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Thomas Jefferson University and Jefferson Health’s board of trustees have announced that Joseph G. Cacchione, MD, will be the organization’s new CEO, effective Sept. 6.

Dr. Cacchione comes from Ascension, one of the largest nonprofit healthcare systems in the U.S., where he has served as an integral leader since 2017.

Most recently, Dr. Cacchione served as executive vice president, Clinical and Network Services (CNS) for Ascension, a $28 billion organization with 165,000 employees across 145 hospitals and over 2,600 care sites in 19 states and the District of Columbia. Previously, he served as CEO of Ascension Michigan with 15 hospitals and 22,000 employees.

Jefferson Board of Trustees Chair Patricia D. Wellenbach said the board was focused on finding a leader who would be committed to Jefferson Health’s mission of improving lives by prioritizing innovation, partnerships, and reducing racial, ethnic, health and socioeconomic disparities.

“With Dr. Cacchione, we’ve found the visionary and operational leader we need to reach new heights in healthcare, research and higher education,” Wellenbach said. “His experience successfully managing large, complex organizations while also demonstrating thoughtful, inclusive leadership, leaves no doubt in my mind that he is the best person to take Jefferson into the future.”

As a lifelong advocate for clinical quality and patient experience, Dr. Cacchione has an impressive record of identifying high-impact opportunities to best meet the needs of patients and communities, and for designing strategies to provide better care while enabling growth consistent with an organization’s core mission. His detailed understanding of the delivery of clinical services has enabled him to collaborate and implement innovative approaches that improve efficiency with sensitivity to their impact on clinical quality, caregiver engagement and patient experience.

“I am honored to be the next CEO of Jefferson Health and Thomas Jefferson University,” Dr. Cacchione said.  “Jefferson has long served as a national model for excellence in care delivery, higher education, discovery and innovation. I look forward to working together with the dedicated Jefferson team to continue the remarkable work they have done around creating one of the nation’s most respected healthcare organizations and distinctive universities.”

As Jefferson CEO, Dr. Cacchione will continue to advance the enterprise’s growth strategy. Dr. Cacchione will be working with his direct reports, Jefferson Health President Bruce A. Meyer, MD, MBA, and Thomas Jefferson University President Mark L. Tykocinski, MD, to further shape the future of healthcare, research and professions-focused education on a national and international stage.

Emeritus Board Trustee H. Richard Haverstick, Jr. has served as interim CEO and president of Thomas Jefferson University and interim CEO of Jefferson Health since Jan. 1, 2022, while Jefferson’s board embarked on a national search for a permanent CEO. Haverstick will work with Dr. Cacchione to ensure a smooth transition as he assumes his new role.

Before his time at Ascension, Dr. Cacchione spent eight years at the Cleveland Clinic, a leading academic medical center that integrates clinical and hospital care with research and education, where he played a major enterprise role in business development while also serving as chairman of Operations and Strategy for its Heart and Vascular Institute. Before that, he served as executive vice president and chief of quality and operations at Saint Vincent’s Health System in Erie, Pa., where he oversaw the development of several service lines, including orthopedics, oncology, neuroscience and cardiovascular.

Dr. Cacchione spent the first 20 years of his professional career as a private practice cardiologist and large private physician practice executive. He earned his MD from Hahnemann University and his BS degree from Gannon University. Dr. Cacchione completed his internship and residency in internal medicine at Case Western Reserve University. He also completed his residency in cardiology at the University of Rochester (Rochester, NY) and served as a Cardiac Research and Interventional Fellow at Case Western Reserve University.

Dr. Cacchione is board certified in internal medicine, cardiovascular disease and interventional cardiology and has been recognized many times for his contributions to his field and the prestigious institutions he has served. He also has held numerous leadership roles on a national level and in Pennsylvania for the American College of Cardiology and has served on national and community-based administrative health committees.

He has authored and co-authored scholarly papers and presented at national conferences and meetings on healthcare systems, new paradigms in healthcare, cardiology and cardiovascular disease and healthcare administration. He holds active medical licenses in Ohio, New York and Pennsylvania.