Kansas Association of Health Care Executives

March 2019

From the Desk of the KAHCE President

Marion "Tony" Thompson, FACHE

I've just returned from our annual Congress on Administration. Several excellent sessions prompted me to reflect on the challenges we face in today's healthcare environment and what we must do to prepare ourselves. I feel the ACHE Policy Statement on Lifelong Learning and the Healthcare Executive sums it up best:

"Statement of the Issue

The need for healthcare executives to expand their professional competencies and leadership capabilities has never been greater. Changes in both the financing and delivery of care continue to occur at a rapid pace, and the expertise and skills needed to respond appropriately to the resulting challenges are not easily obtained. Only through deliberate, ongoing professional and leadership development can healthcare executives be assured they have the management and leadership skills needed to serve their patients, organizations and communities effectively.

A commitment to professional and leadership development is also critical to the career success of healthcare executives. As new patient care delivery models continue to emerge, traditional career ladders are giving way to new paths in healthcare that include all aspects of the healthcare continuum. An ongoing commitment to growth prepares healthcare executives for the resulting career opportunities.

Policy Position

The American College of Healthcare Executives believes healthcare executives have a responsibility to take charge of their professional and leadership development throughout their careers and, as part of the profession, to play an important role in supporting the professional and leadership development of others...."

In a recent interview ACHE Chairman Heather Rohan said, "As leaders in ACHE, we will continually reassess the relevance and significance of what we're providing to our members to be sure we're on target." In response to the Chair, I want you to know your KAHCE leadership is working diligently to support you and to make certain you feel our chapter is relevant and significant.

One example of your chapter leadership's efforts will occur on May 2-3 in Topeka. And a concurrent off-site session will be hosted in Garden City. (Details are included elsewhere in this newsletter.) This two-site format is new, and I believe essential, to how we plan to support members.

Our triple-aim for 2019 will be as follows:

  • Provide face-to-face continuing education offerings relevant to the challenges we face.
  • Support members who are eligible to advance to fellow status and the challenges they face in doing so.
  • Increase net membership in the chapter with a focus on lapsed memberships and those eligible for membership by addressing the challenges they face in doing so.

In closing, I am pleased to congratulate the following Kansas chapter members who recently completed all the requirements for Fellowship. To honor these and other chapter members from the United States, Canada, China, Pakistan and United Arab Emirates, the Eighty-Fifth Convocation was held prior to Congress on Sunday, March 3, 2019.

  • Patrick W. Altenhofen, FACHE, Leavenworth
  • Julie M. Galle, FACHE, Overland Park
  • Austin M. Gillard, FACHE, Clay Center
  • Steven C. Kelly, FACHE, South Hutchinson
  • Justen McKee, FACHE, Prairie Village

They are now board certified in healthcare, and may now indicate as much by placing FACHE following their name.


Message from Your ACHE Regent - Winter 2019

Patricia Sanders-Hall, FACHE

I hope you are staying warm and safe during this frigid weather that is typical for winter in the Midwest.  Our chapter has gotten off to a good start under the outstanding leadership of our new president, Tony Thompson, FACHE, CEO at Allen County Regional Hospital and both new and returning board members.  Tony has set a high bar for our chapter to achieve or exceed all goals set for us by ACHE, and we hope to engage our board, committee chairs and members in meeting this expectation!

One way to be engaged at the membership level is to attend educational events sponsored by the chapter.  Rising to the challenge of meeting the educational needs of our rural members, this chapter is committed to offering education that is relevant and practical in the rural setting.  We also have added virtual education by teleconference to our planning this year, and we are exploring several sites willing to host these teleconferences to bring Face-to-Face ACHE credit to members unable to travel to the live educational venue.  This change was a response by our ACHE governance team after feedback from many chapters like ours who have many rural facilities and members across a large geographic area.  We are excited that there is strong support for the needs of our rural leaders to continue their educational development and career growth without the cost, hardship or inconvenience of long distance travel.  We are excited to be in the early stages of planning for our annual spring educational program in Topeka, Kansas on May 2-3, 2019.  More details will be forthcoming from the chapter in the coming weeks.

Last fall was our first chapter-sponsored community service activity and it was a successful first start.  During our educational event planned in Topeka in May we will be sponsoring our second event and are planning a hands-on volunteer experience by partnering with Harvesters.  There is nothing more rewarding than giving to the less fortunate and even more so when you are personally engaged in an effort which will assist the needy.  We hope you will be among the volunteer team who will participate in this experience.  Please watch for details which will be included with registration information for the May event.

