Entrusting a legacy: New chair takes over WellStar Board of Trustees
by Hilary Butschek
August 17, 2014 04:00 AM | 3161 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Former WellStar Board of Trustees Chairman Janie Maddox and present Chairman Gary Miller stand in front of Kennestone Hospital on Friday. Maddox has two years left on the board and will be an asset, according to Miller, in aiding him to settle into his new position, which Maddox passed down to him July 1, when her term as chairman expired. <br>Staff/Kelly J. Huff
Former WellStar Board of Trustees Chairman Janie Maddox and present Chairman Gary Miller stand in front of Kennestone Hospital on Friday. Maddox has two years left on the board and will be an asset, according to Miller, in aiding him to settle into his new position, which Maddox passed down to him July 1, when her term as chairman expired.
Staff/Kelly J. Huff
slideshow
Maddox and Miller stroll through Kennestone as they discuss upcoming leadership initiatives and the course to take to insure quality health care to the WellStar’s patients. <br>Staff/Kelly J. Huff
Maddox and Miller stroll through Kennestone as they discuss upcoming leadership initiatives and the course to take to insure quality health care to the WellStar’s patients.
Staff/Kelly J. Huff
slideshow
Gary Miller said he feels intimidated to take over the position as chairman of the WellStar Board of Trustees, but he’s excited.

“It’s huge shoes to fill,” said Miller, who took over after Janie Maddox’s term expired July 1. “I have sat back and wondered if I’ll be able to do half the things she’s done.”

But Maddox, who has been on the board for 15 years, said she won’t be leaving any time soon.

Maddox said being a member of the board and participating in five of its seven committees still keeps her busy.

“I have enjoyed working with the entire board and members of the past, because the accomplishments that have been made are not because of me, they’re because of those that came before me,” Maddox said.

Maddox said she will pass down her legacy as chair to Miller with confidence.

“He has been a joy to work with,” Maddox said. “He’s smart, thorough and he knows what questions to ask.”

Miller, who is also the president and CEO of Douglasville-based GreyStone Power Corporation, said he wants to keep WellStar on track to accomplish its motto of providing world class health care.

“I’m not really bringing anything new,” Miller said. “I just want to fine-tune what we have already accomplished.”

Maddox will continue to participate as a member of the board until her term expires in 2016. Because of term limits, she cannot participate on the board after that.

Miller’s two-year term as chair will expire July 2016.

Expanding WellStar

Maddox, a retired vice president of Atlanta-based Post Properties, a housing community company, said one of her main goals as a leader of WellStar was to bring medical care closer to home.

Maddox said the addition of two health parks — one in Paulding County, which opened in April, and another in east Cobb, which will open in September — makes health care more convenient for people.

“One of our strategies has been trying to bring health care services into the community,” Maddox said. “We’ve done that with these health parks.”

Miller added the new locations are convenient because they allow patients to receive multiple types of care in the same place. So, someone with a broken arm, he said, can come to the health park for an X-ray, a cast and medication.

“People want the best that they can get, but they also want it close and easy to get,” Miller said.

The new location in Paulding County has exceeded all expectations, Miller said, and is constantly busy.

Updating technology

Maddox said she is also proud of WellStar’s digital records system, called Epic.

The new system keeps everything about a patient’s medical history, including medications, surgeries and conditions, in one file doctors at all WellStar locations can access.

Maddox said the system makes it safer for doctors to prescribe medicine because they can keep track of medical details a patient might forget, such as the names of medications.

“It’s like a history book of your life,” Maddox said.

Miller added future plans for the system include allowing patients to access their records on their smart phones.

“It would be bringing health care to your phone and to the person so you can transmit with your health care professional,” Miller said.

Miller said he’s excited to look at more possibilities with the system and to work off of what Maddox has already accomplished before him.

“I’m thankful Janie will still be around,” Miller said. “I could use her help.”

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