August 15, 2016
Shop Talk

Smokers, cancer patients concern new Clinton Hospital CEO

PHOTO/BRAD KANE
Lisa Colombo, president and CEO, UMass Memorial – Clinton Hospital

In mid-June, UMass Memorial Health Care named Lisa Colombo as the permanent president and CEO of Clinton Hospital, after she served in an interim capacity since Dec. 1. She took over for Sheila Daly, who was with the hospital for 42 years.

You and Shelia Daly worked together for about a month before she retired. What did you learn in that time period?

I learned the importance of the connection of this organization to the community. This community – Clinton and the surrounding towns – identify Clinton Hospital as their healthcare organization.

What are your plans for the hospital?

I call it my three-legged stool of strategy, which came out very early in my presidency. The most important thing for this community is to preserve the services that have been important to them but also to bring services that may not be here currently but may need to be here based on what the population's health needs are.

The first leg is growth and bringing the right kind of growth for the population.

The second leg is marketing. I say that because we are a little bit of a hidden gem, and I think what may not be well-known to folks is what we can provide on this campus.

The third priority has been the development of philanthropy, which is an important part of any nonprofit organization to make sure you have that basis of support to ensure you can invest in programs and grow the things that are important.

What have you grown?

It has been a little more than seven months, and we have added three new programs. We've grown our endoscopy business here. We now offer endoscopies five days a week when we offered them only two days a week prior to my arrival.

Is endoscopy the one that goes the through the throat?

Yes, it can actually go both ways. Colonoscopies and endoscopies, we actually are expanding all of that work. We have been working very closely with the UMass Division of Gastroenterology to bring those services here. Things that are in the category of primary and preventative services are important both to this community and to the larger direction of where the healthcare industry is headed in order to keep care low cost and high quality. Prevention is a really important strategy in that.

What else is new?

We've also added a lymphedema treatment program. It is a service within our rehabilitation department. We have a specially trained therapist who we sent away for nine weeks of training. It is a very unique disorder that there very few certified therapists for.

What is lymphedema?

Lymphedema is a swelling of the extremities, and it happens most often in patients with a cancer diagnosis. It can be debilitating because people lose function sometimes in their lower extremities. Lymphedema therapy has proven to be effective in reducing the swelling and improving functionality significantly. We have already had several people who have been treated by our therapist and achieved wonderful results.

And the third growth area?

We have become accredited as a Lung Cancer Screening Center of Excellence by the American College of Radiology. That allows us to do low-dose radiation lung cancer screenings.

Why are lung cancer screenings important to the region?

North Central Massachusetts has one of the highest populations of smokers. That is the match between what the community needs and what we want to deliver.

n mid-June, UMass Memorial Health Care named Lisa Colombo as the permanent president and CEO of Clinton Hospital, after she served in an interim capacity since Dec. 1. She took over for Sheila Daly, who was with the hospital for 42 years.

You and Shelia Daly worked together for about a month before she retired. What did you learn in that time period?

I learned the importance of the connection of this organization to the community. This community – Clinton and the surrounding towns – identify Clinton Hospital as their healthcare organization.

What are your plans for the hospital?

I call it my three-legged stool of strategy, which came out very early in my presidency. The most important thing for this community is to preserve the services that have been important to them but also to bring services that may not be here currently but may need to be here based on what the population's health needs are.

The first leg is growth and bringing the right kind of growth for the population.

The second leg is marketing. I say that because we are a little bit of a hidden gem, and I think what may not be well-known to folks is what we can provide on this campus.

The third priority has been the development of philanthropy, which is an important part of any nonprofit organization to make sure you have that basis of support to ensure you can invest in programs and grow the things that are important.

What have you grown?

It has been a little more than seven months, and we have added three new programs. We've grown our endoscopy business here. We now offer endoscopies five days a week when we offered them only two days a week prior to my arrival.

Is endoscopy the one that goes the through the throat?

Yes, it can actually go both ways. Colonoscopies and endoscopies, we actually are expanding all of that work. We have been working very closely with the UMass Division of Gastroenterology to bring those services here. Things that are in the category of primary and preventative services are important both to this community and to the larger direction of where the healthcare industry is headed in order to keep care low cost and high quality. Prevention is a really important strategy in that.

What else is new?

We've also added a lymphedema treatment program. It is a service within our rehabilitation department. We have a specially trained therapist who we sent away for nine weeks of training. It is a very unique disorder that there very few certified therapists for.

What is lymphedema?

Lymphedema is a swelling of the extremities, and it happens most often in patients with a cancer diagnosis. It can be debilitating because people lose function sometimes in their lower extremities. Lymphedema therapy has proven to be effective in reducing the swelling and improving functionality significantly. We have already had several people who have been treated by our therapist and achieved wonderful results.

And the third growth area?

We have become accredited as a Lung Cancer Screening Center of Excellence by the American College of Radiology. That allows us to do low-dose radiation lung cancer screenings.

Why are lung cancer screenings important to the region?

North Central Massachusetts has one of the highest populations of smokers. That is the match between what the community needs and what we want to deliver.

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