One of Jeff Korsmo's priorities as Via Christi Health's new president and CEO will be to partner with patients, residents and business owners to create better health care for Wichita and Kansas.
"I heard great things about this community as I was preparing to come here and, in my few days here, I've been thrilled to see the pride that exists among the people who live here in Wichita,'' said Korsmo, who began his work at Via Christi in September.
"We want to be partners with you in a variety of ways so that we together can deliver better health care and better health to the people of Wichita and of this region," said Korsmo, who joined Via Christi after a 28-year career with the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., including seven years as its chief administrative officer.
"I'm often asked what are the challenges and opportunities I see in this new role. One of the things that we need to do here at Via Christi is to deliver higher value health care," he said. "That means better quality, better outcomes, better safety, better service and lower cost."
Korsmo said it is unclear what the impact of national health care reform will be on Via Christi and the communities it serves.
"None of us knows the answer to that for sure," he said. "It's possible that many of the elements of the health care reform that was passed ... won't actually be implemented completely or maybe not implemented at all. But we've come together as an organization here at Via Christi to deliver higher-value care, care that is truly centered on the patient, the resident and the community. We want to involve you and partner with you in delivering higher value care. So, regardless of what happens with national health care reform, our commitment is to deliver better quality, better safety, better service at a lower cost. That's good for all of us. It's good for us as citizens. It's good for our organization at Via Christi. It's good for the businesses of this community. And it's good for our country."
Korsmo grew up in Rochester and originally thought he might pursue a career as a doctor. He began college as a pre-med major but then switched his studies to economics. While he was finishing his master's degree, he said he was recruited to join a new administrative fellowship program at the Mayo Clinic, in his hometown, which launched his career as a health care administrator.
"It's an exciting, dynamic, complex, interesting field whose ultimate purpose is to care for people,'' he said. "That fits well with my own values and personality."
Jeff Korsmo Career Highlights
28 years as administrator at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN., and Jacksonville, Fl.
Seven years as chief administrative officer for Mayo Clinic in Rochester
Led efforts to improve the quality of care and to reduce administrative expenses