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TeamHealth Names Mike D. Snow as President and CEO Effective September 1, 2014

Mike Snow

Mike Snow, President and Chief Executive Officer

(KNOXVILLE, Tenn.) August 26, 2014 – The Board of Directors of TeamHealth Holdings Inc. (NYSE:TMH), one of the nation’s largest providers of outsourced physician staffing solutions for hospitals, announced the appointment of Michael D. Snow as the company’s president, CEO and board member effective September 1, 2014.  Snow joined TeamHealth on April 22, 2013, as president, assuming responsibility for the company’s operations, revenue cycle, administrative services, sales, and marketing. Snow is replacing Greg Roth, who earlier this year announced his intent to retire from the CEO position after ten years leading the company. The Board of Directors considered an extensive slate of external and internal candidates before appointing Snow as its president and CEO.

“The Board conducted a thorough, nationwide search to find an individual with a broad healthcare management background and visionary leadership,” said Lynn Massingale, MD, FACEP, TeamHealth co-founder and chairman of the board. “Mike’s extensive healthcare experience within hospitals and healthcare systems combined with more than 25 years of business operations experience will serve TeamHealth well as it furthers its reputation for excellence in a continually evolving healthcare environment.” Throughout his career, Snow has held numerous executive-level positions in healthcare, including president of HCA Inc.’s Gulf Coast Division, executive vice president and chief operating officer of HealthSouth Corporation, president and chief executive officer of Surgical Care Affiliates, president and chief executive officer of Wellmont Health System, and chief operating officer of Amedisys, Inc. Snow earned his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Alabama and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Troy State University.

“I am deeply honored to assume the position of president and CEO of TeamHealth, and I am very proud to lead this team of driven healthcare professionals,” said Snow. “Healthcare is experiencing unprecedented change, and TeamHealth is well-positioned with the right leadership and strategy to succeed. TeamHealth’s continued success requires collaboration, innovation, leadership and integrity. These are the fundamentals I will focus on as we position ourselves for a bright future of continued growth and high performance for TeamHealth and our partners.”  Read More…

By |August 27, 2014|News & Events|Comments Off on TeamHealth Names Mike D. Snow as President and CEO Effective September 1, 2014

Saving Lives – One Triage Call at a Time

By Michelle Holztrager, RN

With the healthcare industry focused on saving costs, TeamHealth Medical Call Center just received a nice reminder of our role in saving lives. Though we often receive feedback in the form of compliments about our services, it is rare that we receive such detail on an outcome and discover we had a role in saving a patient’s life.

A patient called after talking to one of our triage nurses. She stated, “I want to express my gratitude to ‘Anna’ on the 24 hour nurse line. Last Sunday, my husband was having severe stomach cramping, which we thought was food poisoning or a virus. We called the nurse line and Anna was very thorough and professional. She was insistent that we go straight to a hospital instead of a minor emergency center. We immediately went to the hospital where it was determined that he had a ruptured appendix. He had an emergency appendectomy. The surgeon said it was a very severe case and that he could have died in less than 24 hours. Please tell Anna thank you.”

One of our RN Clinical Directors analyzed this call and what went right:

After hearing about this particular compliment, I listened to the call and want to point out some things that could have caused the nurse to jump to an immediate conclusion or that might have distracted her or led her down the wrong path on this call. About 70% of our callers, who think they need to go to the ED, have non-emergent outcomes. However, there is another small percentage of patients who don’t think they are having a serious issue, but are in need of emergent care. This call fell into the latter category. I want to commend Anna for utilizing her critical thinking skills and not allowing the caller to persuade her otherwise.

Synopsis of call:

Patient having severe stomach cramps, vomited once the previous evening, chills, temp. of 99.9 orally, one hr. after taking Ibuprofen. Rated his pain 6 out of 10. Stated his pain had been constant since the previous afternoon.

What conclusions could this nurse have assumed that might have led her down the wrong path? 

She could have assumed that this was a viral illness, since the patient vomited, had a fever however he denied any diarrhea.  Unable to sleep because of the stomach cramps.

  1. The patient rated his pain a 6 on a scale of 0-10.  On a pain scale, that is considered moderate pain.  Although the patient states it has been constant since the previous day and gets worse at times.
  2. When asked by the nurse if anyone close to the patient had been recently ill, his wife stated their daughter had a gastrointestinal virus with diarrhea just a couple of days prior but stated this was very different.

I highlighted the above pertinent information in this call.  Initially, this looks as if this is possibly a virus when in fact this patient had a ruptured appendix and needed to be taken to surgery immediately.

What differentiated this call into an ED outcome?

“Pain was constant for a long period of time although it fluctuated in intensity.

Would an urgent care recommendation been appropriate on this particular call?

The patient’s wife stated that they were supposed to fly out of town that day and asked if they could go to a minor emergency/urgent care center.  Kudos to our nurse for sticking to her “guns” and for persuading her caller to take the patient to an emergency department rather than an urgent care center. Anna simply stated that the urgent care center would not be equipped to care for her husband and could delay his care if it were something more serious. One of the more difficult aspects of telephone triage is critical thinking and following the guidelines, regardless of the desire of the caller, and our nurse executed excellent critical thinking skills in this instance.

