By Daniel Casciato

In October, Aristides (Ardy) Pallin was named the new President and Chief Executive Officer of Catholic Health Services (CHS). A ministry of the Archdiocese of Miami, Catholic Health Services is the largest post-acute health care and social services continuum in the southeast United States. Pallin succeeds Joe Catania who announced his retirement earlier this year.

Pallin previously served as Chief Operating Officer for the organization since 2017 and on the board of directors prior to his post as COO for 10 years. He spent his life in South Florida and received both his undergraduate degrees from the University of Miami. Pallin’s professional career has spanned over 30 years in almost every segment and role within the industry. This includes acute care, pediatrics, safety net hospitals, medical groups, and now post-acute care. The roles have included CEO, COO, CIO, and many others.

What attracted him to the position of CEO started with what attracted him to faith based and Catholic healthcare.

“My first experience was at Mercy Hospital where I spent 18 years,” he explains. “The focus on mission was visible and palatable in every aspect of the organization. That is what brought me to serve at CHS. First as a Board member, then as the COO and now as CEO. The CEO role will provide me an opportunity to further the traditions of mission and service that are the core of CHS.”

Some of his current and future plans to serve the changing needs of the residents of South Florida include the impact of the pandemic and severe staffing shortages that is forcing all providers to evaluate the needs of the communities and create innovative plans to serve those needs.

“For CHS there is considerable focus on expanding services at the home including Home Health, Hospice and palliative care,” says Pallin. “The challenges that have existed receiving care at hospitals have also allowed us to focus in providing alternatives to unneeded hospitalizations. Finally, the need for elder housing will continue to grow and we have just broken ground on a new low-income facility in Miramar and are expanding another.”

CHS provides a full continuum of healthcare and social services to the southeast Florida community. With a staff of over 2,500, CHS serves more than 6,000 people on a daily basis and operates four medical campuses, 36 facilities in Broward and Miami-Dade counties.

According to Pallin, what sets Catholic Health Services apart from other health services providers in the state includes a very broad set of services focused on the communities. This includes skilled nursing facilities, inpatient rehabilitation facilities, long term care, assisted living, elder housing, hospice, home health, and early childhood development.

“These services are available in Miami Dade, Broward, and hopefully soon in Palm Beach,” he says. “This broad set of integrated services is unique in the state. Specifically for our healthcare partners, we can provide a truly comprehensive approach to treatment and improved quality of life to their patients.”

Pallin is looking forward to the challenges that await him.

“Funding is always a challenge for providers in our segment while at the same time need will not diminish,” he says. “Advocacy for appropriate financial resources will be a continual battle. Staffing is also an ongoing concern that we need to address. The industry is suffering from this shortage and there are no quick solutions. We are evaluating all our resources to place the needed staff at the bedside while maintaining the wellbeing of our staff.”

He add that CHS is a catholic organization for all.

“We are inclusive and caring of all dimensions of those we serve including patient, residents, customers, our staff and families and the communities in which we reside,” he concludes. “We are impacting the lives of many communities.”

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