Builders of UC Health to leave
After building it, they will leave. Rulon Stacey and Bruce Schroffel, who helped create University of Colorado Health three years ago, are stepping down from their respective positions as president and CEO, effective Jan. 31.
Schroffel was president and CEO of the University of Colorado Hospital, Aurora, and Stacey, president and CEO of Poudre Valley Health System in Fort Collins, when they began talks in 2010 to merge. A letter of intent was signed the following June, and a joint operating agreement was finalized in January 2012. Before it even became an official entity, Stacey and Schroffel persuaded city leaders in Colorado Springs to choose UC Health over several other suitors to manage the municipally owned Memorial Health System.
Last August, voters approved the $1.8 billion, 30-year lease which brings in Children’s Hospital Colorado, Aurora, as a subcontractor to manage Memorial’s 100 pediatric beds. On Jan. 1, UC Health crossed the state border and began managing Ivinson Memorial Hospital, a 90-bed institution in Laramie, Wyo.
“Bruce and Rulon, they formed the system together,” said spokesman Dan Weaver. “They’ve worked closely together. So I think it’s not so surprising that they decided to leave together.”
Stacey, 53, will spend the next six months focused on the transition and planning his next move, Weaver said. Schroffel, 62, plans to retire. “This was their decision,” Weaver said. Originally, Schroffel was president and Stacey was CEO, but they switched roles in June 2012, so Schroffel could focus on operations and Stacey could develop business strategy, partnerships, marketing and government relations. Aurora-based UC Health plans to combine the two positions. Dr. William Neff, the system’s chief medical officer, will serve as interim president and CEO starting Oct. 1.
In the meantime, competition in Colorado is intensifying as Phoenix-based Banner Health, working in alliance with Kaiser Permanente, keeps expanding its presence. Banner spokesman Paul Matthews said Banner is opening a health center in Fort Collins on Sept. 9. In two weeks, Banner’s board will vote on plans for a hospital in Fort Collins. On Aug. 22, Kaiser opened a health IT data center in suburban Denver, where 700 employees are expected to work by 2015.