Thursday, Jun 21, 2018
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Local exec will become Catholic Health chief


Steven Mickus, Mercy's president and chief executive, will be assuming duties as chief operating officer of Catholic Healthcare Partners, Mercy's parent company in Cincinnati.

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After 16 years of increasingly taking on higher responsibilities, local hospital executive Steven Mickus will no longer call Toledo home.

Mr. Mickus, 58, is shedding dual roles on regional and corporate levels for Catholic Health Partners, the Cincinnati-based parent of Mercy and Ohio's largest health-care system. He will oversee operations of Catholic Health's 31 hospitals and 14 nursing homes in three states as president of health-care operations and chief operating officer out of Cincinnati. He will no longer be chief executive of Catholic Health's northern division.

Among Mr. Mickus' tasks will be expanding into more Catholic Health hospitals the electronic care-coordination system started about three years ago at Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center to streamline patient care. St. Vincent has cut patients' average length of stay while improving quality and freeing up bed space, and patients and families are informed of their coordinated treatment plan from the start of admissions.

Mr. Mickus said the care-coordination idea cropped up out of a routine visit he made to St. Vincent's emergency department a few years ago, when he three saw Life Flight patients quickly tested and treated. Coordinating tests and treatments should be done throughout a hospital so patients can safely be discharged more quickly, he said at the time.

"It just flowed," Mr. Mickus recalled of his observations. "If we can do that for three trauma patients, why can't we do it for 300?"

Other Catholic Health partners, including St. Rita's Medical Center in Lima, Ohio, have instituted the care-coordination system, which also is in beginning stages at Mercy St. Charles Hospital and Mercy St. Anne Hospital. Other health-care systems have visited St. Vincent or shown interest in the system that improves efficiency.

Catholic Health announced two other executive changes that also will take effect July 1.

John Starcher, Catholic Health chief executive for eastern and southern divisions, will assume Mr. Mickus' role as chief executive for the northern division, which includes Mercy and facilities in Lorain and Lima. Andrea Price, Mercy's president and chief executive, will report to Mr. Starcher, one of the executives reporting to Mr. Mickus, according to Catholic Health and Mercy.

Catholic Health northern division executive Samantha Platzke is being promoted to a position with the parent company, although she will remain in Toledo and be available to Ms. Price. Ms. Platzke will be Catholic Health's senior vice president of operations and systems effectiveness after last serving as the northern division's senior vice-president, chief financial officer, and chief transformation officer.

Mr. Mickus assumed the position of chief operating officer for Catholic Health last year. Besides being chief executive of Catholic Health's northern division, Mr. Mickus had been president and chief executive for Mercy until Ms. Price assumed those duties in August.

He and his wife, Gwenyth, plan to relocate to Cincinnati from Sylvania in fall or spring, although Mr. Mickus still will be at Mercy a couple of days a month. Mr. Mickus first came to Toledo in 1995 as St. Vincent's executive vice president and chief operating officer.

"We're going to miss the community and many, many fine friends," said Mr. Mickus, a father of three who has been involved in many civic activities.

In late 2008, Catholic Health announced Mr. Mickus would be promoted to replace A. David Jimenez as chief operating officer. Mr. Jimenez retired last year, allowing Mr. Mickus time to transition into his corporate role.

Contact Julie M. McKinnon at: or 419-724-6087.

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