As female leadership continues to grow in our country, we would like to recognize a passionate leader in our organization: Market President, Suzanne Heck. Suzanne’s role is over the Southeast and Midwest regions, covering Georgia, Jacksonville, FL, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Arkansas, Iowa, and Oklahoma, and encompassing 65 practices focused on providing high quality, evidence-based, and cost-effective care. With a long-standing reputation for leading change in high-growth organizations, her focus is on growing revenue, reducing costs, and improving margins.
A strong foundation
Over her career, Suzanne has spent 20 years as a CFO or COO within a hospital setting, working for large health systems and teaching hospitals. Early on, she sought to support hospital operations management through process improvement to improve quality and profitability results. Suzanne prided herself on providing insight into the health system and regional business units management to explain variances and to recommend action plans. Working in healthcare, Suzanne had exposure to Pediatrix™ Medical Group before joining the organization. Early on in her interview process, she knew Pediatrix had something unique to offer, with programs like BabySteps® and the 100,000 Babies Campaign. She recognized Pediatrix was driving innovation as a leader and improving patient outcomes with data-driven insights.
In 2013, Suzanne joined the team at Pediatrix as the Pediatrix CFO and transitioned to the Western Division CFO. She had responsibilities for $2.5B in revenue, managed care, revenue cycle management, and finance. Suzanne led the charge for implementing the first Value-Based Purchasing agreement tying clinical performance to reimbursement in 2015. In 2016, Suzanne left Pediatrix to pursue a role in private equity. Ultimately, she realized that wasn’t what she wanted for herself and her career. Suzanne missed the culture, camaraderie, and career nurturing she had experienced at Pediatrix. After rejoining the company in 2017, she found a rewarding relevance to the company’s mission in the role she serves today. Suzanne describes her work as deeply satisfying and credits stepping briefly away from Pediatrix gave her the opportunity to discover what was right for her.
“Every day is a new day. I approach it as an adventure. I’m very excited about the changes in our organization. We can grow current practice medical directors into strong leaders – to make our practices strong and make our relationships with the hospitals even stronger.”
Strength in numbers
Suzanne places high value on her team – made up of several diverse leaders – and is passionate about developing talent and creating a high-performing culture that consistently achieves success. She and her team work to support practices by providing expertise to identify profitable initiatives, drive growth, and streamline processes. She is quick to shine a light on how vital her team is to her success. Her unique team’s strengths combine to create a cohesive unit that can utilize one another as resources. Suzanne prides herself on working with people who are go-getters and those who are committed to what they do. This collaboration ensures her team is energized about growth and will support and advocate for the physicians and practices. One of Suzanne’s goals is to ensure that our clinicians know they have people at Pediatrix who are ready to help solve their problems.
Strength in commitment to the patients
You may be wondering, with Suzanne’s experience, skills and knowledge, what keeps her in healthcare? Suzanne is passionate about what she does, and a considerable part of that is working with the clinicians. Suzanne notes that in her time at Pediatrix, she has worked with some of the best physicians. Her love for her job stems from the clinician’s love of caring for patients and their families. That is their priority. When Suzanne has visited clinicians at practices, they often walk her through their daily routines. But, she says, when they talk about the babies, patients and families they care for, their demeanor changes. They light up as if they were talking about their own children. That compassion is rewarding for Suzanne to be a part of and see daily. And she sees it across the board at the practices she works with, no matter the subspecialty. When asked about the most critical idea she would share with others about Pediatrix, Suzanne replied, “One thing to know about Pediatrix is that we are here to serve patients and families – we talk the talk and walk the walk. At Pediatrix, patient care comes first. We take great care of the patient every day and in every way.”