Bert Beard, CEO of Maria Parham Health, was on Thursday’s edition of WIZS’ Town Talk program to discuss his role at the hospital and to provide updates on recent expansions at both the Henderson and Louisburg locations.
Maria Parham CEO
“My job, most simply put, is to take care of the people who take care of our patients,” said Beard. In other words, Beard listens to and addresses the needs and concerns of Maria Parham employees, a dedicated group he refers to as the frontline of the organization.
To better understand these needs, Beard calls for a “morning huddle” involving the hospital leadership team each weekday morning at 9 a.m. “We kick off the meeting with three positive things going on in the hospital or with team members, then we talk about things happening in the hospital – safety issues, things we need to anticipate throughout the day and things that we need to disseminate to our caregivers.”
With a five-county coverage area from the Virginia border to south of Louisburg, Beard said operating a hospital, in many ways, is akin to running a town with its own unique advantages and challenges.
“A hospital is like a small city in terms of people coming and going every day,” Beard explained. “It’s a high-stress environment. People are coming here with health issues; they’re scared and their family members are scared. It is our job to not only take care of the patient with the diagnosis but also take care of families and help put them at ease.”
MPH Growth and Expansion
One of the main areas of focus for Beard, and many of the Maria Parham staff, over the past year has been getting the Maria Parham Franklin facility in Louisburg up and running.
Since its grand opening in October 2018, the Franklin facility has seen more emergency room patients than originally projected and expanded outpatient services with the addition of a multispecialty clinic and medical office building located next to the hospital.
Beard also reported that ground was recently broken on the construction of a 20-bed psychiatric unit to open in early 2020.
At the main Maria Parham facility in Henderson, hospital leaders are currently submitting a proposal to build a new catheterization laboratory to further expand the cardiovascular services offered through the hospital’s partnership with Duke LifePoint Healthcare.
A regional human resource center has also been added across the street that will serve all of LifePoint and add jobs to the community, according to Beard.
Maria Parham’s cancer treatment program is yet another bragging point for the hospital. “Our cancer program here has been a feather in our cap for nearly 20 years,” said Beard. “We have Duke providers, and we use Duke protocols and Duke research. Anything you can get done in Durham or Raleigh, you can get done here – radiation oncology and medical oncology.”
When looking at how much Maria Parham has to offer, including the convenience of quality care close to home, Beard said the community is fortunate to have access to “excellent services, especially general surgery and cardiology – the core to a community hospital.”
From his unique perspective as CEO, Beard is able to see the way all of the parts and pieces come together to make up the bigger picture. “I love what I do. There isn’t a single job in this hospital that isn’t critically important.”
To hear the Town Talk interview with Bert Beard in its entirety, click here.