Chief Medical Officer Dr. Rachel Thompson Reflects on the Past Year of Watching Core from the Outside.
As Dr. Rachel Thompson remembers, a key moment when she knew Core was different was during a meeting with its Chief Operating Officer, Jessica Long.
“She was uniquely focused on clinician wellness in a way that is very rare to see from a COO,” Thompson said. “We were brainstorming ways to keep our clinicians and corporate team happy and healthy.”
The moment was emblematic of something Thompson has seen again and again over the past year in which she has been working with Core Clinical Partners. During that time, Thompson has maintained a full-time role as Chief Medical Officer for Snoqualmie Valley Hospital and Health District in Seattle. That is in addition to her responsibilities as President of the Society of Hospital Medicine (SHM) 2022-2023.
What she saw was a virtuous snowball effect: Core has attracted great people to the team; and it has also been set up to give people the flexibility to focus on what’s truly best for the health system partners and the patients they serve. Unlike many other HM and EM physician services groups, Core Clinical Partners has grown without the constraints of outside investors who pursue an acquisition-based growth strategy. Instead, Core has grown entirely organically, based on the strength of its existing HM and EM programs to act as references. This has allowed Core’s clinical and operational leaders to remain flexible and focused in their approach to each set of challenges.
“Core has consistently shown a knack for not just attracting talent but also fostering an environment where this talent is nurtured and encouraged to excel,” Thompson said.
As a result of Core’s structure and growth strategy, Core’s operational and clinical teams, all the way from senior leaders to the clinical recruiting team, to the physicians, NPs, and PAs who are providing care, feel empowered to act and can focus on their missions without worrying about externally imposed success metrics, whether financial or otherwise.
“Core’s approach is highly personalized. It’s about focusing on what the people and system actually need, rather than imposing preconceived, one-size-fits-all solutions,” she stated, “ This, in turn, helps support a culture that attracts even more good people.”
Another example: Thompson recalls helping Core’s team improve operations at a new partner that had had difficulty keeping the site fully staffed, with an overreliance on locums. Within months of taking over, Core’s recruiting team had managed to get the site full-staffed—the difference between the previous group and Core, Thompson observed, was simply the recruiting team’s commitment to and passion for the job. “We were able to attract clinicians to the site, where the previous group had not.”
Thompson has seen Core’s operations from both the outside—as an operational consultant helping to improve select hospital medicine partnerships—as well as on the inside—helping to coach clinical leaders. She recently joined the group full-time as Chief Medical Officer.
“Rachel is a nationally respected leader in Hospital Medicine,” Core CEO Dr. Boykin Robinson said. “We are extremely pleased she’s decided to continue her career at Core, and I have no doubt our hospital partners and clinical teams throughout the country will benefit from her progressive, people-first approach.”