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  • Lawrence Hawkins

News from Imperial

Dear fellow nobles,

At the January 2019 Leadership Conference of Shriners Hospitals for Children, a high-level vision for the hospital system in 2035 began to emerge. It was decided that quality would govern all care decisions, delivery of care models would be evaluated in all facilities, and new methods of reaching more kids in more places would be fully investigated. As healthcare has undergone incredible changes, so too must Shriners Hospitals for Children.

The vision of establishing 1-4 Centers of Excellence was established along with a goal of 200+ access points to Shriners care throughout the United States. Since that time, many changes have taken place within our system. Twin Cities, Tampa, Boston, and Cincinnati are all reimagining their delivery of care and transforming to better serve the pediatric specialty needs of our patients in the future.

With quality as the primary driver for all future decisions, criteria were established for evaluating potential Centers of Excellence throughout the United States. Many steps, including short term and intermediate transitions will be necessary to arrive at that goal of establishing these premier pediatric care facilities. Since our Imperial Session in July, Houston and Galveston, utilizing a newly established governance model, along with the Joint Boards voted to merge their facilities into one by late 2020.

Most recently, the Joint Boards have approved the Beta Center of Excellence Business Plan for SHC — Northern California. This decision begins the process of necessary investment and changes needed to begin the journey of potentially becoming a Center of Excellence.

All of these decisions reflect system wide opportunities, and regardless of geography, should be viewed as system initiatives that benefit the continuation of our incredible mission at Shriners Hospitals for Children. As we journey toward our next 100 years, working together we can take our system beyond where it has ever been before as we re-reshape and transform pediatric specialty care for future generations.

Yours in the faith,


Jeffrey L. Sowder

Imperial Potentate, Shriners International

Chairman, Board of Directors, Shriners Hospitals for Children


Jerry G. Gantt

Chairman, Board of Trustees, Shriners Hospitals for Children

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