CEO Update – March 15th


The obvious highlight of this week was last night’s donor appreciation/ open house to celebrate the completion of the construction project. It turned out to be an excellent night with great attendance and gave us the opportunity to thank the people who were instrumental in bringing this to a successful completion.

This project places Southwest Health System in a position to continue to provide very high quality care in state-of-the-art facilities unsurpassed by any provider in the area. We now have the newest, nicest inpatient facility in the service area allowing for a very private, comfortable experience for our patients and families to go along with the excellent staff that provide that care. Our Medical Office Building allowed us to consolidate services for much improved coordination of services between primary care, specialists and our outpatient hospital services. And can you imagine the effect this winter would have had on our ambulance service had they had to continue to house our ambulances outside all the time.

The turnout for the event last night demonstrated just how important this organization is to the community. It took a considerable effort to unify the community to support this project but ultimately the support was overwhelming as evidenced by the multiple parties that played a part in providing the funding for the construction. Last night we had the opportunity to thank the contributors that included $20,000 raised through employee contributions, approximately $380,000 raised through the foundation and lets not forget the Tax Levy that was passed by the local tax payors. In addition, the support from all the local banks to form a syndicate of 1st Southwest Bank, FNB Durango, The Dolores State Bank, FNB of Cortez, Four Corners Community Bank and led by Vectra Bank/ZionsBankCorp to provide the Bond financing is another testament to the belief that this organization is critical to the community.

But perhaps the biggest positive last night was the mood of the people in attendance. It truly was a celebration and certainly signified just how far this organization had come in the last year to overcome our challenges and return Southwest Health into the leading provider of healthcare services in the four corners area. The delay of the event until last night was a deliberate choice. We made the decision last fall to make sure that when we did hold the event that it would be received an positive manner. The progress we have demonstrated the last several months gave us confidence that this was the time to move forward. Everyone at SHS can be proud of this accomplishment as it was truly the efforts of everyone at SHS that has moved us along to this point.

I would also like to thank everyone that played a role in making this event very successful. Bridgett Jabour and Chris Alvarez went above and beyond and did an excellent job of planning and organizing the event and coordinating the resources that were needed to pull this together. Also I would also like to thank all the people who volunteered to assist Bridgett and Chris in getting everything ready last night. The setting was beautiful and it was obvious everyone really enjoyed the event. I’d also like to thank Rob Dobry (member of SWMH Foundation and MCHD Board) who was instrumental in helping Chris and Bridgett coordinate the event as well as getting the donor wall completed with funds from SWMH Foundation. We also truly appreciate the Cortez Chamber of Commerce’s sponsorship of this event and thank them for their contribution to a very successful outcome. As they always do, our Food and Nutrition staff did a fabulous job with the food which again received great reviews from everyone in attendance. Thanks to all you for your outstanding efforts.


We continue on track with our Just Culture training in April and look forward to getting that program rolled out.

David Marx published a new article recently that I am attaching for your reading. The article is about an incident at Vanderbilt University and the subsequent Homicide Charge against the nurse involved in the incident. David approaches the article from a perspective of a Just Culture and how that could effect this event. I will discuss the article in more detail next week but wanted to give you the opportunity to read it beforehand.