A Seamless Transition at a Southern Health System


Any time uncertainty looms in a workplace, it’s common for a sense of dread to surface. Hospitals are no exception. “What ifs” and speculation make the rounds almost as often as physicians do. However, if a facility has a strong strategic partner that focuses on them, the anxiety that inevitably comes with change evaporates quickly and transition is seamless and effective. Such was the case with this multi-hospital healthcare organization that provides complex surgical services to its community.

The System wanted a partner for anesthesia service, not merely a provider group. The relationship with the existing providers was good, but they needed more responsiveness. The System’s Leadership started scouting options. It came down to three or four companies, and Premier Anesthesia stood out. “We needed someone with history and experience that could ensure a smooth transition,” a system representative said. “We were looking for someone that had experience managing a multi-hospital system. We have surgeons who go from hospital to hospital, and we needed anesthesiologists who would do the same thing.”

Premier’s references were “glowing.” Its presentation was impressive. A partnership was started. But what helped diminish anxiety and the fear of the unknown? For that, we need to look back to before the contract was signed.

At first, like in other workplaces, people began to wonder whether they should start looking for positions elsewhere. But the system representative said, “A lot of their fears were alleviated when they started talking to Premier about what the plan was.” Premier deployed a team to meet with and assess the anesthesia providers who were in place. That made a difference. “We knew that we were going to sign the contract, but it wasn’t official. Premier came into town with their recruiting and HR people and arranged a dinner to meet the providers.”

Premier Anesthesia has seen repeatedly that retaining key providers makes transitions go much more easily. Many times, facility leaders know they have some good people and want to work with Premier to build the strongest team possible with those core providers. “We feel like we had quality anesthesia providers,” the representative said. “That includes all the anesthesiologists and CRNAs. We weren’t looking to run people off, but at the same time we wanted a company that would work with the existing providers and do the best they could.” Forty days before the contract’s startup, Premie