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Sisters of Charity Health System announces reorganization

An executive reorganization at Sisters of Charity Health System has put Cleveland’s St. Vincent Charity Hospital under greater control of the system’s chief executive officer and triggered the departure of the hospital’s president.

Updated: 3:20 p.m.

CLEVELAND, Ohio — An executive reorganization at Sisters of Charity Health System has put Cleveland’s St. Vincent Charity Hospital under greater control of the system’s chief executive officer and triggered the departure of the hospital’s president.

The change should cut costs and make the health system more efficient, while member hospitals will get more access to executive expertise at the top of the health system, according to a Sisters of Charity release. Five hospitals are part of the Sisters of Charity Health System: St. Vincent; St. John West Shore in Cleveland’s Western suburbs; Mercy Medical Center in Canton, Ohio; and Providence Hospital and Providence Hospital Northeast in South Carolina. The system also has a series of senior care centers and other facilities.

Sister Judith Ann Karam, the president and chief executive of the health system, will now hold the same positions at St. Vincent. Jeff Jeney, who served as St. Vincent’s president and chief executive officer, has left the system.

Jeney had been offered other positions within the health system, according to a hospital press release, but he chose to leave to pursue other options in his career. Jeney was not immediately available for comment. Karam called Jeney a “wonderful leader.”

St. Vincent will now increase its focus on physician recruitment and continue to tout its diabetes, bariatric and orthopedic spine centers for patients, Karam said. “There are physicians who do want an opportunity to be involved in a faith-based organization,” Karam said. “This is not just a business decision for us. It truly is a decision based on a mission of who we are.

“We need to be very focused on the growth of St. Vincent,” Karam said.

The changes at Sisters of Charity are a direct result of the broad reorganization at St. Vincent, St. John West Shore and Mercy Medical Center, Karam said. The three hospitals are managed jointly by Sisters of Charity and Cleveland’s University Hospitals. But by year’s end University Hospitals will oversee  St. John West Shore, though both health systems will still be part of the operation. Sisters of Charity, meanwhile, will have sole responsibility of the other two hospitals.

Both St. Vincent and St. John Westshore laid off a combined 60 workers soon after the restructuring was announced.

Also as part of the reorganization, a vice president at the health systems South Carolina hospitals, Joan K. Ross, is the new chief operating officer at St. Vincent. Ross was senior vice president of patient care services and chief nursing officer at Providence Hospital. She will begin her new job on Sept. 14 and oversee the system’s day-to-day operations.