OneThousandOne represents the amount of time, verbally, that it takes to count to one second. In this one second of time, a great thing happened at Nebraska Medicine. In fact, several great things probably happened. A patient was cured, a researcher found the missing link, a nurse treated an injury, a doctor comforted a family or maybe a child just smiled.
Winter | 2014

A Tribute to Glenn A. Fosdick

After more than 35 years as a leader in health care administration and 12 years as president and CEO of The Nebraska Medical Center, Glenn A. Fosdick has retired.

Fosdick’s legacy will be remembered as one that brought vision to The Nebraska Medical Center while inspiring a new level of quality and excellence in every aspect of the organization.

The Nebraska Medical Center was a much different place in 2001 when Fosdick assumed the position of CEO. Fosdick led the effort to change its name from Nebraska Health System to The Nebraska Medical Center. He put a renewed focus on quality, on finding new ways to practice medicine and improving the way health care was delivered. Three years after taking the helm, The Nebraska Medical Center was first in consumer awareness and preference and had the highest market share in the Omaha metropolitan area.

Under Fosdick’s guidance and leadership, the medical center has extended its reach and has become a regional medical care delivery system that now includes a joint venture orthopedic specialty hospital — Nebraska Orthopaedic Hospital; a suburban cancer center; and a community hospital in Bellevue, Neb., Bellevue Medical Center. It also has relationships with hospitals in Fairfax, Mo., and Shenandoah, Iowa.

Fosdick, a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives, is known nationally as an “out of the box” thinker in health care administration. He encouraged the adoption of programs such as the quality improvement system developed by Toyota, an operating room safety program pioneered by the aviation industry and a customer service plan modeled after five-star hotels.

“Glenn Fosdick has led with conviction, integrity, a pioneering spirit and vision,” says Bruce Lauritzen, chairman of The Nebraska Medical Center Board of Directors. “His commitment and passion for quality health care has helped propel The Nebraska Medical Center to become the leading tertiary care center in the region. I am sure that Glenn will look back for years to come and smile with satisfaction at the difference he’s made in helping to build this health care system.”

“With Glenn Fosdick at the helm, The Nebraska Medical Center has earned a strong reputation for high-quality patient care, effective operations and innovation in today’s rapidly changing health care environment,” says University of Nebraska President James B. Milliken. “Glenn’s leadership, vision and commitment to quality have served the hospital and its partners well and will position us for success in a new era for health care.”

Most recently, Fosdick has advocated locally and nationally about the need for reforming health care and the changes that are taking place. Under his leadership, The Nebraska Medical Center recently implemented a system-wide electronic health record system aimed at improving patient care and efficiency.

“When Glenn arrived 12 years ago, he brought stability and leadership,” says James Canedy, MD, president of Clarkson Regional Health Services. “He’s also helped the medical center build strategic relationships throughout Nebraska and the region.” Fosdick has been heavily involved with a new partnership among nine health systems in Nebraska and, beyond his retirement as president and CEO, he will continue this work on behalf of the medical center.

Prior to his years in Omaha, Fosdick led Hurley Medical Center in Flint, Mich., as president and CEO from 1995-2001. He also served as Hurley’s executive vice president and chief operating officer. Fosdick held senior leadership positions at The Buffalo General Hospital in Buffalo, N.Y. (1980-1992) and Genesee Memorial Hospital in Batavia, N.Y. (1976-1980).

“I have been blessed by a remarkable opportunity to be here for 12 and a half years and to be associated with what I think is the best health care facility not only in Nebraska but in this part of the country,” says Fosdick. “What really makes that possible are not the buildings but the talents and skills of the superior medical staff and employees. They are truly what makes The Nebraska Medical Center the extraordinary place that it is.”

Next article in the Winter | 2014 issue of One Thousand And One:
Decompressing Pain