Leah Rosengaus oversees the Health Care Talent Innovations (HCTI) program at eight large acute care medical centers—St. John’s Regional Medical Center in Oxnard, Calif., St. John’s Pleasant Valley Hospital in Camarillo, Calif., Glendale Adventist Medical Center in Glendale, Calif., St. Francis Medical Center in Lynwood, Calif., California Hospital Medical Center in Los Angeles and Seattle-based Swedish Medical Center’s First Hill Campus, Cherry Hill Campus and Issaquah Campus. Rosengaus’ role is to support hospital-based regional and program managers to implement programs that add value to the patient experience, leverage local talent to provide clinical support to staff and improve customer service in the acute-care setting. She directly supervises a five-member team and is responsible for business and service line development, contract management, as well as recruitment and staff development for her division.
Rosengaus shared her thoughts on topics such as her favorite parts of the job and mentoring future health care workers.
On her favorite aspects of her role at COPE Health Solutions
Rosengaus: I truly appreciate the opportunity to connect with my clients. We don’t just bring a template solution; we really take the time to understand what our clients need from a work force, patient experience and staff engagement perspective. Then we look at how we can leverage this incredible resource, which are our students and programs, to help them reach those goals. To problem solve, be innovative, partner with clients, and have that trust is very rewarding. Also, my team is unbelievable. They have so much creativity and energy, and they really believe in the mission of our work. It makes it an absolute pleasure to go to work every day.
On mentoring future health care workers
Rosengaus: We have almost 4,000 students that go through our HCTI pipeline each year. That is a significant number of future health care workers that we get to inspire, train and instill with the right motivation, best practices, work ethic, compassion and cultural competence. We have the chance to really show them what is needed in a health care provider of the future, and change the perspective with which care is delivered. That mentorship and teaching aspect was something that I don’t think I realized, when I first started working for COPE as a program manager, that I would enjoy so much.
On recent successes
Rosengaus: Our big success of late has been our division’s ability to grow. This year alone, we are adding five new clients. We have shored up our internal operations and have done a much better job at quantifying the value that we are able to bring to clients and students. This past year, we implemented programs in Seattle, which was a huge milestone for us because it is our first new region outside of California. We have also leveraged our core Clinical Care Extender (CCE) Program to run some very innovative projects with our clients. For instance, we are supporting one client’s meaningful use journey by training CCEs to engage patients on their online patient portal. We have also launched a discharge phone-call project and a patient experience ambassador program to help our clients achieve very specific goals around patient experience.
On what led her to a career in health care
Rosengaus: My education was in health promotion and global medicine through the USC, Keck School of Medicine. I thought I would end up in policy. Throughout school, I was a CCE Program participant for three years and worked directly with patients. I was also on the executive team of that program, where I picked up leadership and management skills. I loved that experience; it was transformative for me. I was working at a policy and advocacy organization when COPE asked if I would be the lead implementer of the CCE Program at a new hospital site. What really spoke to me, and what makes COPE unique, is that the model we bring is really a win for every stakeholder. When we implement in the CCE Program, we are connecting health care organizations with 300 to 500 students from the community to directly support clinical staff. They have extra hands on every unit who are supporting patient care and it’s a huge boost for staff morale. The CCEs are trained significantly beyond the scope of average ancillary volunteers to provide basic patient comfort care. It’s the most hands-on program that you can find anywhere in the country. I also see this as a win for the community. The students are recruited regionally, and will hopefully grow into roles within their program site, which means we are keeping jobs and dollars in the local community.