson, Texas Health Resources
Ferguson’s volunteer leadership roles include advocating for quality, safety, and accessibility of healthcare for North Texas communities since 2001, including the board of trustees on both Presbyterian hospital and Texas Health Resources while serving TD Industries for 45 years and serving as managing director. His service included the development of Texas Health’s relationship with Aetna and UT Southwestern Medical Center, as ways that Texas Health is innovating healthcare access, delivery, and affordability. He was on the Texas Health board during the creation of the Texas Health Aetna health plan and Southwestern Health Resources, an integrated health network.
Outstanding Healthcare Innovator
Vicki Nolen, CHRISTUS Health
Nolen has oversight for virtual care and telemedicine for the 26 acute care hospitals and 105+ physician offices, as well as our international ministries in Chile, Colombia, and Mexico. She has led the development of new models for providing innovative care through telemedicine both within the hospital setting and for outpatient ambulatory visits. She is a licensed vocational nurse and was her school’s valedictorian, but then went on to get a number of advanced degrees and is in the process of a PhD in Psychology. But what makes her stand out is her ability to build relationships at all levels of the organization.
Outstanding Healthcare Practitioner
Jeffrey Zsohar, Baylor Scott & White Health
Zsohar is the medical director of Baylor Scott & White Health’s Community Care Clinics, where he oversees seven clinics that target 13,500 high-risk patients with chronic medical conditions across more than 41,900 encounters. The sites provide multi-specialty care in a single location and serve a population that is 85 percent uninsured with incomes at or more than 200 percent below the federal poverty line. His approach is unique in that he looks at the social determinants of health such as food insecurity, transportation, and housing barriers, all of which became even more important during the COVID-19 pandemic. His value-based strategy is not only holistic but cost-effective as well.
Outstanding Healthcare Volunteer
Kristen Baidy, Children’s Health
Baidy is one of the longest-serving and most passionate volunteers at Children’s Health and has been volunteering with the health system for an incredible 14 years. She has worked to make genuine connections with patient families and has never met a stranger. As an adult with Down syndrome, she makes an impression on patients and families because of her hard work and warm presence. She sets an example for all of the patients that they can do anything they put their mind to and is a role model for every patient throughout the hospital.
Outstanding Healthcare Executive
Stuart Archer, Oceans Healthcare
Archer began his healthcare career by way of college football. As a young coach, he supplemented his income with a second job as a nurse’s aide in a long-term acute care hospital, and through that experience, he realized healthcare was his calling. He has since built a career supporting the growth of organizations in the acute and post-acute sectors of the industry. The stress of the pandemic accounted for a sharp rise in the number of individuals seeking help for anxiety and depression, and Mental Health America noted a 93 percent increase in anxiety screens and a 62% increase in depression screens compared to 2019. Oceans Healthcare has doubled in size over the past four years and opened five new behavioral health hospitals, and announced plans for three additional locations this year.
Outstanding Hospital Executive
Jim Scoggin Jr., Methodist Health
Scoggin came out of retirement to lead the only health system based in southern Dallas, where health disparities are greatest and where the past two years of the pandemic have had the greatest impact. Before his current position, he was a health executive in Texas for more than 30 years. Methodist Health responded to the crisis positively and proactively by offering premium pay for staff working in COVID-19 patient care areas, by expanding its critical needs program to assure appropriate overall staff availability, by providing payroll protection for all staff whose workloads were significantly diminished and has not lost a single employee to layoffs. It was also the first to receive COVID-19 vaccines and opened two wholly-owned hospitals in 2021.
Lifetime Achievement Award
William C. Roberts, Baylor Scott & White Health
Roberts followed a 30-year career at the National Institutes of Health studying cardiovascular disease and has been the executive director of the Baylor Heart and Vascular Institute at Baylor University Medical Center since 1993. He continues to shape how the profession treats the cause of one of every four deaths in the U.S. He has also served as editor-in-chief of the American Journal of Cardiology. An authority in his field, he has published more than 1,700 articles, authored or edited 31 books, and lectured in more than 2,200 cities worldwide. In 2014, he began the Heart-to-Heart program, allowing cardiac transplant patients to see and hold their former organs. The experience is as profoundly moving as it is personal. He was inspired by a heart transplant patient who wanted to see their own heart, knowing the hospital kept them. In the 160-plus sessions that have happened since Dr. Roberts meets with patients and gives them a chance to see and hold their broken hearts. He uses the organ as an educational tool, cross-sectioned to show the damage done to the organ. “I try to stress to these people that they are very lucky. They are one of the few that get a heart.” One nominator said, “No one in cardiovascular medicine is more deserving of this lifetime achievement award. He has indeed experienced a lifetime of achievement as the most important and accomplished cardiovascular pathologist of his era.”