Monday, August 16, 2010

AN INTERVIEW WITH… Peter Andruszkiewicz, President of Kaiser Permanente Georgia

Kaiser Permanente is Georgia's largest not-for-profit health plan. With approximately 230,000 members in metro Atlanta and 8.6 million nationwide, Kaiser Permanente is recognized as one of America's leading health care providers. And its mission is clear: Provide high-quality, affordable health care to improve the health of its members and the communities it serves.

Guided by expert teams of physicians, specialists and health care providers with The Southeast Permanente Medical Group, Kaiser Permanente provides care focused on its members' total health and supported by industry-leading technology and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, as well as state-of-the art delivery. Providing a superior member experience is at the core of the organization's values.

At the helm of Kaiser Permanente Georgia is President Peter Andruszkiewicz. A seasoned health care executive, Andruszkiewicz spent 18 years at CIGNA HealthCare before joining Kaiser Permanente in 2005 as vice president, National Accounts. In 2006, he became senior vice president, Health Plan Operations for regions outside California. He was named President of Kaiser Permanente Georgia in late 2008.

In the local community, Andruszkiewicz serves as chair of the Henry W. Grady Health System Foundation board. He also sits on the boards of the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, the Woodruff Arts Center, and the Metro Atlanta YMCA. He is a member of the Board of Councilors of The Carter Center and a member of the Buckhead Coalition. He is a graduate of Springfield College in Massachusetts and serves on its board of trustees.

Healthcare is one of five targeted industries in Partnership Gwinnett, the community and economic development initiative led by the Gwinnett Chamber to bring jobs and investment to the Greater Atlanta region. Andruszkiewicz shares Kaiser Permanente's expansion plans in metro Atlanta, which include new medical facilities as well as community involvement initiatives in Gwinnett.

Creating Jobs & Wealth

Q. Kaiser Permanente recently opened a new medical office in Lawrenceville, which was the third office to open this year in the metro Atlanta area. What are some of the factors that have led to these recent expansions in Gwinnett and metro Atlanta?

Our strategy is to provide members with more convenient access to Kaiser Permanente's high quality, coordinated health care system. By locating our new medical offices throughout metro Atlanta all of our members will be within a 20-minute drive of one of our facilities. Since announcing our expansion plans last year, we have opened four new medical offices, bringing our total to 23. Three additional medical offices are scheduled to open in the fall, including our fourth location in Gwinnett County in Snellville. We will add even more new facilities in 2011 as we continue to expand.

Growing Your Business

Q. Partnership Gwinnett research indicated that Gwinnett has significant potential for growth in the healthcare industry. How has Gwinnett's pro-business environment for healthcare businesses helped Kaiser Permanente expand in the local market?

Gwinnett is a thriving area. With an increasing number of our members living and working in Gwinnett, Kaiser Permanente wants to have a strong presence in the community. The tremendous support we have received from across the county has enabled us to expand and provide our members with convenient, high-quality coordinated care in difficult economic times.

Strengthening the Community

Q. As an investor in Partnership Gwinnett, why did Kaiser Permanente choose to support this community and economic development initiative? What are some of the other ways that Kaiser Permanente is involved in the local community?

We want to be a part of the community and we know that what is good for Gwinnett County is also good for Kaiser Permanente. Partnership Gwinnett is a great opportunity to provide support where we know it will have significant impact. We're also proud to sponsor the Gwinnett Chamber Chairman's Club Golf Tournament and the Lawrenceville Music Concert Series.

Kaiser Permanente is Georgia's largest non-profit health plan and one of our core values has always been to improve the health of communities, as well as the health of our members. For 25 years, we have invested millions of dollars back into communities as a part of our Community Benefit program. We partner with local non-profits, universities and local health departments to improve access to health care, train medical professionals and develop programs that promote healthy living. We work to address the root causes of poor health, and provide services to support healthier lifestyles, especially to under -served communities. This year we are investing nearly $30 million dollars in the community.

As part of our community benefit program, over the last two years, we've donated more than $260,000 to Gwinnett County organizations including Lawrenceville Cooperative Ministry, AID Gwinnett, the Hope Clinic, the Visiting Nurse Health System, and others.

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