Transforming a hospital in crisis


Share this story:

By Jeff Carlton

Michael Williams

 

When Dr. Michael Williams took charge as CEO of Hill Country Memorial in 2008, the rural hospital in Fredericksburg faced systemic problems.

It was losing money every year. Patient satisfaction was low. Employee morale had plummeted. And community members routinely were seeking better care in Austin, San Antonio and elsewhere.

But under the innovative leadership of Dr. Williams, now president of UNT Health Science Center, Hill Country Memorial became a hospital transformed, ranking among the nation’s best for quality and safety. It received a presidential honor for health care excellence through innovation and leadership.

PBS News Hour declared the success at Hill Country Memorial “a model for other rural hospitals” and interviewed Dr. Williams about his leadership in a story that aired last week.

Among his innovations was a willingness to look outside of health care for answers. He hired a Toyota engineer to help implement the car manufacturer’s management philosophies, a Southwest Airlines consultant to focus on hospital culture and a Ritz Carlton executive to remake customer service.

Dr. Williams’ experience as a physician leader and business executive informs his role as president of UNTHSC. He’s called for transformational change that will turn the Health Science Center into a national leader in education, research and health care innovation.

By 2020, he wants the university positioned as the education and research partner for Tarrant County hospitals and health care systems, a new MD school with TCU up and running and the establishment of a Patient Safety Institute that will leading the way in reducing medical errors.

“My vision is that we will be an extraordinary team committed to excellence and unafraid to challenge conventional wisdom,” Dr. Williams said.

Watch the PBS News Hour story

 

Share this story:

Zoonotic Disease Fair to cover important topics for Texas

By Sally Crocker   UNTHSC students, faculty and staff are invited to the 2nd Annual Zoonotic Disease Fair from noon to 3 p.m. on Nov. 21 to learn about some of the common diseases found in Texas that can be passed from animals to humans. “It pays to be aware,” said public health st...Read more

Nov 16, 2017

A champion of the underdog

By Alex Branch   Amy Raines Milenkov, MPH, DrPH, has always cared about the underdog. She cared about the low-income women and children afflicted with HIV or AIDS who she helped as a social worker in the 1990s, when life-saving drug cocktails were only emerging. She cared for the vu...Read more

Nov 13, 2017

Using teamwork to train better healthcare leaders

By Jan Jarvis Catherine Daniel, a first-year student in the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine, clicked on the keys of her laptop, searching for data about a program to address infant mortality in Tarrant County. “There needs to be a better way of identifying high risk people,” she ...Read more

Nov 13, 2017

Palladino Family

Student vets proud to see UNTHSC designated a Purple Heart University

By Alex Branch Gary and Aundrea Palladino met while serving in the U.S. Air Force as pharmacy technicians at Joint Base Andrews in Washington, D.C. At the three pharmacies on base, Gary and Aundrea filled prescriptions and managed inventory, compounded IV and topical medication orders, and...Read more

Nov 9, 2017