An Elevated Experience

Market President Justin Doss weighs in on Our PATH, CHRISTUS Spohn’s strategic plan to transform the face of health care in South Texas.

Special to Inspire Coastal Bend

Big things are happening at CHRISTUS Spohn. The health system is just over a year away from completing an unprecedented $335 million investment to elevate health care in South Texas.

At the helm is a new leader, Justin Doss, FACHE – recently named market president for CHRISTUS Spohn. Doss joined the health system a year ago as chief operating officer, bringing his wife and three children to the Coastal Bend from Plano, Texas, and arriving at a pivotal moment in the organization’s 112-year history.

Now, as market president, Doss will lead operations and strategy for CHRISTUS Spohn, developing programs to improve quality, elevate patient experience and attract world-class physicians to the Coastal Bend.

Q: What do you see as some of the biggest health care challenges facing our community?
A: We’re at a great time of growth in South Texas. It’s an honor to be leading the team at CHRISTUS Spohn Health System, which is a health care leader in this community.

With that said, I think expanding access to care is an opportunity that we are really focusing on. Many in our community need health care services, but there are not enough providers in network that accept their health insurance. That can be frustrating for patients. That’s why CHRISTUS Spohn’s family medicine and emergency medicine residency programs, and the community’s support of local physicians and hospitals, is so crucial. We want to train the best doctors here and keep them here.

There’s also a culture of change currently in health care that can be challenging. Nationally, there are many changes in the health care industry. It can be difficult to keep up with it all, so it’s important that we navigate those changes and ensure our patients continue to have access to high-quality care.

Another focus for us is helping our community understand that great health care is available right here in their hometown. You don’t need to fly or drive to another city for world-class care. The more our community is informed about the excellent, specialized care that’s in our backyard, the more people will use it, which I think will create a healthier community overall.

Q: That being said, what are some of your goals for the health system?
A: You’ve probably seen all the cranes and construction going on at our campuses. This is an exciting project to be part of. We call it Our PATH, or People and Actions Transforming Health Care, which is CHRISTUS Spohn’s strategic plan to transform how and where we deliver health care in South Texas.

Two major components of the project are the recently opened Dr. Hector P. Garcia Memorial Family Health Center at our Memorial campus, and the new Patient Care Tower being built at the Shoreline campus. They are providing more ways for people to receive care.

Construction at Shoreline is moving toward completion, with our new 10-story Patient Care Tower scheduled to open in early 2019. I want to give special thanks to McCarthy, Perkins + Will Architects, CLK Architects, CBRE, Urban Engineers and Beecroft Construction, who have been great partners on this project.

We also have a daily goal to live our mission, which is to extend the healing ministry of Jesus Christ. That means we treat every patient as if we were treating Christ himself. This is something I feel we achieve every day.

Q: What impact do you see PATH having in our community?
A: When people hear about Our PATH, many might think of just the buildings. And while those are very important, this project is much more than the construction at Shoreline and Memorial. Our PATH is about better access to health care, and access to the right type of care.

The Dr. Hector P. Garcia Center sees nearly 3,500 patients now and fills more than 16,000 prescriptions a month. The way our community is utilizing the health center I think affirms the purpose behind PATH: creating more access for patients.

Our PATH is a $335 million investment to our community made possible by CHRISTUS Health and generous donors in our community – no taxpayer dollars are used. This project really is by us, for us.

But PATH is not really about bricks and mortar – it’s about people. It means filling our hospitals with excellent and compassionate associates. We actively recruit the best and brightest to care for our patients, and together, we’re moving health care forward in South Texas.

Q: With so many changes in health care both nationally and locally, how does CHRISTUS Spohn navigate these changes?
A: We do this by keeping our mission – to extend the healing ministry of Jesus Christ – front-and-center with every decision we make. And we are focused on having the best physicians, nurses, associates and leadership at each facility.

This year alone, we’ve brought in several new health care providers and administrators, all of which have experience in some of the nation’s largest institutions. They’ve helped create best practices that we can use to manage those challenges and changes.

Q: CHRISTUS Spohn has been around for 112 years, what do you think the next 112 years will look like for the health system?
A: We want to increase focus on consumer-driven choices; that means listening to our patients and responding to their needs. And we also are committed to building stronger partnerships between our patients, hospitals, physicians and insurance companies.

That kind of synergy is beneficial to everyone. I believe we’ll continue to see some of the best physicians using the latest technology to provide high-quality care right here in our community we call home. Finally, I know that Our PATH is going to affect positive change in South Texas for generations to come. We are building the future of health care, today.

To learn more about Our PATH, visit www.ourpathforward.org.

Photos courtesy of Christus Spohn