Statement from Tony Armada, CEO, Swedish Health Services

February 10, 2017
When I walk through the halls of our hospitals, talk with caregivers about their work, and meet with patients and listen to their experiences, I know that the commitment and compassion of our caregivers is the reason Swedish has been such a trusted institution in Seattle for more than 100 years.

To start, I want to say on behalf of Swedish that we extend our deepest sympathy to Talia’s family.

We often care for some of the most complex cases, and with patients that are at their most vulnerable. This is why I am so disheartened to see how Swedish, our Neuroscience Institute (SNI) and some of our caregivers have been portrayed in media coverage and I would like to address a few items directly. 

It was implied that our priorities are misplaced. Our number one priority is quality care and patient safety, and caring for all patients who need us. In 2015, Swedish devoted more than $175 million to important Community Benefit programs, with $110 million dedicated to charity care and care not fully funded by state and federal programs. 

We track quality and patient outcomes and use industry benchmarks to measure our success. We track and share quality data because we believe it leads to better informed consumers, continuous improvement, as well as collaboration between hospitals, and outside quality experts.

According to national comparative data, Cherry Hill outperforms other neurosurgery centers for patient survival and for limiting readmission for neurosurgical procedures.

SNI treats many of the most complicated medical cases. We care for patients who often have some of the most challenging care needs and our team of clinicians work to provide the best outcomes possible. Swedish caregivers strive every day to provide the highest quality, most compassionate care to patients and to their families.

We believe that our caregivers are the heart of this life-saving, life-changing patient care. To maintain a culture of safety, each and every employee is supported and empowered to raise safety concerns. Any concerns about quality of care are addressed immediately and thoroughly reviewed with oversight from medical committees, senior leadership and third-party experts when needed. 

The number of patients receiving care at SNI has increased over the past few years due to a number of reasons, including the Affordable Care Act providing greater access to care, the addition of new physicians, new highly-specialized procedures, our reputation and overall high level of quality.

Dr. Delashaw was selected to join SNI because of his strong record of providing excellent care to his patients. Dr. Delashaw and Dr. Oskouian both work on some of the most complex cases and produce excellent outcomes for their patients.

As a health care provider, we cannot legally share details of any patients’ medical history with anyone outside of their family members and health care providers involved in their care – this is an established trust we have with patients and families. 

Swedish has always been committed to providing the best care possible for our community.  Our more than 14,000 caregivers are some of the most talented and caring people with whom I have ever worked. I have full confidence in their commitment to treat our patients with respect, care and compassion.

Anthony A. Armada, FACHE
Chief Executive Officer
Swedish Health Services