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Vidant Medical Center selected as 2019-2020 Employer of Excellence by AAPA’s Center for Healthcare Leadership and Management

June 07, 2019 posted by Communications

Greenville, N.C. – Vidant Medical Center (VMC) was selected as one of the American Academy of PAs’ (AAPA) Center for Healthcare Leadership and Management’s (CHLM) winners of the 2019-2020 Employer of Excellence Awards. The award program is designed to showcase organizations that implemented practices that create positive work environments for PAs (physician assistants) and encourage collaborative provider teams. The program is the first and only PA-specific award program available to organizations.

“We are honored and grateful to receive this award,” said Chris Norman, MS, PA-C, assistant director, advanced clinical practice, VMC. “This recognition demonstrates the organization’s commitment to making VMC a great place to work for our invaluable PAs.”

To determine the criteria for recognition, CHLM partnered with HealthStream, a leading provider of workforce, patient experience and provider solutions for the health care industry, to gain an understanding of what PAs value in their place of employment. Based on the survey findings, criteria for the Employer of Excellence Awards focuses on the following five drivers:

  1. Establishing a positive and supportive PA work environment.
  2. Providing opportunities for PAs to provide meaningful input that leads to positive organizational change.
  3. Keeping PAs informed about organizational activity and decisions.
  4. Involving PAs in leadership efforts to improve the quality of patient care.
  5. Creating processes for effective conflict management.

“We are so pleased to recognize the amazing accomplishments of this year’s Employer of Excellence winners. Their progressive work to support PAs should serve as an inspiration and model for all PA employers,” said Jennifer Broderick, managing director of CHLM. “Recognizing the value that PAs bring to both their employers and their patients is the goal of this award and we were so impressed with all of this year’s winners.”

VMC is dedicated to providing a culture where PAs and Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN) are highly engaged and an integral part of the healthcare team. This begins with who we hire and extends with continuing education, medical staff committee involvement and leadership opportunities.

“It is truly an honor that the AAPA’s CHLM has recognized VMC in this way,” said Tracy Eskra, MD, MBA, CPE, vice president, medical affairs operations and efficiencies, VMC. “I am proud of the effort that has been put forth to establish this foundation of optimal team patient care and I am excited for the future.”

Each awardee will be showcased as a top place to work for PAs, which will enhance recruitment of highly-qualified PAs, increase retention rates, and showcase the awardees as pioneers in the health care industry. Awardees will retain their designation as an Employer of Excellence for two years and then must re-apply to maintain the designation.

For more information visit

Photo caption (top right): From left, Christopher C. Norman, MS, PA-C, assistant director, advanced clinical practice; Sharona Johnson, PhD, FNP-BC, director, advanced clinical practice; Tracy Eskra, MD, MBA, CPE, vice president, medical affairs operations and efficiencies; Sarah Santiago, MC, PA-C, trauma services; and Eric Meyer, MS, PA-C, team lead, palliative care, pose with the Employer of Excellence Award at a ceremony on May 18, 2019, in Denver, Colorado.

Media contact:  Brian Wudkwych, 252-214-0782 or  


About Vidant Health
Vidant Health is a mission-driven, 1,712-bed health system that annually serves a region of more than 1.4 million people in 29 eastern North Carolina counties. The not-for-profit system is made up of more than 14,000 team members, nine hospitals, home health, hospice, wellness centers, and Vidant Medical Group, a multi-specialty physician and provider group with more than 500 providers in more than 100 practice sites in eastern North Carolina. Vidant is affiliated with The Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University. As a major resource for health services and education, Vidant’s mission is to improve the health and well-being of eastern North Carolina. For more information, visit

About AAPA’s Center for Healthcare Leadership and Management (CHLM)
CHLM works directly with institutions to maximize team-based utilization and optimize PA practice settings. CHLM provides expertise, analytics, and industry best practices to help their clients evaluate organizational alternatives designed to improve the effectiveness of their provider workforce. For more information, visit  

About the American Academy of PAs
The American Academy of PAs (AAPA) is the national membership organization for all PAs. PAs are medical professionals who diagnose illness, develop and manage treatment plans, prescribe medications, and often serve as a patient’s principal healthcare provider. Learn more about the profession at

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