July 16, 2008

St. Anthony Chooses Chief Operating Officer: Veteran Nurse and Administrator to Run Franciscan Hospital

By Susan Schell, The Peninsula Gateway, Gig Harbor, Wash.

Jul. 9--Carole Peet is fairly new in town, but she is busy preparing to step into the spotlight as the chief operating officer at St. Anthony Hospital.

Peet moved to Gig Harbor from Crescent City, Calif., five weeks ago to take the helm of the 80-bed Franciscan Health System hospital set to open in February.

"This is a challenge one doesn't get very often in a career," Peet said. "Gig Harbor is similar to other communities I've worked in."

Peet's background in the health care industry is extensive. She served as chief operating officer and assistant administrator for patient care services at Sutter Coast Hospital, a 59-bed community hospital in Crescent City, where she oversaw all clinical operations for nearly seven years.

"That prepared me to take on this exciting opportunity," she said. "I've been in health care for about 28 years. I am a nurse and have functioned in a variety of staff nursing and leadership roles."

Those roles include serving as director of cardiac and intensive care services; director of medical and surgical services; director of surgical and cardiac short stay and pre-admission testing; and director of gastroenterology and endoscopy centers at hospitals in Phoenix, Ariz., and Albuquerque, N.M. She has master's degrees in nursing and business administration.

Peet said her main order of business at St. Anthony will be to get the staff operational.

"My job is to find the staff and train them," she said. "I have to make sure that, when we open our doors, we have all the key people in place to provide outstanding service. It has been very much a team effort. Everyone tried to look at it from a patient's perspective."

Peet said it's that view that impressed her as one of the most outstanding qualities she sees in the new hospital.

"The hospital looks out on a healing garden," she said. "And it uses color and light to provide a healing atmosphere. Clinically, enough space will be provided for patients and families. There will be enough room for people to stay with the patients."

Another big attraction for Peet was the city itself: She said she's drawn to smaller communities and Gig Harbor reminded her of Camden, Maine.

"When you drive into Gig Harbor, it looks like Camden," she said. "I'm very comfortable here. It fits with who I am and my family is."

Reach reporter Susan Schell at 253-853-9240 or by e-mail at [email protected]


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