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Engagement – The Samaritan Difference

Special contribution by Phillip W. Heath 
Chief Administrative Officer, Tabula Rasa Healthcare
Board Chair, Samaritan Healthcare & Hospice

I am honored to share my delight in being elected as the 2019 chair of the Samaritan Healthcare & Hospice Board of Trustees. My vision for Samaritan in 2019 is to continue to be a vanguard of engagement.  Samaritan has demonstrated that mission and community impact are complementary of one another.  We have engaged our organization at the national, state, and local levels affecting the care, quality, and outcomes of hospice and palliative care.

Over 30 years ago, I had the great fortune of being introduced to hospice and palliative care in a public health class in college.  Little did I know that it would become my life’s calling.  More importantly, little did I know that my paths with Samaritan would cross twice before I would have the privilege to serve this great organization, doing good work, through its Board of Trustees.

In the early 2000’s, I had the opportunity to meet Samaritan leadership while working on a project with another hospice in Denver, CO.  At that time, I had no clue that I would end up living in South Jersey, working in healthcare.  As I began to engage with the community, I rediscovered Samaritan and began serving on the board and various committees, which led me to my role today.

Engagement – that is the key word.  Having lived and/or worked in more than 10 major metropolitan communities in my adult life, I can confidently say that the key to understanding a community is to become engaged in the community.

As chair, I am committed to continuing the path of engagement as we expand our partnerships with other community providers to ensure serious illness is addressed from a national payment model, hospice and palliative care education is raised as part of crucial conversations, and quality care outcomes are experienced through grief support, community care and inpatient hospice services, as needed.

As we move forward in 2019, I challenge you to join us on this mission…Choose Samaritan.