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Interim No More, Lomeo Takes over at Kaleida Health

(WBEN) Jody Lomeo, the interim CEO of Kaleida Health has been appointed to the post on a permanent basis, the hospital system announced Thursday.

  He has also been appointed to be CEO of Great Lakes Health System, the umbrella group that links Kaleida to ECMC.

Lomeo, the former CEO and before that Chief Financial Officer of Erie County Medical Center has been serving as interim head of the  10,000 employee hospital system since Jim Kaskie left the post at the end of June.

He takes over at a time of change, when union officials have worried about layoffs, as massive changes sweep through the health care system. He will also lead a period of growth and consolidation on the Buffalo Medical Campus.

In early January, the hospital system began talks with CWA 1168, proposing job restructuring and layoffs at DeGraff Memorial Hospital, Millard Fillmore Suburban, and Buffalo General.

" The organization has been re-energized and is again focused on consistently delivering high quality patient care, building productive relationships with all constituents and otherwise leveraging the system’s many strengths to re-establish ourselves as the leading provider of healthcare services in the region," said Kaleida board chair John Koelmel in a prepared statement.   (below)

Lomeo will oversee all Kaleida units including Buffalo General Medical Center and the The Gates Vascular Institute on the Buffalo Medical Campus, along with Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital in Amherst, DeGraff Memorial Hospital in North Tonawanda, and the soon to be relocated Women And Children's Hospital on Elmwood Avenue.

The system also operates a number of stand alone clinics and testing centers and the VNA of  Western New York. 

VERBATIM: Here's the announcement from Kaleida and the Great Lakes Health System   |  SEE ALSO: A statement from County Exec. Mark Poloncarz (below)



(BUFFALO, NEW YORK) -- The Kaleida Health Board of Directors has named Jody L. Lomeo president and CEO. Having served as its interim leader since January 31, 2014, Lomeo now assumes full leadership and responsibility for Western New York’s largest healthcare system and largest private employer.

In addition, the Board of Directors of the Great Lakes Health System of WNY also named Lomeo its president and CEO. Great Lakes Health has overseen the ongoing integration and collaboration between Kaleida Health and Erie County Medical Center Corporation (ECMCC) since 2006.

The respective board leaders point to Lomeo’s experience, his success across both Kaleida Health and ECMCC, along with the significant support from physicians, nurses and employees in making this decision.

"Jody has distinguished himself over the last three months while serving as our interim president and CEO," said John Koelmel, chair of the Kaleida Health Board of Directors. "The support that he has received from physicians, nurses, staff and the community at-large has been overwhelming. The organization has been re-energized and is again focused on consistently delivering high quality patient care, building productive relationships with all constituents and otherwise leveraging the system’s many strengths to re-establish ourselves as the leading provider of healthcare services in the region. As a result, it was clear that Jody is the right leader at a very critical time for Kaleida Health and our community. The combination of his strong track record at ECMCC, overall leadership skills and passion for the patient positions him very well to lead the organization."

Since being named to the interim positions in January, Lomeo and his team launched a primary care strategy with ECMCC and HealthNow, are re-engaging key partners including UBMD, Buffalo Medical Group and numerous other community physicians and physician groups, are working to improve quality and care at the bedside, are rebuilding a system-wide management team as well as a new and productive relationship with organized labor.


Lomeo has been an integral part of Great Lakes Health, ECMCC and Kaleida Health for over a decade as they built a strong and collaborative relationship. He was appointed to the ECMCC board in 2001, became chair of the ECMCC Board of Directors in 2003, was named CEO of ECMCC in 2009, and has served as vice chair of Great Lakes Health since its inception in 2006.

Kevin Hogan, chair of the ECMCC Board of Directors, said, "ECMCC's success under Jody Lomeo's leadership has been about community collaboration and a focus on patient care at the bedside. We are proud to be able to bring his inclusive style of leadership across the hospitals of Great Lakes Health and continue to engage physicians, nurses and staff to develop new ways to make our organizations more efficient and deliver even better quality care for our community. This is about three institutions – ECMCC, Kaleida Health and Great Lakes Health – speaking with one voice on behalf of our community."

In addition to being named president and CEO of Kaleida Health and Great Lakes Health, Lomeo has stepped down as CEO of ECMCC. That move is intended to accelerate progress toward integration in the most compliant and efficient manner in accordance with New York Public Authority Law.

Richard C. Cleland, as the site president of ECMCC, will assume Lomeo’s day to day duties. Site presidents at each Kaleida Health location will be as follows: Cheryl Klass, Buffalo General Medical Center (including overseeing the Gates Vascular Institute and HighPointe on Michigan); Chris Lane, Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital and DeGraff Memorial Hospital; Allegra Jaros, Women & Children's Hospital of Buffalo and Judy Baumgartner, the Visiting Nursing Association of WNY.

Hogan added, "The ECMCC Board decided that Jody is far more valuable to the community and the overall system as the president and CEO of Great Lakes Health. He can be more instrumental in the strategic direction of the organizations, rather than just staying solely at ECMCC. This is another sign of the rock solid partnership between Kaleida Health and ECMCC. This is also a win/win for the organizations and the community."

As president and CEO of Great Lakes Health, Lomeo will provide leadership for all campuses and build a management team that will work together to coordinate care across all Kaleida Health and ECMCC sites. This team will continue the work of the past few months of re-engaging physicians, nurses and staff in transforming the care delivered to patients every day. This collaborative model will create efficiencies in care delivery and lead with quality to improve patient outcomes, as well as re-engineer the system to meet the new healthcare environment.

Lomeo has initiated a national search for a Great Lakes Health chief operating officer (COO) as well. The COO position will have system operational responsibility. The goal is to ensure that the respective hospitals are coordinated, quality-led, patient-focused and cost-efficient.

"We are very fortunate to have someone who understands all three organizations, defines collaboration and understands the challenges of our community. As someone who was born and raised here, Jody understands and cares deeply about Western New York," said

And from Erie County Exec Mark Poloncarz: "I commend the Kaleida Health Board of Directors for naming Jody Lomeo as President & CEO and I congratulate Jody on the position. He is an excellent choice to lead Kaleida as well as the Great Lakes Health System, as he has vast knowledge and experience with today’s healthcare models and has the ability to bring people together to achieve goals. I have had the pleasure of working with Jody in the past and have seen his aptitude in creating consensus, making sound, practical decisions, and creatively solving problems. He brings a significant skill set to his new positions and I look forward to working with him in the future.”


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