Sunrise Sessions

Rise and shine with the best in rural health care at our sunrise sessions during the 2021 AHA Rural Health Care Leadership Conference.
Our 2021 sunrise sessions will be announced in October.

Previous Sunrise Sessions

Tuesday, February 4 | 7:00 - 7:50 am


Tap into Innovative Strategies to Drive Performance Improvement

Kirk Soileau, CEO, Natchitoches Regional Medical Center
Matt Walker, PharmD, CEO, William Bee Ririe Hospital
Kristi Martinsen, Hospital State Division Director, Federal Office of Rural Health Policy, HRSA

Rural hospitals across America are taking bold steps within their communities and in partnership with their leadership peers to improve performance. Join this conversation to gain actionable ideas for boosting quality and addressing readmissions and learn how one hospsital has used a multi-pronged technical assistance approach through the development of partnerships, care coordination, and hiring an ER navigator, to become one of the nation’s TOP 100 SafeCare Hospitals. And then discover how a rural hospital CEO uses innovative strategies to leverage a network of other hospital CEOs on performance improvement initiatives and community engagement. Examples of excellence and innovation are in the field—this session will inspire you to launch your own transformation initiatives.


Emotional Intelligence: One of the Highest Indicators of Success in the Workplace

Laurie Cure, PhD, President/CEO, Innovative Connections
Mystie Johnson Foote, MD, MBA, Chief Operating Officer, Cancer Treatment Centers of America, Phoenix

Research says that leaders fail for a variety of familiar reasons. But what accounts for leadership success? What we know is that emotional intelligence (EI) is the #1 predictor of professional and personal excellence with 90% of top performers in organizations having higher levels of EI. Integration of this critical competency is quickly becoming a requirement as a briskly changing environment necessitates skills in self-awareness, trust building, conflict management, listening and empathy. This session will provide attendees with strategies to build EI skills in themselves and their teams and review the example of one rural hospital in which physicians in critical care specialties showed statistically significant improvement in EI at the conclusion of the program.


Do I Need a Digital Strategy? Developing the Right Approach for My Organization

Leslie Marsh, Chief Executive Officer, Lexington Regional Health Center
Marty Fattig, Chief Executive Officer, Nemaha County Hospital
David Schreiner, , President/CEO, Katherine Shaw Bethea (KSB) Hospital
Bruce Brandes, AVIA, General Manager, Digital and Partner Network

Health care disruption is here to stay and as hospital leaders we can leverage digital disruption to accelerate positive change for our organizations. But as leaders we need to understand what the right digital journey is and how to craft that roadmap. This panel will share their experience with the AHA Digital Pulse, a new comparison tool offered free and exclusively to AHA members, powered by AVIA, the leading partner for digital health insights, strategic guidance and consulting services. Panelists will explain how the Pulse has prompted them to act on digital faster, with greater confidence.