October 6, 2014
Muleshoe, Texas (October 6, 2014) – William “Bill” Buck was named interim administrator of Muleshoe Area Medical Center (MAMC) during the regular meeting of the Muleshoe Area Hospital District (MAHD) October 7.
Buck brings over 35 years of healthcare experience to Muleshoe, including almost 25 years as chief executive officer of hospitals ranging in size from 14 to 353 beds. His career has taken him to facilities located in Mississippi, Wyoming, Washington, Arizona, Florida, Louisiana and Texas.
“Although I’ve worked in several larger facilities, I really enjoy working with smaller hospitals and communities,” said Buck. “I know how important small hospitals are to the communities they serve and look forwarding to working with the staff of MAHD to enhance quality of care provided, and re-build community trust in our capabilities.”
“We are pleased to have someone of Bill’s caliber, experience and commitment to serve as our interim administrator,” said Allen Smyer, MAHD board chair, following MAHD board approval of Buck’s appointment.
Buck was recruited to Muleshoe by Preferred Management Corporation, a Shawnee, Oklahoma based operator of Critical Access Hospitals. The MAHD hired Preferred to provider interim management services to the hospital after the resignation of David Burke. Including MAHD, Preferred operates one small community hospital in Oklahoma and nine in Texas. Included on this list is Parmer Medical Center, 30 miles north of Muleshoe, where Preferred has provided management services for almost 25 years.
Buck received his undergraduate degree in accounting and finance from San Angelo State University, San Angelo, Texas, and his graduate degree in health administration from Trinity University, San Antonio, Texas. He lives with his wife in McKinney, Texas, but will be in Muleshoe full-time, typically traveling to McKinney every other weekend. “My wife, who is a speech pathologist, also plans to periodically visit Muleshoe as soon as I get settled here,” reported Buck.
“Bill likes to work as an interim administrator,” noted Mike Easley, chief operating officer of Preferred, “and is very skilled at identify and evaluating problems, and working with local staff to develop and implement solutions. We know that he will be a good fit with the hospital and community, and are glad he was available to take on this assignment.”
“Please call me Bill,” said Buck during a meeting of the hospital department managers. “I have an open door policy, and encourage each of you to bring your needs and concerns to me, so we can discuss how to best improve services,” he continued during an open discussion regarding the issues facing the hospital.
Staff expressed concerns that community perception of the hospital and employee morale have declined over the last year. These items will be high on Buck’s priority list as he meets individually with hospital staff and providers over the next few weeks.
“The healthcare environment presents us with new challenges every day,” said Andy Freeman, president of Preferred. “Everyone on the hospital staff plays a role on the team, and everyone has to play their role well if these challenges are to be overcome,” he continued.
“The board appreciates the efforts of the Preferred team,” said Smyer. “In a very short period of time, they have helped to identify some of the key needs of our hospital and we look forward to working with them to develop and implement plans to address those concerns.”
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