The Kansas Regent’s Advisory Council (RAC) met on February 8, 2019 to prioritize guiding recommendations for our chapter.  I am very pleased to have a diverse group of leaders on the RAC from healthcare facilities, educational institutions and private healthcare businesses offering their insights from their combined talents and experience.

As always, please let me know if I can assist you or offer guidance as your Regent.  Please contact me at KANSASREGENT.   Stay warm!

Patricia Sanders-Hall, FACHE
ACHE Regent for Kansas (2018-2021) 

Students Learn at ACHE Congress

Debbi Lehner, FACHE

ACHE Congress was wonderful this year, held in chilly Chicago on March 4–7. KAHCE sponsored a student scholarship competition that provided three winners with funding to attend this exceptional event. Two students from the University of Kansas Masters in Health Services Administration, Jackie Entzminger and Alex Lemcke, and an Undergraduate Wichita State University student in Health Management, Jeannie Ta, were the winners.  Debbi Lehner, KAHCE Scholarship Committee Chair and Senior Health Services Educator at Wichita State University was also in attendance and truly enjoyed their excitement for all of the educational sessions and the programs that were designed specifically with students in mind.  All three students expressed heartfelt gratitude to KAHCE for supporting their scholarships.

Pictured here left to right:

Jeannie Ta – WSU, Alex Lemcke – KU, Jackie Entzminger – KU, Debbi Lehner – WSU

Register for ACHE Credits - May 2-3, 2019

“KAHCE/ACHE Spring Education”

May 2-3, 2019

Ramada Inn 
420 SE 6th Ave
Topeka, KS 66607
(785) 380-8042
To register, go to www.kahce.org 
Thursday, May 2, 2019
9:00 am  Registration
9:30 am "Sustaining a Financially Vibrant Healthcare Organization" Speaker and 
Panel  (1.5 F2F credits pending)  Premier Keynote Sponsor Bukaty Companies

Today’s healthcare executives face many challenges such as workforce shortages, updating technology, making facility infrastructure improvements and providing safe high-quality patient care. Each of these initiatives make financial challenges extraordinarily complex. In addition, healthcare leaders face ever-increasing regulatory demands and diminishing financial rewards. What organizational strategies are available to healthcare executives to affect their organization’s bottom line? How can leaders use meaningful metrics to examine such areas as product lines and supply chain costs and revenues? What are the critical links that exist between financial and non-financial managers (or clinical and non-clinical managers) that can impact the financial health of departments and the organization as a whole?
12:15 pm Networking Lunch  

1:00 pm "Improving the Health Status of Your Community" Panel  (1.5 F2F credits pending)

Healthcare organizations exist to serve the communities in which they reside. Though community health has always been a focus for these organizations, new regulations require them to take an active role. The health of a community or geographic population has a critical impact on a healthcare organization’s planning, operations, financial sustainability, outcomes and success. Due to the implementation of the key components of the healthcare reform by legislation, it will be even more important that provider organizations are both aware of and responsive to the health status and disease states that are most prevalent in their communities. Not only is a population-based focus the right thing to do, but it may prove to be the financially astute course of action.
2:45 pm "Information Technology" Speaker   Premier Keynote Sponsor Computer Task Group
4:15 pm Community Service and Networking Reception  hosted by Networking Sponsor 

Friday, May 3, 2019
8:00 am  Registration
8:30 am "Leading a Successful Multi-generational Organization" Panel  (1.5 F2F credits pending)

In today’s complex healthcare environment, a multi-generational workforce presents unfamiliar terrain for healthcare leaders. As a result, conflicts may develop in healthcare organizations due to the generational differences in core values and work-related issues. Other factors include economic and political differences, size of each generation’s population, and the transition of younger generations to leadership roles and social influences of the generational periods. This combination of factors results in further conflict among healthcare employees. Healthcare executives must take proactive steps to create cohesion across generational segments.
10:15 am "Strategic Marketing:  Winning the Battle for Markets and Share" Panel  
(1.5 F2F credits pending) 
In today's competitive healthcare marketplace, a strategy for offering your products and services in a way that will outdistance your competitors is critical. However, in concert with defining the marketing strategy, you must also have a well defined methodology for implementation that contains a relevant and consistent message. Further, it is of little value to have a strategy and a message without the resources or the expertise to implement them. In the process of creating a marketing strategy, you must consider many factors including, but not limited to, the Four P’s of Marketing: Product, Place, Price and Promotion. A well-conceived marketing plan that is in concert with your strategic plan and the time and resources to put it in motion are the necessary elements to increase market share and support financial success. Of those many factors, some are more important than others. Because each strategy must address some unique considerations, it is not reasonable to identify 'every' important factor at a generic level. However, many are common to all marketing strategies. 
11:45 am Adjournment
Our thanks to our Event Sponsors, KHSC, Sunflower Health Plan, and Sizewise

Seeking Nominations for New Award

Patricia Sanders-Hall, FACHE

Nominations for 2019 ACHE Regent Awards will open in April and close July 10, 2019. Please think about worthy candidates for this prestigious honor so you can nominate them when the nomination window opens.

