Greg Repetti, president of MultiCare Valley and Deaconess hospitals, believes patient and staff safety is of utmost importance.
Repetti, who has more than 30 years of senior leadership experience in health care administration, has served as CEO of MultiCare Valley Hospital since 2014.
Under his leadership, the 123-bed acute-care facility earned the Illinois-based Joint Commission’s Advanced Hip and Knee Gold Seal of Approval in 2018. The Joint Commission provides certification and accreditation for more than 21,000 health care providers nationwide. MultiCare Valley Hospital also became one of 293 hospitals nationwide to receive a perfect five-star rating for patient care from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in 2019.
Repetti assumed a dual role as president of MultiCare Valley and Deaconess hospitals in May, replacing Laureen Driscoll, who became president of MultiCare’s Tacoma General and Allenmore hospitals.
“I’m honored to have been asked to fulfill that role. It’s a big deal,” Repetti said. “I started my career in Spokane 10 years ago as chief operating officer at Deaconess and it’s a little bit of a homecoming. Obviously, I’m very fortunate to have an incredible team.”
Tacoma-based MultiCare Health System, a nonprofit organization, operates eight hospitals and numerous primary, urgent care and specialty clinics in the state.
Repetti believes MutiCare’s Deaconess and Valley hospitals share a similarity: striving to meet patient needs.
“We are trying to make a difference, and I think we are, and it’s exciting to be a part of that,” Repetti said. “I’m still pretty pumped up about where we are going and what we are doing.”
A noble industry
Repetti graduated from high school in Akron, Ohio, and attended Yale University, where he played football and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in biology.
When Repetti was a Yale student, he considered going to medical school. But a discussion with a family friend, who graduated from Ohio State University’s health services administration program, prompted Repetti to consider a career in hospital leadership.
“Health care is a pretty noble industry, in that we’re constantly giving back to the people in our communities,” he said. “So I decided to follow in (his friend’s) footsteps. I got accepted to grad school, and the rest is history, so to speak.”
Repetti obtained a master’s degree in health services administration from Ohio State University in 1982. After graduation, Repetti worked in various administrative roles at the Medical College of Pennsylvania over six years before becoming associate vice president of Paoli (Pennsylvania) Memorial Hospital in 1988.
Repetti accepted a position as vice president of operations at Silver Cross Hospital in Joliet, Illinois, in 1993. He later moved up the ranks to become executive vice president and chief operating officer of the hospital. It was a position he held for more than nine years, leading an effort to reduce operating costs and improve patient satisfaction. The hospital was named to Solucient’s Top 100 Hospitals nationwide in 2005 and 2006.
“That was exciting,” Repetti said. “We were able to do a similar thing at MultiCare Valley Hospital a couple years ago when we became the first hospital in Eastern Washington to get a five-star rating from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. It’s really a recognition for the hard work, effort and the day-to-day dedication of our staff.”
Repetti also has held positions as CEO of Vail Valley Medical Center in Vail, Colorado, and chief operating officer of MultiCare’s Deaconess Hospital and Rockwood Clinic.
Ensuring staff, patient safety
Navigating the coronavirus pandemic has been challenging for staff at MultiCare’s Valley and Deaconess hospitals, Repetti said, adding the staff has met the challenge head on and the hospitals are doing well.
The hospitals, starting at the onset of COVID-19, took vigorous measures to ensure staff and patient safety, Repetti said.
“In the beginning, it was very scary because we didn’t know a lot about the etiology of the disease and we still don’t … I think now we are at a different point. We were very fortunate in the first couple of months here in Spokane because the numbers were low. I think maybe we had more critically ill patients at that time,” Repetti said. “Now, the numbers are higher – as far as the number of positive patients and the number of patients in our hospitals. But, the acuity of the patients as a general rule is a little bit less. There’s fewer patients in the ICU as a percentage.”
Repetti said he’s been collaborating with Spokane County Health Officer Bob Lutz and Providence Health Care on implementing safety measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Repetti also strives to be reassuring and provide guidance while ensuring the safety of more than 2,000 employees amid the pandemic.
“Every time I hear about one of my employees who might get sick, I worry about them. I worry about their well-being. It keeps me up at night, but at the end of the day, it’s what we all in health care signed up to do,” he said. “I work with incredible people – the heroes in our ERs, our ICUs and our floors who are taking care of people.”
A mission of optimism
Repetti wears his heart on his sleeve while meeting patient needs and overseeing day-to-day hospital operations, said Kevin Maloney, spokesman for MultiCare.
“Greg is a very passionate person and definitely likes to get things done, and I think that’s something that I personally admire about his leadership,” Maloney said.
Repetti is inspired by staff at MultiCare’s Valley and Deaconess hospitals, who come to work with an attitude of caring and service.
“I watch all the miracles that our team does every day. We have some of the hardest working people in the world, and they do it with such love and caring there,” he said. “To me, it’s really inspiring.”
Repetti experienced the organization’s care firsthand as a cancer survivor. He was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2013 and was treated at MultiCare Rockwood Clinic.
“Now that I’m seven years post (cancer), it helps put into perspective what’s really important,” Repetti said. “Living every day, giving back and making a difference in peoples’ lives one person, one patient, one interaction at a time is really kind of my core belief.”
In his spare time, Repetti enjoys hiking, biking and spending time with his wife Angie and children Gregory and Brigid.
“My wife and I are very proud parents. I have a son who is going into his senior year at Gonzaga University, and I have a daughter who is going into her junior year at Marquette University in Milwaukee,” Repetti said.
Repetti also enjoys watching Gonzaga Bulldogs and Marquette Golden Eagles basketball games with his family during the winter months.
Focusing on the future
Repetti’s primary mission is to continue improving operations and facilitating growth at MultiCare Valley and Deaconess hospitals.
MultiCare’s Pulse Heart Institute is expanding services in the Northwest this month to continue providing essential care, with the addition of several physicians and staff from Kootenai Heart Clinics Northwest.
“We are bringing on 13 or 14 physicians, advanced practice providers and nurse practitioners, and that’s going to be a big change for us,” Repetti said. “So, we are working hard to get ready to accommodate that both at Deaconess and out in the Valley.”
MultiCare Valley Hospital will be working closely with Rockwood Clinic physicians to expand orthopedic care, Repetti added.
Repetti, in addition to expanding hospital services, aims to continue a personal mission of creating a healthy future for the community.
“My internal mission is to be an example of optimism and happiness, and to make a positive difference in the people I interact with and to be a great husband, father, leader of high moral character,” he said. “I’m a man of faith, and I try to display that in pretty much everything I do.”
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