Health care executive to serve as interim chief at ARRMC

L. Joe Austin will step in as hospital CEO after Mick Zdeblick’s departure in January.

Joe AustinWith the recently announced departure of Mick Zdeblick, CEO at Asante Rogue Regional, Asante has appointed an interim chief executive. L. Joe Austin, FACHE, a recently retired hospital executive, will assume all of Zdeblick’s responsibilities at ARRMC beginning the first week of January.

Austin will visit Medford the week of Dec. 12 to meet with Asante’s executive team and many of the leaders who will report to him. During this time, we’ll provide an overview of operations at ARRMC and an update on the pavilion project.

Austin is a former hospital president and CEO who served for the past three years at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital, a 691-bed teaching hospital in Albany, Georgia. The hospital serves as the regional referral center for cardiac, oncology, neuroscience and gastrointestinal services, as well as serving as one of only six perinatal centers in the state of Georgia.

During his tenure, Austin championed efforts to achieve Level 2 trauma certification and navigated COVID-19 in a city recognized as having the world’s third-highest COVID infection rate per capita in April 2020.

Prior to his role as CEO, Austin was executive vice president and chief operating officer for Phoebe Health System for 10 years. In that role he directed capital projects that included a new 76-bed hospital campus, a freestanding GI center and an 18-bed inpatient hospice facility.

In both his hospital and health system roles, Austin supported several initiatives to decrease patient harm events, improve clinical and operational performance, and achieve record financial results.

Austin has been a health care leader for 43 years. He is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives and earned his master’s in business administration from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa.

He’ll be working at Asante Rogue Regional for approximately six to nine months before returning to Georgia.

Tags: arrmc, interim CEO, Joe Austin, Mick Zdeblick
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