CEO’s bottom line: ‘Being part of changing someone’s life’

Duane Scholer

On June 6, Duane Scholer took the helm as chief executive officer of Arizona Orthopedic Surgical Hospital. The facility, which is located at 2905 W. Warner Road, serves those who live in south Tempe and west Chandler as well as a much broader, Valley-wide range of patients.

Like many people who have recently started a new job, Scholer came to his new position with both short- and long-term goals in mind. He knows that, with over two decades working in finance and operations under his belt, he is bringing both the knowledge and the experience to the job that is necessary for the hospital to continue running smoothly.

But Scholer also understands that a hospital is much more than a business; it’s a place where people come every day to have surgical procedures performed that will help improve both their health and their lives. And, he knows that these patients are much more than just names on charts—they are someone’s parent, spouse, child or close friend.

Thus Scholer says his number one goal as CEO is to make sure the hospital continues to be a facility that is well-known for offering top quality patient care that exceeds the expectations of everyone involved—especially the patient.

“I am a fervent believer in patient-focused care and providing quality care in a comfortable environment,” he said.

“I want us to treat every patient like we would treat one of our own loved ones.”

Scholer, who led the opening of the 106-bed Hualapai Mountain Medical Center in Kingman, and who served as chief financial officer of three acute care hospitals in New Mexico and Nevada, said he was attracted to the hospital’s dedication of providing surgical services in a safe and comfortable atmosphere.

Patients can sense the welcoming environment of the hospital the second they walk through the door, he said.

“It’s in the culture of both the hospital and the employees who work here, who greet everyone  who comes in with a smile and a hello, and the way they introduce themselves and offer assistance,” he said.

“The last place anyone wants to be is in a hospital, so the staff goes to great lengths to explain what will happen both during surgery and after surgery, as well as explaining if the person will be with us overnight or in the outpatient PACU recovery unit.

“The staff will go over things until the patients are comfortable and all of their concerns are alleviated.”

Bradley Hall, a south Tempe resident, has worked at Arizona Orthopedic Surgical Hospital for almost four years.

In his role as an inpatient/outpatient physical therapy assistant, Hall helps the physical therapists who are working with the patients who are involved with inpatient surgical procedures.

Hall said the patient-centered care offered at the hospital as well as working with a group of outstanding co-workers and patients helps make the hospital “a great place to work.”

“Along the way you have the chance to meet people and make a real impact on their lives,” he said.

“The highlight for me is knowing someone is in need and you can offer health care, but really in the process also share hope and optimism for the future. Being a part of changing someone’s life is the bottom line of what we do.”