Retiring CEO reflects on big changes for small hospitals

Oct 5, 2016

Charlevoix Hospital CEO Lyn Jenks
Credit Munson Healthcare

Lyn Jenks has served as CEO of Charlevoix Hospital since 2012. She announced her retirement last week.

Jenks has overseen many changes at the hospital. Since the passage of the Affordable Care Act, the federal government views healthcare much differently, and that’s had a big impact on small, rural hospitals.

“There’s increased emphasis on prevention of illness,” says Jenks. “And when you think about the high cost of health care, especially chronic disease and end of life care, the best possible way to save those dollars is not to spend them in the beginning. So if we can keep people healthier all throughout their lives … that’s a great investment.”

At the same time, hospitals are consolidating. Last year, Charlevoix Hospital became part of Munson Healthcare.

“[We] came to the conclusion that the best partner for us, going into the future, was Munson Healthcare,” says Jenks. “In the first year alone, we saved nearly $300,000 … so they have brought real saving to the hospital operation.”

Jenks spoke with IPR News about her retirement plans, and how the hospital has still been able to build new facilities and provide new services to the Charlevoix community.