New this year is the biennial Senior Rural Healthcare Leader Award which will honor a rural executive who has provided long-term service excellence. 

The second Regent’s Award is for an Early Careerist and is intended for leaders under 40 years old with noteworthy service in KAHCE as well as career and educational advancement.

Full requirements will be published in April.

Advancing in ACHE

Patrick Altenhofen, FACHE

I want to take the time in this first article to introduce myself. My name is Patrick Altenhofen, and I am the new Chair of the KAHCE Advancement Committee. The past two years for me has been a journey of professional growth, and I do not mean what most think when they hear “professional growth.” What I mean is understanding the need to continue to learn and challenge one’s self, outside of the standard work environment through literature, networking, and mentoring. From the input of my mentors and desire to test what I have learned, I took the Board of Governors exam. As of January 2018, I am now very proud to showcase the designation FACHE after my name. Now that I have taken and completed the journey to achieve the FACHE designation, I now strive to help others continue their journey of learning and advancement.

Over the past three months as the KAHCE Advancement Chair, I have had the opportunity to connect with some amazing folks in KAHCE. What has been even more amazing is the response I received when I sent an email out to KAHCE members who are on the cusp of taking the Board of Governors exam, and the next step toward FACHE – striving to continue learning and advancing, professionally and personally. Individuals I received responses from were of varying ages, levels in their career, and overall experience. The one thing in common is the fact that they recognized FACHE as the gold standard of health care executives.

As many of you consider your next steps of learning and advancement, I want to make sure everyone is aware that ACHE is currently allowing members to complete their FACHE application by June 30, 2019, along with the $250 application fee and all supporting documents.  In turn, ACHE will waive the $200 Board of Governors exam fee. This waiver will be valid for six months after the application is approved.

If you or someone you know is interested in learning more about the benefits of FACHE, please reach out to me at paltenhofen@saintlukeskc.org.  

Please also follow this link to get a snapshot of the benefits to obtaining your FACHE. 

Patrick Altenhofen, FACHE
Vice President, Operations
Saint Luke's Cushing Hospital
711 Marshall St
Leavenworth, KS 66048
Phone 913.684.1108 (ext. 51108)

Membership Report

Richard W. “Wes” Hoyt, FACHE

 One new Fellow and 20 New Members and 4 Re-certs!

Happy Spring!  It seems like this winter just wanted to hang on for a little while longer.  

Flash! Flash! Flash!...Pay your dues.  The deadline for paying your dues for this year is April 1st.  Lack of payment by this date will result in dis-enrollment from ACHE.  Please check your status and pay your dues if you are still pending.  

We also want to welcome Justin Peters to the Membership Committee.  Justin has volunteered to help us as a representative of the VA.  Welcome Justin...great to have you on the committee. 

Fellow!  Fellow!  Fellow!  It is a great beginning to the year as we already have a new Fellow to recognize...Austin Gillard.  Congrats Austin!  In addition to our newest Fellow, we have 20 new Members or Member Renewals and 4 Fellows re-certify.  Membership in ACHE is a demonstration of commitment to our profession and professional growth.  Regardless the stage we find ourselves in our career, we all have something to offer and share with others.


New Members (20)

January (5)

City State
Peter Berger Overland Park KS
John G. Darrah, MBA Wichita KS
Scott Dikeman Prairie Village KS
Mark Madden Overland Park KS
Brian O'Neal Shawnee KS
February (3)

City State
Wade L. Babcock, PA-C Great Bend KS
Carol Kemper, PhD, RN Prairie Village KS
Janette Kirkpatrick, MBA, BSN, RN Lawrence KS
March (12)

City State
Lt Col Carlton D. Abner Lenexa KS
Jason Butler Overland Park KS
Jeff S. Dunn, DO, MBA Overland Park KS
Beth Heslowitz Overland Park KS
Neesha N. Hitchcock Overland Park KS
Heather D. Hyler Neodesha KS
Michelle L. Kingsford Wichita KS
Brett Knapp Overland Park KS
Carman Meade Olathe KS
David S. Scott Overland Park KS
Nicole Vande Garde, BS Leawood KS
Fellows (1)

