ROCKPORT, Maine — Pen Bay Healthcare, the umbrella organization that includes Pen Bay Medical Center and several other organizations providing health care services in midcoast Maine, has selected a new leader.

The health care organization on Thursday evening announced its new chief executive officer will be Wade C. Johnson, who has 19 years of experience in health care and business, most recently as CEO at Weiser Memorial Hospital in Idaho.

“We are confident we have chosen the right person for the job,” said Dr. Joel Lafleur, chair of the Pen Bay Healthcare Board of Trustees. “Wade Johnson brings a wealth of experience in both business and health care that will be invaluable to the Pen Bay community.”

As CEO of the Weiser, Idaho, hospital, Johnson “made year-over-year improvements on all hospital-wide quality indicators, including patient safety,” stated a press release from the hospital. “Johnson also improved hospital finances in just one year and increased patient satisfaction scores from the 59th percentile to the 90th percentile.”

Johnson will replace Roy Hitchings, who served Pen Bay for more than 13 years as CEO. Hitchings announced his retirement last April and will leave Pen Bay in February 2012.

“I am driven by quality and by putting the patient first in all we do,”Johnson said it the Pen Bay press release. “I also feel a very strong obligation to employees, their satisfaction, and building organizational pride. I actively seek out their input and engagement in all processes and champion efforts for employee growth and development.”

Johnson, his wife and their four children will relocate to the area in February.

Pen Bay Healthcare is a not-for-profit organization that includes Pen Bay Medical Center, Pen Bay Physicians & Associates, Kno-Wal-Lin Home Care and Hospice, Quarry Hill Retirement Community and the Knox Center for Long Term Care.

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