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CEO and president named for new Behavioral Health Hospital

Posted on Jan. 15, 2018 ( comments)

The Alliance for South Sound Health announced today that Maureen Womack has been hired as chief executive officer and president of the Behavioral Health Hospital now under construction in Tacoma. The Alliance is a joint entity forged between the region’s two largest nonprofit health systems, CHI Franciscan Health and MultiCare Health System, to alleviate the critical shortage of behavioral health inpatient care in Pierce County. Together they will open and operate a dedicated, 120-bed adult Behavioral Health Hospital at 19th Street and South Union Avenue. Womack will join the Alliance and begin her new role on Jan. 15. The Alliance anticipates the hospital will open for patient care in early January 2019.

Womack brings 20-plus years of executive leadership in the field of behavioral health. She relocates from Arizona, where she served as CEO and oversaw the startup of psychiatric hospital Cornerstone Behavioral Health-El Dorado in Tucson. Her experience includes serving as executive director of Johnson County Mental Health Center in Johnson County, Kansas; Merit Health River Region in Vicksburg, Mississippi (interim), managing a 104-bed psychiatric hospital; and the Norfolk Community Services Board in Norfolk, Virginia with oversight of the community’s full continuum of services for mental health, substance use disorders and developmental disabilities. Womack also served a decade as president and CEO of Davis Behavioral Health Inc., a nonprofit community mental health and substance abuse center in Davis County, Utah.

“Increasing access to behavioral health services in our region is an important part of improving the health of our communities. I’m excited that we’ll have someone of Maureen Womack’s caliber to help us bring this to fruition,” said Bill Robertson, CEO of MultiCare Health System.

“We are confident that Womack’s experience and leadership will ensure the highest quality care and support are provided to our most vulnerable populations and families,” said Ketul J. Patel, CEO of CHI Franciscan Health. “Our new Behavioral Health Hospital is just one step in our journey to improve the health and wellness of our region and state.”

Womack’s educational background includes a master’s degree in psychology and dual bachelor’s degrees in psychology and sociology from the University of South Alabama.

About the Behavioral Health Hospital

The freestanding, two-story hospital will be located on the MultiCare Allenmore Hospital Campus in Tacoma. The hospital will employ a staff of about 300 to serve approximately 5,000 patients each year. The hospital will vastly improve the number of adult behavioral health inpatient beds in the Pierce County community, from 2.8 beds to 16.3 beds per 100,000 population. Professional staff of the nonprofit hospital will provide stabilization and recovery for adults age 18 and older and will treat behavioral health and co-existing secondary medical or chemical dependency conditions. Services include a 16-bed crisis stabilization unit that will serve as a behavioral health-focused, 24/7 receiving site for direct patient transport by law enforcement, ambulance and fire/medics. This new facility will better serve patients with mental illness or substance use disorders with specialized staff and facilities. The new hospital will help serve the one in five adults who will experience symptoms associated with a diagnosable behavioral health disorder this year.

About CHI Franciscan Health

CHI Franciscan Health is a nonprofit health system based in Tacoma, Washington with $2.6 billion in net revenue and a team of nearly 12,000 doctors, nurses and staff that provide expert, compassionate medical care at eight acute care hospitals and approximately 200 primary and specialty care clinics in Pierce, King and Kitsap counties. This includes St. Anthony Hospital, Gig Harbor; St. Clare Hospital, Lakewood; St. Elizabeth Hospital, Enumclaw; St. Francis Hospital, Federal Way; St. Joseph Medical Center, Tacoma; Harrison Medical Center, Bremerton and Silverdale; Highline Medical Center, Burien; and Regional Hospital, Burien. Started in 1891 by the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, today CHI Franciscan Health is one of the largest health systems in Washington state. The system spans more than 1,100 acute care beds, a credentialed medical staff of more than 1,500 including more than 800 employed physicians providing specialties in cardiovascular care, cancer care, orthopedics and sports medicine, neurosciences and women’s care. CHI Franciscan’s mission focuses on creating healthier communities, including caring for the poor and underserved. In 2015, the organization provided $141 million in community benefit, including $10 million in charity care. More information:

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MultiCare Health System
MultiCare is a not-for-profit health care organization with more than 18,000 team members, including employees, providers and volunteers. Learn more. More stories by this author
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