With the holiday season upon us and the year drawing to a close, it’s a good time to reflect on 2017 and think about what lies ahead for TeamHealth in the new year.
2017 was a year of uniquely heroic work from our clinical and non-clinical teams where we performed incredibly and admirably in the face of several national emergencies.
First, our West Group clinicians made national news with their response to Hurricane Harvey in South Texas. As Harvey made landfall, our teams were prepared to support our patients and client facilities throughout the state, but our most notable focus was supporting the 10 hospitals and four freestanding facilities we serve in Houston, Texas, which were severely impacted by significant flooding that persisted for several days. Through our emergency response efforts, TeamHealth supported our colleagues in the Houston area by airlifting relief clinicians from throughout the country into Houston. Clinicians were transported into the areas of greatest need by airplane, helicopter and boats while flooded streets made surface travel impossible.
Only one week later, our Southeast Group operations prepared for Hurricane Irma, where we had 85 emergency departments, 50 anesthesia sites, nine ambulatory care sites and more than 150 acute and post-acute locations in the direct path of the storm. Similar to Houston, the response from our regional leadership, our emergency command center and the various functional areas in our national support center that stepped up to redistribute workloads to markets outside of the affected areas was remarkable—especially in light of personal property losses that a large number of our associates suffered.
In September, Hurricane Maria caused catastrophic damage across Puerto Rico and triggered a major humanitarian crisis. In the weeks following the storm, FEP of TeamHealth partnered with Florida Hospital to send two physician teams to the devastated country to offer medical relief, supplies and support. To date, these teams have provided live-saving services for 28 towns throughout Puerto Rico.
Most recently, TeamHealth clinicians and the seven hospitals we serve in in Las Vegas, Nevada, were critical in the response to the mass shooting on October 1. The magnitude of what happened in Las Vegas is unprecedented, and it really put our teams to the test. That night, TeamHealth clinicians saw 300 patients show up at hospitals in a period of less than 60 minutes—with nearly 200 at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center alone. Within less than one hour, the team called in more than 30 incremental clinicians to respond and by any measure saved numerous lives as a direct result of their response. Everyone—Sunrise Health System, Dignity Health System, TeamHealth clinicians and leaders—all collaborated and worked together in remarkable ways to save lives under incomprehensible circumstances.
Our team’s response to these challenging situations and national emergencies make us all proud to be a part of TeamHealth.
Despite a year filled with national disasters, we advanced our strategic priorities as a company, building our best-in-class clinical quality and patient safety agenda; we worked harder to ensure that TeamHealth is the first choice for physicians and clinicians when they decide where they want to practice; we enhanced our solid relationships with client partners and collaborated on clinical quality, patient safety and operations excellence; we improved our analytical discipline and decision making with comprehensive, evidence-based analytics; and, importantly, we continued to grow through strategic mergers and acquisitions and organic growth.
As we look ahead to 2018, we will continue to succeed amid the external challenges facing the healthcare industry. As our team proved in the face of extraordinary challenges in 2017, together we will differentiate TeamHealth and excel in the toughest of circumstances.
We hope your holiday season is filled with much joy. Thank you for your passion, particularly during the holiday season when you make so many sacrifices to take care of families who depend on us. We hope each of you can spend time with loved ones and recharge for the New Year. We do meaningful work at TeamHealth, and we are more proud than ever to be a part of the team!
Best Holiday Wishes,
Leif Murphy and Mike Wiechart