Viator leaves EKL for new post

Earl K. Long Medical Center administrator Kathy Viator has moved to a new job with the LSU division that oversees state public hospitals.

Viator, who has her doctoral degree in nursing, will work with the LSU Health Care Services Division’s health-care effectiveness team.

In the new job, Viator will be working with electronic medical records as part of efforts to use them to improve health outcomes for patients.

LSU System assistant vice president for health care and medical education Roxane Townsend will serve as the interim chief executive officer at Earl K. Long Hospital, known as EKL.

Townsend also is interim chief executive officer of LSU’s Health Care Services Division and interim CEO of LSU’s hospital in New Orleans.

Viator has been on EKL’s executive leadership team since July 2005 when she was named chief operating officer. She became acting CEO in July 2007 and then CEO in September 2008.

Viator’s move comes as LSU prepares to close EKL, located on Airline Highway in north Baton Rouge, by late 2013.

Inpatient hospital operations and medical education programs are scheduled to move to Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center off Essen Lane in south Baton Rouge.

Transition planning is ongoing.

LSU Health Care Services Division spokesman Marvin McGraw said Tuesday that other members of the leadership team at the hospital will remain intact and actually run day-to-day operations.

Kim Sangari is the chief operating officer of EKL; Mike Sanders, director of ancillary services; Sonya Willis, director of nursing; Dr. Kevin Reed, medical director; and Amelia Georgetown, human resources director.

McGraw said Lisa Augustus will assume the job of the hospital’s chief financial officer effective Oct. 1.

Chad Thompson, chief finance officer of Lallie Kemp Medical Center in Independence, has also been serving as interim CFO.