Cummings Announces Plans to Retire in 2017

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

After a long and rewarding career in health care, Bruce D. Cummings, who has been president and chief executive officer of L+M Healthcare for the past 11 years, today announced his plans to retire in 2017. 

“Simply stated, this is the best time for me, my family and the organization,” Cummings said. “It was of paramount importance for me to ensure our affiliation with Yale New Haven Health would not only be approved, but prosper. 

“With the approval behind us and opportunities for growth ahead of us,” continued Cummings, “this was just the right time. I’ve reached normal retirement age, my children are grown and I’m a grandfather. It’s important for me to begin to focus on other things.” 

A national search for a successor is underway and Cummings, who also serves as executive vice president with Yale New Haven Health, will continue to lead L+M Healthcare until a new president has been selected, according to Marna P. Borgstrom, president and chief executive officer of Yale New Haven Health.

“As always, Bruce has been thoughtful about this decision,” said Borgstrom. “His foremost concern over the past 11 years has been to support the continued growth and success of L+M Healthcare. He has accomplished that in so many ways, including first the decision to acquire Westerly Hospital and then, most recently, leading the process of aligning L+M Healthcare into Yale New Haven Health.

“Bruce’s leadership and dedication have been evident during his entire tenure at L+M,” continued Borgstrom. “We are grateful for his unrelenting focus on making health care better and more accessible in Connecticut and Rhode Island.”

L+M Healthcare, a member of Yale New Haven Health, includes Lawrence + Memorial Hospital, Westerly Hospital, L+M Medical Group and the Visiting Nurse Association of Southeastern Connecticut.

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Selected Accomplishments from the Tenure of Bruce D. Cummings

Initiated formal corporate affiliation with Yale New Haven Health starting in January 2015. Board endorsement of a definitive affiliation agreement obtained in June 2015. Final regulatory approval secured by Connecticut and Rhode Island regulators on September 8, 2016. A centerpiece of the affiliation agreement is a commitment to further enhance access to locally available primary care and specialty services.

Founded the L+M Medical Group, a non-profit hospital-affiliated medical foundation, that today employs 130 providers and 250 support personnel throughout southeastern Connecticut, and western Rhode Island in 12 offices. A recent hallmark has been the creation of walk-in capability at four primary care offices as well as same-day appointments.

Successfully acquired Westerly Hospital from receivership on June 1, 2013.

Initiated the design and development of a new comprehensive 50,000 square foot cancer center with three significant clinical affiliations: Dana-Farber (medical oncology), Yale School of Medicine (radiation oncology), Women and Infants Hospital (gyn oncology). As of January 2016, medical oncology affiliation now Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale New Haven. 

Created a distinct pediatric emergency medicine service staffed by board-certified pediatric emergency medicine specialists – unique among community hospitals in Connecticut.

Established a pediatric hospitalist service with Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital that returned inpatient pediatric capability to L+M, allowing area children to receive routine acute care close to home at a time when most community hospitals have abandoned inpatient pediatrics altogether.

Introduced emergency angioplasty (PCI) and, later, elective angioplasty in conjunction with Yale New Haven Hospital and the Yale School of Medicine. L+M was and remains the only hospital in eastern Connecticut or western Rhode Island with emergency PCI capability. 

Received the John D. Thompson Award and the Community Service Award in same year by Connecticut Hospital Association (the former for excellence in reducing hospital-acquired pressure ulcers; the latter for work with homeless population). Received the Community Service Award again in June 2016 for L+M Hospital and the VNASC’s commitment to working with the Homeless Hospitality Center.

Established a culture of ‘High Reliability’ at L+M and Westerly Hospitals, resulting in a 95 percent reduction in serious safety events in three years.

Introduced Relationship Based Care to L+M Hospital in fall 2015, resulting in significant and sustained improvements in patient and employee satisfaction.

Lawrence + Memorial Hospital, a member of Yale New Haven Health, is a non-profit, 280-bed general and acute care hospital providing patient care to medical, surgical, pediatric, psychiatric and obstetrical patients in southeastern Connecticut and southern Rhode Island since 1912. Lawrence + Memorial offers cardiac acute, step-down and rehabilitation programs and is the only eastern Connecticut hospital that performs emergency and elective angioplasty. www.lmhospital.org

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