York General Partnering with the Community
Have you met Jim Ulrich, CEO of York General? As the largest employer in the county, York General employees around 500 people while providing critical healthcare services to our region. Jim has been in York for eight months but is already making a major impact. He has joined the Board of York County Development Corporation and believes in the importance of being “at the table” to play a role in economic development. In his words, he is here to “help to craft the solution”, whatever the challenge may be.
Recently, he sat down with us for an interview. His answers to our questions provide a glimpse into the valuable and symbiotic relationship between York and the hospital.
You are new to the area. Where were you prior to moving to York County?
I lived in a more rural area of Nebraska – McCook. The town is similar in size to York and I was the CEO of the hospital, working there for a total of sixteen years.
Why did you join the Board for York County Development Corporation?
While in McCook, I was on the Board of their economic development organization, MEDC, and chaired several committees. When moving to York, I wanted to apply the lessons I learned and experiences I had to benefit our community, here.
Volunteering and investing in the community is critical to our mission at York General, and my personal belief system. I know that we must grow together. We should be at the table, helping to solve challenges being faced by the community because what happens in York, impacts York General and what happens at the hospital, impacts the county.
What services does York General provide to the community?
We are a regional hospital, providing health care through all stages of life. When new life is brought into the world, our physicians and staff are here to provide care. As people grow, we provide preventative care services, diagnostics and can even handle many surgeries in town. Our capacities have grown so that we also offer oncology services and can give patients chemotherapy here in town, where they have the benefit of family support. As the community ages, we also offer nursing home and assisted living care, along with in-home care. York General can also bring specialists to town for appointments, if that physician is not practicing here full-time. From birth to senior services, we provide most of what a community member could ever need.
How can York General help the community at-large?
We can share our time, talent and treasure. We are going to continue to enhance our involvement in the community to do so because this is key to our overall strategy. As for time, we volunteer in the community, with myself and two other senior managers on the board of the YCDC, but we can and would like to do more as an organization. Additionally, York General is not afraid to step up with kick-start money as needed. For example, if we need to contribute financially to help housing projects get off the ground, we can look at doing so. That is an investment that will pay dividends to us in the future as new families move to town who will eventually need medical services.
How would you describe York General’s relationship with York?
We view our relationship with York as a symbiotic one. We need each other. Just like the community needs strong medical services to thrive, we need a strong community to continue growing. This ensures that we have the dollars necessary to continue investing in additional staff and resources.
What is your biggest challenge today?
To continue growing, we need to recruit more doctors and medical staff. Sometimes this requires recruiting physicians from outside of the area and they need house to move into. We recruit employees who are excited to move here but without enough housing options, they either have to commute or we lose them. York County Development Corporation understands this challenge and it is something we are all working to solve together.
YCDC and York General: Partners in Growth
Community development starts and ends with relationships. At York County Development Corporation, we understand that we must meet business owners and community members where they are, get a feel for the challenges they are facing and then work to create solutions. In its own way, York General is doing the same. As a healthcare provider, their service offerings are based on our needs as a community. They meet us where we are on a daily basis and create solutions as necessary. As their CEO, Jim understands this and is committed to working with the YCDC so that we can solve challenges, provide solutions and make our community even better. We are pleased to have such a committed partner and look forward to continuing to work with York General for the betterment of our town and county.
York, NE 68467