Transitions can sometimes be difficult. It’s always hard to say farewell to a friend and colleague who has shared a dedication to a mission and contributed deeply to building an organizational foundation. But the smile on Diane Murray’s face over these past few weeks as she approaches retirement has made it clear she is quite ready to explore what’s next! While we are going to miss her around here, we will be reminded on a daily basis how her time at the Annex has strengthened our ability to fulfill our mission in a myriad of ways.
In 2010, we were grappling with what the Affordable Care Act meant for small non-profit specialty clinics like the Annex Teen Clinic. It appeared that more of our patient’s families would be covered by some type of health insurance and that relationships with payers would be crucial to our success. More worrisome, the 5 by 8 ledger cards we recorded patient account information on were going to have to be replaced by electronic practice management software and health records. For our first 40 years, the Annex had effectively operated outside of the traditional health care system and we had no contracts with insurance companies much less the capacity to submit claims. It was clear we had some work to do but lacked the expertise and capacity to even know where to begin. Oy!
Enter Diane Murray! I knew this relationship was going to work when our first phone conversation was mostly about dogs. Fortunately, we did manage to get an interview scheduled as well. What a fortuitous connection. Diane brought to the Annex years of experience (who’s counting) managing clinics and implementing electronic practice management and health record systems. She knew how to get the contracts we needed. With the help of a talented staff, she built a business office from scratch for the Annex. On top of that, she helped manage the design and renovation of our new building.
In the past seven years, Diane and her team have built a solid business foundation for the Annex while maintaining incredibly high standards for quality and service. We’ve learned a great deal about how to expand the reach of our clinical services through our “Clinic in a Box” initiative. And we are seeing a steady increase in the demand for our clinical services.
Thanks for everything you’ve done for the Annex, Diane! You are leaving us in a very good place Oh, and it’s been a lot of fun!