We want to thank Anna and all our triage nurses for their professional call handling and their critical thinking skills. At TeamHealth Medical Call Center, we’re proud to say we’re saving lives, one at a time.


Michelle Holtztrager, TeamHealth Medical Call Center Leadership, Director of Education and Staff Development

Michelle Holtztrager, RN

Michelle Holtztrager, RN, is the Director of Education and Staff Development for TeamHealth Medical Call Center.

By |August 20, 2014|Blog, Telephone Triage|Comments Off on Saving Lives – One Triage Call at a Time

TeamHealth Names Miles S. Snowden, M.D., as New Chief Medical Officer

Miles S. Snowden, MD, MPH

Miles S. Snowden, MD, MPH

(KNOXVILLE, Tenn.) August 13, 2014 – TeamHealth Holdings Inc. (NYSE:TMH), one of the nation’s largest providers of outsourced physician staffing solutions for hospitals, announced the appointment of Miles S. Snowden, M.D., MPH, as the company’s chief medical officer effective September 15, 2014. Dr. Snowden is replacing Gar LaSalle, M.D., who retired from this position earlier this year.

“TeamHealth’s CMO plays a critical role in improving the overall quality of patient care provided by our affiliated physicians and advanced practice clinicians,” said Lynn Massingale, M.D., FACEP, TeamHealth co-founder and chairman of the board. “After an extensive nationwide search, we selected Dr. Snowden for his successful track record in improving patient outcomes and commitment to developing the health of communities.”
“I am honored to have been selected to serve as TeamHealth’s chief medical officer, and I look forward to working with this successful leadership team to continue the company’s advancement of quality patient care,” said Dr. Snowden. “I bring to this position my fervent belief that all healthcare stakeholders can be similarly benefited through thoughtful leadership, innovation, and consultation.”  Read More.

By |August 13, 2014|News & Events|Comments Off on TeamHealth Names Miles S. Snowden, M.D., as New Chief Medical Officer

Dr. Jack Seidel on Pediatric Telephone Triage

Jack Seidel, MD, has been a practicing pediatrician for 25 years. In addition to his own practice, he is Pediatric Medical Director at Medical City Children’s and audits pediatric triage calls on a regular basis. TeamHealth Medical Call Center caught up with Dr. Seidel for a brief Q & A during our TeamPeds Customer Service Quarterly Event.

Dr  Seidel small

Dr. Jack Seidel

THMCC: Please tell us, in your years of experience as a pediatrician, what are some tips on handling difficult or extremely anxious parents?
Dr. Seidel: Hear them out and repeat their concerns to them so that they know you have heard and are going to address all of their concerns.

THMCC: You write guidelines and review many triage calls. What are your thoughts on what you consider a superb triage call?
Dr. Seidel: A superb triage call can take many forms: such as when a nurse picks up something subtle that the caller said that results in a big difference in the way the call is handled; or when a parent who is very worried is reassured; or when the caller is asked if they have any other questions or concerns.

THMCC: What would you consider the greatest challenge in pediatric telephone triage?
Dr. Seidel: Not being able to examine the patient, look at the rash, see what the kid looks at, etc. Second would be language barriers – even with translations.

THMCC: In your opinion, what is the most commonly missed or underemphasized symptom in pediatric triage?
Dr. Seidel: Not with TeamHealth Medical Call Center, but in general an extremely important part of evaluating kids is how the kid looks and is acting. With phone triage, getting that information from the caller may require great interviewing skills from the triage nurse.

THMCC: How would you recommend a nurse handle an after-hours caller who demands antibiotics and who has not been seen or refuses to be seen?
Dr. Seidel: It is generally bad medical care to prescribe antibiotics without a thorough examination. Taking even a single dose of antibiotics can prevent certain tests from being accurate, can cause resistance in the patient and can have detrimental and occasionally serious side effects.   That is why we also try to educate people to not give anyone, especially children, leftover antibiotics without a doctor deciding if antibiotic treatment is in that patient’s best interest at that time and which specific antibiotic would be appropriate.

THMCC: After years of being involved in pediatric triage, what is the most common symptom in pediatric after-hours triage and has it changed over the years?
Dr. Seidel: I believe that viral infections are the cause of most sick visits and likely most phone calls. Snotty, runny noses and coughs along with vomiting and diarrhea are the bread and butter (excuse the pun) of pediatrics and that hasn’t changed.

THMCC: Do you see pediatric telephone triage going in any particular direction? As people get more digitally oriented, do you feel that triage will change as well?
Dr. Seidel: It would not surprise me to see a recorded Skype type encounter where the nurse would see the caller and patient


Dr. Jack Seidel is Pediatric Medical Director at Medical City Children’s, Chief of Pediatrics at UT Southwestern University Hospitals and Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at UT Southwestern Medical Center. He is in practice in Dallas, TX.

By |August 7, 2014|Blog, Telephone Triage|Comments Off on Dr. Jack Seidel on Pediatric Telephone Triage