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Updated: October 5, 2020 2020 Power 25 — Health Care

12. James Shmerling

James Shmerling arrived at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center in late 2015, vowing to take calculated risks necessary to keep the state’s only free-standing pediatric hospital self-sufficient.

James Shmerling, CEO, Connecticut Children’s Medical Center

Thus far the CEO has made good on his pledge. Under his leadership, Connecticut Children’s overall financial margin has bested the statewide median for four years running.

It will be tougher to stay in the black this year, given the toll COVID-19 has taken on many hospitals, but even amid the uncertainty, Shmerling greenlit a joint venture with a national consulting firm that aims to provide revenue-cycle services to fellow children’s hospitals around the country.

Connecticut Children’s has also launched an innovation center to foster its own clinicians’ commercial ideas and to collaborate with industry to pilot new healthcare technologies toward clinical trials.

Shmerling also oversaw a relocation of about 400 non-clinical employees to the Candy Cane building in downtown Hartford in 2017, a move that freed up clinical space at the hospital’s main campus and saved money.

The Nashville native is well-known in the industry, having held management roles at children’s hospitals in five states since 1979. He also chaired the board of the national Children’s Hospital Association in 2014.

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