Dear Members of the Yale Community,
After thirty-three years of exceptional service to Yale, Dr. Paul Genecin will retire from his role as CEO of Yale Health on January 6, 2023. A champion of high-quality, data-driven, patient-centered care, Dr. Genecin has contributed immeasurably to the health and well-being of generations of Yale community members.
In 1989, Dr. Genecin joined Yale Health for a one-year appointment as a primary care internist, but he had such a positive experience working with Yale Health patients that he stayed for a second year and then went on to serve as the chief of the Internal Medicine Department. From there, he began building a strong team of physicians and implementing strategies to improve the quality of patient care, such as increasing the number of highly skilled advanced practice providers and nurses and expanding patient access. Faculty, staff, and students recognized his deep commitment to their health, and his colleagues appreciated his talent for managing medical teams and creating opportunities for enhancing clinical care. In 1997, he was asked to lead Yale Health.
As CEO of Yale Health, Dr. Genecin has focused on clinical quality and launched numerous initiatives to measure and improve patient care. One of his team’s early accomplishments was the introduction of an electronic medical record to Yale Health years before the medical community migrated to Epic, a medical record system used by health care organizations across the country. Data from electronic records enabled the Yale Health team to apply rigorous metrics to ensure that members of our community are receiving high quality and evidence-based care. Yale Health staff have utilized data-driven approaches in a wide range of ways, from identifying quality improvement opportunities in routine services and age-appropriate health screening to optimizing care for those with high-risk conditions such as diabetes and other chronic diseases. In addition, Dr. Genecin has used health data, operational metrics, and patient feedback to make sure Yale Health could grow and expand its services to meet the needs of the Yale community.
Another of Dr. Genecin’s milestones at Yale Health was the creation of a clinical partnership with Yale Medicine to provide comprehensive specialty services. Cultivating a strong inter-organizational relationship has led to increased connectivity between Yale Medicine specialists and Yale Health primary care clinicians. This partnership has offered accessibility as well as clinical excellence to all members of the Yale Health community.
Many of you know the Yale Health Center as the iconic building at 55 Lock Street, but some of you may remember its previous home at 17 Hillhouse Avenue. When it became clear that Yale Health was outgrowing its former facilities, Dr. Genecin worked with other university leaders and colleagues across campus to define the needs of a modern health care facility. Planning Yale Health’s move to its current home was a major undertaking that culminated with the opening of the Yale Health Center in 2010. Now, the Yale community can benefit from a greatly expanded clinic space as well as enhanced services such as radiology and GI endoscopy among many others.
In 2005, the Joint Commission, a health care accreditation organization dedicated to continuous quality improvement, accredited Yale Health as an inpatient and ambulatory clinic, and Yale Health has maintained continuous accreditation since that time. In 2012, the National Committee for Quality Assurance certified Yale Health as a Patient-Centered Medical Home, and soon after, the Joint Commission recognized Yale Health as a Primary Care Medical Home. These milestones demonstrate how Dr. Genecin and the Yale Health staff have stayed focused on optimizing care for our diverse university population over the years. They have worked steadily to take into account patients’ preferences, cultures, values, and beliefs in all medical interactions, striving to engage patients in shared decision-making and coordinating their care across all settings.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Yale Health’s longstanding record for high-quality patient care enabled it to mobilize quickly to provide testing, treatment, and vaccination to the entire Yale community. Its robust safety system was key to its success in establishing infection control procedures. Yale Health staff also found innovative ways to continue non-COVID services, maintaining the organization’s record of clinical excellence using quality metrics as care transitioned to telemedicine.
Even before the pandemic, college campuses around the country were seeing an increased demand for mental health care services. Dr. Genecin has been focused on building an outstanding team of psychiatrists, psychologists, and clinical social workers to meet student mental health care needs. Most recently, he collaborated with colleagues at Yale Health, Yale College, the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and the professional schools to increase access to services within each school. These efforts include the launch of the Yale College Community Care (YC3) pilot, which added eight full-time staff members working within the residential colleges to help students with emotional concerns.
A committed physician and innovative leader, Dr. Genecin leaves his position after ensuring Yale Health is operating at the fore of patient-centered clinical care. I will soon form a search advisory committee and hire a search firm to identify candidates who can build on all that Dr. Genecin and the staff at Yale Health have accomplished. I have asked Dr. Stephanie Spangler, vice provost for health affairs and academic integrity, and John Whelan, vice president for human resources, to advise me in this process.
Please join me in thanking Dr. Genecin for all that he has done to care for the members of our community and in wishing him well on his future ventures.
Chris Argyris Professor of Psychology