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Section: Rideout Press Releases

Looking to the future at Rideout Memorial Hospital


Most organizations, especially those with long histories, inevitably go through their share of difficulties. Recently, Rideout faced significant challenges and fell short of our community’s expectations.

The good news is that because of a caring and dedicated family of physicians, nurses and staff, the hospital is moving forward with renewed energy and direction.

Additionally, an entirely new leadership team is now in place at Rideout and is taking ownership for the failures of the past, and more importantly are committed to re-building our future and continuing our heritage of quality and trust.

Setting a new direction for an institution of this size involves many priorities. Below are a few that my team considers to be critical:

  • High-quality patient care
  • Trust and transparency
  • Opening the new Rideout facility

Consistent, quality patient care is our foremost priority. There is little point in looking back and assigning blame or commentary on compliance issues. We have been given a task list and have no intention of arguing about it – every member of the Rideout team is focused on achieving each milestone set for us. We are already seeing the results of some of this work, with recognition last month from the American Heart Association for high adherence to heart attack quality measures in U.S. News and World Report.

Equally as important, is our intent to celebrate the amazing, life-saving work that goes on here every single day. It’s easy to forget those successes in our complex healthcare environment. We are developing initiatives that will keep them front and center – programs like the Rideout Rising Star, monthly staff newsletter spotlights and appreciation-sharing at department meetings. A hospital is only a building – our people define our quality of care, and we aim to recognize them for the heroes that they are.

Earning the trust of the community, our patients, and our internal family will require a commitment to transparency, integrity and communication. I personally commit to you a policy of complete transparency regarding the happenings at Rideout. You may not always agree with the plans and decisions made, but you will be informed and have the opportunity to be engaged.

Restoring the confidence of the community will take time, and actions will speak far louder than words. You will see evidence of this commitment in the coming weeks, through our new CEO Roundtable series and monthly letters directly from me which provide updates on our progress (whether good or bad) and challenges, and asking for your feedback.

Finally we know that restoring trust in the community is dependent on restoring the trust of our internal family. Monthly CEO/employee round table sessions will foster meaningful discussions between leadership and small work teams, and quarterly open forums will bring the entire hospital together regularly for a dialogue about the future direction of the hospital. A structure of open communication forces accountability on all sides and develops faith in our words and actions. All trust must start there.

In the near-term, our focus is launching the new Emergency Department, a $6 million, 5,000 square foot expansion designed to elevate the level of care and patient experience.

In the long term, a new 220,000 square foot building topped by a helipad supporting our Level III trauma center will forever change the scope of healthcare services in the region. There have been many challenges, and there is much work to be done in anticipation of a 2015 opening. There is much pride among the Rideout family in seeing this project come to fruition – a strong incentive to put the past behind us, and focus on building the Rideout of the future.

Robert (Bob) Chason is the interim CEO of Rideout Health.