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October 16, 2023 / 2023 Power 25 Health Care

2023 Power 25 Health Care: Christopher M. O’Connor

Since taking over as CEO of the Yale New Haven Health system, Christopher O’Connor has been overseeing its expansion efforts.

The system reported $6.1 billion in net revenue in fiscal year 2022, and it includes Yale New Haven Hospital, Bridgeport Hospital, Greenwich Hospital, Lawrence + Memorial Hospital in New London, and Westerly Hospital in Rhode Island.

O’Connor has been involved in the system’s efforts to take over three hospitals currently run by Prospect Medical Holdings, including Waterbury, Manchester Memorial and Rockville General hospitals.

The plan is currently being considered by state officials through the Office of Health Strategy’s certificate of need process, which evaluates the impact of hospital consolidation. O’Connor has submitted testimony in favor of the deal, asserting that the health system would help revitalize the financially troubled hospitals.

O’Connor also recently announced Yale New Haven Health’s purchase of Connecticut-based PhysicianOne Urgent Care, which has 27 locations, including six in Massachusetts and three in New York.

O’Connor has a lengthy background in health care. Before becoming CEO with the health system, he had several key roles, such as president, executive vice president and chief operating officer. O’Connor previously was president and CEO of the Hospital of St. Raphael.

Yale New Haven Hospital acquired the Hospital of St. Raphael in 2012 to form one New Haven-based hospital with two campuses. O’Connor helped bring the two hospitals together. He also played key roles in the affiliation with Lawrence + Memorial Hospital in 2016, and Bridgeport Hospital’s acquisition of Milford Hospital in 2019.

In August 2022, Yale New Haven Hospital broke ground on an $838 million, 505,000-square-foot project that includes building a new neurosciences center on the St. Raphael campus.

When he took over the job, O’Connor said his priorities would be to improve patient care, ensure the system’s financial stability, attract talent, and build upon partnerships with the Yale School of Medicine and Yale University. O’Connor currently leads an organization with more than 29,000 employees.

He’s also had to deal with financial issues. About a year ago, Yale New Haven Health cut 155 management-level positions that resulted in 72 layoffs as the health system reported a $234 million operating loss in fiscal 2022.

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