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Updated: May 25, 2020 The Power 50 Class of 2020

2020 Power 50: Eric W. Dickson, MD, MHCM, FACEP

Dr. Eric W. Dickson, president & CEO of UMass Memorial Health Care
Eric W. Dickson, MD, MHCM, FACEP
  • Title: President & CEO
  • Company: UMass Memorial Health Care
  • Located: Worcester
  • Residence: Princeton
  • Colleges: Merrimack College, UMass Medical School & Harvard University

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Long before Dickson took on the task of leading a 13,000-employee hospital system through the coronavirus pandemic – and managed a related field hospital at the DCU Center in Worcester – UMass Memorial Health Care’s president and CEO proved himself up to difficult jobs.

When he took over as the system’s leader in 2013, he quickly sold Wing Memorial Hospital and Medical Centers in Palmer, and he and his leadership team cut executive and other costs to turn the system’s budget around. Just before the coronavirus pandemic hit, Dickson made another big play, reaching an agreement in January to bring the 142-bed Harrington Hospital in Southbridge and affiliated medical offices under UMass’ umbrella. As for the pandemic, UMass Memorial quickly tightened visitor policies, postponed elective procedures and moved around intensive care beds to be able to have dedicated units for coronavirus patients. During the peak of the virus, the UMass system had more than 230 coronavirus patients at its hospitals, with dozens in intensive care. Dickson has also led in another way: In early April, he and his wife, Cathy, an emergency medicine physician, said they’d donate their paychecks to a UMass employees fund for as long as Massachusetts is in a state of emergency.

What makes Central Mass. unique? The partnership between the private sector and the public sector is very strong in our region. That has been the case for many years, but this pandemic has shown a bright light on just how strong we all are together. The fact that UMass Memorial Health Care could partner with the City of Worcester and the Commonwealth to stand up a 220-bed field hospital at the DCU Center in just eight days is phenomenal! We were able to do it because we all had the same common goal: To save as many lives in Central Massachusetts as possible.

Giddyup: I also train horses and work with several horse rescue organizations across the state.

Power 50: View the entire Power 50 Class of 2020

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