In 2006 in conjunction with Women's Health Month, the idea was to tip our hat to 10 women making a difference in the delivery of healthcare on a local, national and international basis.
In the first couple of years, the very deserving honorees were almost exclusively clinical practitioners or hospital-based administrators. Considering the industry's complexity, however, we've come to recognize that it truly takes a village to deliver safe, effective healthcare. For that reason, we've expanded our worldview over the past few years to include professionals working in healthcare service sectors including accounting, healthcare law, trade organizations and consulting firms.
What has not changed from the very beginning, though, is the passion each of these highly accomplished women brings to her work. We have noticed a theme sometimes emerges in a given year. In 2010, education seems to play a starring role. Perhaps because of the uncertainty tied to healthcare reform, there exists an intense desire for information and for leadership with the necessary skill sets to move the healthcare industry forward. Whether it be teaching the next generation of healthcare providers, explaining complex regulatory statutes to clients, guiding patients through a growing list of options or reaching out to a community to share information, the women being honored this year are first and foremost great communicators.
Although it is always difficult to narrow down the long list of nominees, the very process reminds us of Nashville's unique position as a healthcare capital. That entrepreneurial spirit engenders a willingness to look at issues from a different perspective … more and more often, a woman's perspective. With intelligence, humor, common sense and a dash of women's intuition, the Class of 2010 is truly improving the way we deliver healthcare in Nashville and far beyond.