Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Town Hall Meetings and GBMC’s Bright Future in an Evolving Healthcare Marketplace

Yesterday, I did the first in a series of Town Hall Meetings. These meetings are one of our tactics for narrowing the distance between the “front office” and the “front line.” It is very important that all of the members of the GBMC family know what is happening in the national and local healthcare environment and how this affects the GBMC HealthCare System. 

We are well into our transformation as a health system and we are better prepared for the changes to come than most hospital companies, but there are challenges out there and we need wide open conversations to give us the best shot at effectively dealing with these challenges. 

Real changes described in the newspaper like layoffs at other organizations or rumored changes heard about in hallway conversations make our people nervous and generate questions about job security, salary and wages, and the future of our own healthcare system, among others.

The Town Hall Meetings are an opportunity for me to keep people focused on our vision and the work of transforming ourselves into a high performing system through the eyes of the patients we serve. If we do this work, our company will continue to thrive. I will share our recent accomplishments and the reasons why hospitals are at risk and why our strategy to move to a system of care is now paying off. 

Holding the town hall meetings also provides our staff with the opportunity to ask questions, raise concerns and let us know what they are thinking.  

Some of the important topics we will be covering over the next month include:
- The GBMC healthcare system’s progress toward our vision
- Financial challenges to hospitals in Maryland and nationwide
- Positive changes to GBMC’s benefits and wellness initiatives
- Employee wages and bonuses – an update on our FY’13 incentive plan and merit pay for FY’14

To ensure that every employee has an opportunity to attend a town hall meeting, they will be held in large and small group settings on the GBMC campus as well as at satellite locations including Hunt Valley, Owings Mills and the South Chapman building. The detailed schedule is available on the GBMC InfoWeb. 

As always, our town hall meetings are a place to learn more about your role in assuring the success of the GBMC HealthCare System and your opportunity to have your opinion heard. I encourage all employees to attend at least one of the 14 scheduled meetings that run from July 8 through July 26. 


  1. I attended the meeting and was pleased to hear how well GBMC is positioned in the market as it relates to stability and growth. Thank you to you and your team for all you do behind the scenes to get us there - I really feel that my job is secure! I do want to comment on a question (request) that was submitted and read, regarding the stop sign near the gatehouse. I know that request has been made for at least two, maybe three, years about putting up a sign advising that oncoming traffic does not stop. I've been in several near-misses, and I heard several other people in the audience make similar comments about how dangerous that intersection is. Why has this simple idea not been accomplished? I have to say, it's the little things like this that make us feel no one is listening - or responding. Thank you.

    1. Thanks, Anonymous. We are ordering a sign that says "Beware of Oncoming Traffic" to address this concern. Thanks for your patience.


  2. I saw that it's there. Thank you very much!

  3. Mr.Chessare

    I was shocked to read in Sunday August 18,2013 that you received a 246,663 increase in your salary for the fiscal year 2012. I was under the assumption that the hospital was in a deficit therefore every employee including "You" was taking a decrease in salary. However,our patients and families who enter GBMC still recieve high quality care. I have been an employee at GBMC for over ten years and have not received a pay increase over three years. Can you explain the rationale behind this.

    Please, advise....

    1. Dear Anonymous:

      We are delighted that while other hospital companies have done layoffs this summer that we have been able to keep our workforce. Since I joined GBMC as President and CEO in 2010, GBMC has given raises every year except in Fiscal 13 (last year), so I am not sure why you did not get a raise for 3 years. If you had been on a performance improvement plan that may have been true for you. After our financial statements are audited we will probably be paying a modest bonus this fall, and as I announced during the Town Hall meetings, we will be giving a merit based raise this fall as well.
      In fiscal 13, my salary was reduced by 5%. You do not see this reduction in the Baltimore Sun article because they report total compensation that includes benefits and retirement income, not just base salary and their data were based on a calendar fiscal year and ours is July 1 to June 30. My total compensation is determined by the Compensation Committee of the GBMC HealthCare System Board of Directors. If you have further questions, you may want to direct them to the Committee Chair.

      Dr. John B. Chessare


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