Lee Domanico: The CEO gets the patient perspective, firsthand

Lee Domanico: The CEO gets the patient perspective, firsthand

Few people are as knowledgeable about hospital care and management as Lee Domanico. He spent 35 years as a hospital CEO and 12 years leading MarinHealth (2008-2020). Here, Lee spearheaded the transformation of a small community hospital into a magnet for high-quality care and now, the hub of MarinHealth, an exceptional healthcare enterprise encompassing all of the North Bay.

At 1:30 am on January 2, 2020, Lee was jolted awake by excruciating back pain. He had been managing his chronic back issues under the careful supervision of spine surgeon Dr. Brian Su, but this new pain was simply unbearable. Loathe to call an ambulance for fear of being taken somewhere other than MarinHealth Medical Center, Lee asked his wife to drive him to the “healing place” he trusts the most.

Lee was hospitalized and received IV pain medication. But the pain persisted, so Dr. Su scheduled him for surgery to repair a herniated disc. The results were amazing—and immediate. “When I awoke, I had no back pain,” Lee marvels. “Absolutely none!”

Asked about his experience as an inpatient at MarinHealth Medical Center, Lee beams with pride. “Healthcare is a team sport,” he asserts. “I saw it in action. Every single person, from the doctors, nurses, and physical therapists to the environmental and dietary services folks, was so professional, compassionate, and exceptional. I’ve always been proud of our organization so I’m not surprised, but to see it up close and personal was another thing entirely. Now, as I retire, I’m so gratified to have been here from day one and see our plans for the new Oak Pavilion come to fruition. Our team has always been fantastic and now our facilities are as good as they are.”

This story was first published in August, 2020.