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Baylor All Saints’ president focuses on the future

🕐 5 min read

Betty Dillard bdillard@bizpress.net

David Klein knew at an early age he wanted to become a physician. “I had a role model who was a family physician,” he said. “His Marcus Welby personality and clinical skills in helping people and impacting lives positively through his abilities, knowledge and compassionate care inspired me. This experience, coupled with my love of life science, helped spark my decision to become a physician.”

A New Mexico native, Klein received his medical degree from the University of New Mexico and practiced general surgery for 14 years before becoming a full-time hospital administrator. He joined Baylor Health Care System in 2009 as chief operating officer at Baylor All Saints Medical Center at Fort Worth and as the hospital administrator at Baylor Medical Center at Southwest Fort Worth. Klein had been interim president at Baylor All Saints since July 2012 before becoming president in June 2013.

Baylor All Saints is part of Baylor Scott & White Health, the organization formed from the 2013 merger between Baylor Health Care System and Scott & White Healthcare. Today Bayor Scott & White is the largest not-for-profit health care system in Texas. Baylor All Saints is a 574-bed, fully accredited hospital that offers a broad spectrum of medical and health care services, including heart and vascular, cancer care, transplantation, women’s services and neurosciences. Klein leads more than 1,800 employees and a medical staff of more than 1,100 physicians representing nearly 25 specialties. He also oversees a kidney transplant program that recently saw its 1,000th transplant. Under Klein’s leadership, Baylor All Saints Medical Center was named high performing in three categories in U.S. News & World Report’s Best Hospitals rankings for 2014-2015: gastroenterology/GI surgery, urology and nephrology. “Always put the patient’s needs first in all of your decisions,” Klein advises his staff. “Mentor your care teams and use your knowledge to train and teach the next generation of providers.” Klein says his family – wife, Barbara, and three children ages 13, 17 and 18 – keeps him grounded, along with sports. He enjoys hiking, biking, running and boating. His most recent hobby is triathlons; he completed his first in July and plans to compete again soon. Klein recently completed rounds with the Fort Worth Business Press.

What goals have you set for the hospital? Have you already met any of them? Baylor All Saints strives to provide exemplary care to Fort Worth and surrounding communities. We work diligently to enhance and expand our services and advance our level of care while treating each patient like a member of our own family. We have successfully accomplished a number of goals this past year such as obtaining primary stroke center accreditation, chest pain and heart failure accreditation, advanced palliative care accreditation, recognition as a top hospital by U.S. News and World Report and designation as an advanced (Level III) trauma facility. Baylor All Saints offers a full range of services to meet the needs of our community, which positions us well for the future.

Congratulations on the recent milestone kidney transplant. Is the expansion of the transplant program one of the goals? The achievement of reaching 1,000 kidney transplants is truly a significant accomplishment for Baylor All Saints. Our world-renowned physicians on our medical staff and highly trained staff have made transplant services a shining star. Our transplant services reach well beyond Fort Worth since our kidney transplant team now travels weekly to a kidney transplant clinic in Lubbock, and soon the team will add Amarillo. Setting up these clinics is part of Baylor All Saints’ patient-centered care. We want to provide services – pre-transplant evaluation or transplant follow up for post-transplant patients – in a convenient setting for our patients. We are looking forward to growing and expanding transplant services in the future.

Baylor Scott & White Health recently founded the Texas Care Alliance for community-based health care providers to share clinical and administrative data. How will this collaboration impact health care services for patients and providers? The practice of paying hospitals and physicians for quality of care rather than for the amount of care is spreading at a rapid rate. It’s crucial for health care providers to collaborate to accelerate change with the goal to improve quality and efficiency, lower health care costs and accelerate medical innovation. Texas Care Alliance will be the platform for providers to adopt common metrics, measure performance and share clinical and administrative best practices with its membership. The Fort Worth Chamber named Baylor All Saints a Best Workplace for Women in 2013. What is the hospital doing to attract and retain top female talent? Developing a compassionate, caring environment for not only our patients, but our staff to work in is imperative to our hospital’s success. We treat our staff like family and celebrate individual and team successes every day. Baylor All Saints offers an onsite daycare, which provides convenience to those employees with young children. We also have the ability to offer flexible scheduling to many of our staff, which provides them with work-life balance as well. Baylor All Saints helps all employees grow in their careers through professional development. With the help of tuition reimbursement, many clinical staff members continue their education, earning advanced degrees.

What’s the best part of your job? And the worst? There is no better feeling than to make a positive impact in the lives of people who depend on us for care. Working with such a talented team and witnessing selfless acts of servanthood and care is truly humbling. Part of my routine is to regularly “round” with the clinical team. During that “rounding” process I get to see the clinicians interact with patients and hear about a patient’s experience in their own words. The worst part of the health care environment today is the unknown changes ahead with health care reform. Trying to always be one step ahead of changes is a challenge that we are undertaking at Baylor All Saints.

 

Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

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