During a 40 year medical career, Dr. Patricia Gabow was an academic nephrologist, physician administrator, and contributor to national health policy. As a nephrologist she was a clinician, teacher, and investigator with emphasis on fluid and electrolyte balance and autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease.
She was Principal Investigator on the largest clinical NIH Program Project Grant in Polycystic Kidney Disease for 15 years which produced seminal observations. She authored over 150 articles and book chapters. As a physician leader she served as Director of Medical Services (Chair), Medical Director (Chief Medical Officer) and finally as the CEO of Denver Health, a large integrated public health care system. During her leadership of Denver Health she led the transformation of a struggling public hospital system into a model integrated, high quality, fiscally stable system. This was accomplished in five steps: managing finances to put the system in black where it remained for the 20 years of her leadership despite providing $4.7 billion of uninsured care; moving the entire integrated delivery system from a city government department which it had been for 135 years to an independent, governmental entity, enabling flexibility and innovation while maintaining public accountability; investing over $300 million dollars in the physical plant creating state of the art facilities for vulnerable populations; investing over $400 million in information technology providing robust data and tools to improve quality, accountability and efficiency; and creating and adopting innovations such as advice nurse lines, school-based clinics, standardized computer order sets, and Toyota Production/Lean to improve the accessibility, quality, and cost of care by adapting tools from other industries. Dr. Gabow’s contributions to national health policy are reflected in her appointments to the Commonwealth Commission on a High Performing Health System, the federal Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC, 17 members) , the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Board, the National Governors’ Association Health Advisory Committee, and the Aspen Group. She is a Professor of Medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine.
As the Director of the Lean Systems Improvement Department at Denver Health from 2006 to 2013, Goodman provided the leadership and management for the core team of Lean facilitators, generating significant improvements to the quality of care for the patients and positive financial impact for the organization. He directed the day-to-day operations of the Lean Systems Improvement Department and the application of Lean principles and tools in a variety of clinical and nonclinical settings across the enterprise. Goodman developed the curriculum for the Denver Health Black Belt training program and The Lean Academy at Denver Health. He was instrumental in representing Denver Health’s Lean initiative for process improvement in March of 2011 when it became the first health care organization to be awarded the “Bronze Medallion Shingo Prize for Operational Excellence” in recognition of their Lean initiative.
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