Fred Price has been named president and CEO of DeKalb Health, the Auburn hospitals directors announced Wednesday.
He begins the position at the independent, nonprofit hospital on Jan. 21.
Price most recently was CEO of Bloomingtons Monroe Hospital, which employs more than 400. He led that health care provider for 4 1/2 years.
He left that position in September, when Monroe Hospital entered an agreement with Indianapolis-based St. Vincent Health to manage its operations. During the interim, Price remained in Bloomington and launched Sapphire Development and Consulting LLC.
Price rose through the ranks at Monroe Hospital, previously serving as vice president of patient care services and chief nursing officer. The 32-bed hospital is owned by Birmingham, Ala.-based Medical Properties Trust Inc.
Price, a North Carolina native, couldnt be reached for comment Wednesday.
Alan Middleton, chairman of DeKalb Healths board of directors, praised Price as a capable, focused, approachable leader who is forward-thinking and easily connects with all levels of an organization.
We are confident his expertise, enthusiasm and proven accomplishments in leadership, organizational development and strategic growth will serve DeKalb Health and our community well, Middleton said in a written statement.
Price will lead more than 525 employees and report to the board of directors. He replaces former CEO Kirk Ray, who resigned his position on Aug. 31. DeKalb Health officials have not revealed publicly the reason behind Rays abrupt departure.
Under Prices leadership, Monroe Hospital earned high marks for patient satisfaction and safety, including an A grade in June 2012 by The Leapfrog Group. The independent national non-profit organization scores hospitals from A to F on safety by reviewing public data on patient injuries, medical and medication errors, and infections.