Shake-up occurs in top ranks at Broward Health as two leaders leave

The taxpayer-funded Broward Health Medical Center in Fort Lauderdale has had a shake-up in top management.

The hospital’s chief executive officer and its chief medical officer left abruptly recently. An email about the management changes went out to employees.

In a written statement,  Lineth Fernandez, a hospital spokeswoman, said the two top leaders had “transitioned out of their roles.”

Aurelio Fernandez, the retired former president and CEO of Memorial Healthcare System has become the interim CEO. The written statement says Broward Health will conduct a national search to find a new CEO.

CEO Heather Havericak had been chief executive officer of Broward Health Medical Center since August 2019. She had been with the health system since 2006 and held several leadership positions at the hospital, including interim CEO, COO and Assistant Vice President Strategic and Administrative Services.

Joshua Lenchus, the chief medical officer, had been with the hospital since 2018 and is currently president and chair of the Florida Medical Association. Lenchus had been a key figure in steering the hospital through the coronavirus pandemic.

Broward Health Board of Commissioner member Nancy Gregoire said both executives left on good terms. “Sometimes people want to move on. Sometimes it’s best for everyone for them to move on,” she said.

Jennifer Smith, vice president of corporate communications, said, “This is a strategic move by the organization to better position Broward Health for the future.”

She added the two executives left the district on June 29, and Fernandez started on July 5.

“He made a great first impression, and there are so many great things happening for the system,” Smith said.

Gregoire said Broward Health has come a long way since it was embroiled in high turnover on the board and accusations of management misconduct more than five years ago. “I would not stay on the board if we were not moving in a positive direction,” she said.

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