Chutes & Ladders—CVS Health adds new chief health equity officer; former CMMI director joins CareBridge Health

Welcome to this week's Chutes & Ladders, our roundup of hirings, firings and retirings throughout the industry. Please submit the good news—or the bad—from your shop, and we will feature it here at the end of each week.

CVS Health

CVS Health's Joneigh Khaldun
Joneigh Khaldun, M.D.
(CVS Health)

Joneigh Khaldun, M.D., has stepped on board at CVS Health as its new vice president and chief health equity officer.

Khaldun was recently the chief medical executive for the state of Michigan and chief deputy director for its Department of Health and Human Services. The role put her in charge of the state’s COVID-19 response, although she’s also had a hand in federal efforts as part of the Biden administration’s COVID-19 Health Equity Task Force.

Khaldun also practices emergency medicine part-time at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, is an adjunct professor at the University of Michigan’s School of Public Health and holds a handful of board and committee positions.

Khaldun will report to Kyu Rhee, M.D., executive vice president and chief medical officer at Aetna. In her new role, Khaldun will lead CVS' efforts to drive health equity across the healthcare giant's enterprise.

She and her team will focus on more effectively integrating culturally competent care into the design and development of new population health initiatives, products, services and communications, CVS said. She will also work with partners in the healthcare industry to advance health equity and better reach underserved communities.

CareBridge Health

Brad Smith
(CareBridge Health)

Brad Smith, the former director of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) has taken on the role of executive chairman at CareBridge Health.

Smith’s time at the delivery model testbed had him overseeing value-based healthcare programs across the country, experience CareBridge anticipates will translate well to its own work of taking full risk for members who receive care and community-based services.

Smith’s resume also includes the recent founding of venture capital firm Russell Street Ventures. He was the co-founder and CEO of home-based palliative care provider Aspire Health. The business was sold in 2018 to Anthem, giving him a role as chief operating officer of its multibillion-dollar diversified business group.

Joining Smith at CareBridge will be Brandon Kerns, who was formerly the chief financial officer at Landmark Health and will be taking on the equivalent title at his new employer; Erica David-Park, M.D., as senior vice president of decision support and associate medical director; and Manas Sharma as chief of staff.


Hoda Asmar, M.D.

Hoda Asmar, M.D., has been tapped as the next chief medical officer of Providence, the Washington-based system announced late last week.

She comes from Adventist Health, where, as chief clinical officer, she headed population health initiatives and worked to improve the California provider’s clinical operations, patient engagement and outcomes.

Her resume also includes clinical leadership positions at Baptist Memorial Health Care, Comprehensive Pharmacy Services, Presbyterian Healthcare Services and Michigan’s public health department.

Asmar, whose role became effective Oct. 13, is tasked with engaging physician and clinician leaders to boost provider engagement and development, strategy and system-wide operational optimization. She will also oversee Providence’s pharmacy and laboratory services.


Kim Drumgo

Kim Drumgo is stepping into a newly created chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer title at Geisinger, the organization announced this week.

Drumgo comes to the table with more than 15 years of experience in the diversity and inclusion field, having most recently served as chief diversity officer at Anthem.

Prior to that, she had leadership roles at the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina.

The position will see her tackle new initiatives aimed at implementing diversity, equity and inclusion efforts across the organization and promote the benefits those values can bring to the work environment. She will also provide general thought leadership and strategic direction to the organization.

> Blue Cross Blue Shield Association continued its senior leadership overhaul with two more appointments: Adam Myers, M.D., as senior vice president and chief clinical transformation officer and Christina Fisher as executive vice president and chief financial officer.

> Northwell Health announced that David Battinelli, M.D., will succeed Lawrence G. Smith, M.D., as executive vice president and physician-in-chief. Additionally, Jill Kalman, M.D. was also named senior vice president, chief medical officer and deputy physician-in-chief.

> Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital has brought on Alan Lee as chief operating officer.

> Laguna Health, a digital home recovery company, has appointed Matthew Conboy as vice president of operations and strategy.

> Baptist Medical Center South has tapped Kyle Dorsey as hospital president.

> Availity, a real-time health information network, has added Jim McNary as chief operating officer.

> Central Maine Healthcare will see Steven Littleson become its next CEO and president.

> Western Arizona Regional Medical Center, part of Community Health Systems, reportedly received resignations from CEO Michael Stenger and Chief Nursing Officer Emily Stevens.

> Sunrise Children’s Hospital, part of HCA Healthcare, has appointed Allie Breckenridge as chief operating officer.

> Consonance Capital Partners, a healthcare private equity firm, has added former CMMI Chief Medical Officer Hyong Kim, M.D.; Summit Health Executive Chairman Jeffrey Le Benger, M.D.; former HMS Holdings Corp. head Bill Lucia; and former President of Stryker Spine Eric Major to its advisory board.