January (1)

City State
Austin M. Gillard, FACHE Clay Center KS
Recertified Fellows (4)

February (3)

City State
MAJ Erica Chabalko, FACHE Fort Leavenworth KS
Russell W. Johnson, FACHE Lawrence KS
Mark A. Miller, FACHE Abilene KS
March (1)

City State
Brock A. Slabach, FACHE Leawood KS

 2018 was a great year and we know 2019 will be even better.  Our goal is to grow our membership through one-on-one interaction and sharing the value of KAHCE with other healthcare leaders and peers.  We have many professionals in our organizations and other healthcare related businesses that are not aware of ACHE and do not understand the value it brings to our profession. If you are a Fellow, I strongly encourage you to add your Fellow designation (FACHE) to your business cards and correspondence.  It is a great way to generate in the designation and start a conversation about ACHE and KAHCE.

We've worked on a new Value Proposition statement for our chapter and want to share it with you:

"KAHCE is an independent chapter of ACHE committed to the professional development and advancement of healthcare professionals throughout Kansas in frontier, rural and urban markets.  Anchored in fundamental beliefs of inclusion, integrity and diversity, KAHCE leverages and employs a portfolio of networking, continuing education, career development, mentoring and teaching opportunities to promote the healthcare leadership profession in Kansas."

As current members, it is our challenge to introduce and talk with our teammates and peers about "WHY" membership in ACHE is good for them and for our profession.  A few of the key benefits to membership are education, fellowship, and community service. Let's work together to have that conversation with at least one to two people this year and see how much our chapter can grow and thrive.  From the membership committee, we are working on new engagement strategies and opportunities to introduce potential members to KAHCE.  This year, we plan to tackle the student to member process, as well as how to improve the on boarding of new members into our chapter.  We are a strong chapter with much to offer and share and will continue to promote our value.  

To be eligible for member status, a candidate must have two things:

    1. A minimum of a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution

    2. An interest in or commitment to the profession of healthcare management

Candidates can apply online at https://www.ache.org/join. For the first two years of membership, new member dues are drastically reduced at $160.  

Richard W. "Wes" Hoyt, FACHE

Chief Operating Officer, Hutchinson Regional Healthcare System

Three Steps for Engaging Healthcare Providers in Organizational Change

As healthcare organizations feel pressure to cut costs, reduce medical errors and adopt standardized processes and innovations, providers must give up some established and comfortable ways of working. Many view changes as clashing with patient care values. The following are three key ways managers can engage providers and connect innovation efforts to core motivations, passions and values.

Learn why staff think changes do not align with the existing culture and mission. 
One medical practice CEO listened as managers explained employees’ concerns regarding quality care versus financial pressures, and the replacement of familiar processes and techniques. The CEO first recommended that the managers listen to doctors and staff to understand the perceived misalignment between the changes and organizational values of the practice. The CEO then took steps, to reframe and strengthen the connection between innovations and the practice's core values to eliminate the perception of misalignment.

Use data to engage and explain how to address the problem. 
Data and metrics can create an awareness of problems, a means to explore them, and a goal post to measure progress. One hospital leader ordered the collection of observational data regarding staff hand hygiene to change existing norms and routines and drive more hand washing. The collated data became an agenda item during the weekly staff dialogue. This not only kept the problem in the forefront, but also engaged employees in diagnosing the barriers and factors outside their control that made change difficult to implement. This combination of data, staff engagement and appealing to the mission of good patient care increased the handwashing rate from 45 percent to 82 percent in one year.
Pay attention to the behaviors you reward and tolerate. 
As part of the same hand-washing initiative, the hospital system introduced a campaign empowering staff members, including clinicians, to remind each other—on the spot and regardless of level or status—to wash their hands. The change would not stick if it were exempt from this feedback. An administrator reminded physicians reacting negatively to feedback that the mandate was everyone’s responsibility for patient health. During weekly huddle meetings, the CMO distributed gift cards as positive reinforcement to those who had reminded others of hand washing. 
The status quo persists when unwanted behaviors at any level of the organization are tolerated. When leadership understands that ignoring one act of poor behavior can decimate the adoption of innovation, they may be more willing to hold difficult conversations with the highest-status employees in their organizations.
Seeking to understand staff perspectives, using data and holding all employees accountable will help providers understand how change can support, rather than contradict, the values they hold dear.
—Adapted from “3 Steps for Engaging Health Care Providers in Organizational Change,” by Joan F. Brett and Margaret M. Luciano, Harvard Business Review, Oct. 18, 2018.