Thanks to The Daily Times for a great article on Hugh "Murph" McLaughlin, a PRMC Board of Trustees member and former Chairman of our Board, who is retiring this Thursday after 26 years--the longest, consecutive time on our Board for any member in the 115 year history of PRMC.
From all of us at PRMC, congratulations Murph, fantastic job!
Hugh P. “Murph” McLaughlin retires Oct. 4 from the Peninsula Regional Medical Center Board of Trustees after 26 years of volunteer service to the medical center, its staff, physicians, volunteers and patients.
McLaughlin was first elected to the Peninsula Regional Medical Center Board of Trustees on Feb. 6, 1986, and served as its chairman from March 1995 to October 1998. He has seen its expansion from a general hospital to a major regional medical and trauma center, and shares his thoughts about what the future will bring to the business of health care.
What is your background?
I was raised in Salisbury and attended St. Frances De Sales grade school, Wicomico High School and received a bachelor’s degree in economics from Wheeling Jesuit University.
In what businesses were you engaged?
I was in real estate, construction and development in Wicomico and Worcester counties until 2008, when I retired.
Besides the hospital, what other community services have you been involved in?
I was past president of the Coastal Board of Realtors, Green Hill Yacht & Country Club and Salisbury Wicomico Economic Development. I was chairman of Greater Salisbury Committee and a board member for several local banks.
How did you get involved in the Board of Trustees at PRMC?
I developed an interest in health care, and after several conversations with hospital administration, I was nominated to serve on the Board of Trustees. My nomination was approved and I have served for the past 26 years.
What are some of the highlights and proudest accomplishments you have seen as a board member of PRMC over the years?
In the big picture, the transformation from a general hospital to a major regional medical center and trauma center has been amazing. I am also very proud that PRMC was recently named one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals by HealthGrades Inc.
Over the years, we added so many new services that allow people to be treated here. I am personally so proud that we added a neonatology unit, which allows many more infants and parents to stay here rather than face the additional stress of going across the bridge.
Another thing I am pleased with was fundraising efforts that helped us build the Layfield Tower and new emergency department.
Most of all it is the people who make this huge place work so well. First, the volunteers really help the hospital function. Secondly, I am also convinced that every board member, administrator, physician, nurse and employee takes pride in what they do. This is the mindset you must have to be the best.
You have been involved with the business of health care for a long time. Do you have any opinions on what should be done on a national level?
We have the best health care in the world and unfortunately a very complex system to pay for it. When you consider that over half of the reimbursement for health care comes from some government entity (Medicare and Medicaid), it essentially means the health care nationally is a 50 percent part-time “government worker.” Americans demand perfection when it comes to their health, so considering that we are not a homogenous society and we have way more diverse health issues and an aging population, one of two decisions will have to be made. One, does the government sustain this same level through borrowing or cutting other spending areas to divert to health care; or two, are we going to ration health care? Whichever happens, national health care should strive for more prevention, more efficiencies and lower utilization.
Now that you are off the board, what are you going to do?
I’m not sure, but I was thinking about volunteering to be a valet parker at the hospital. Think about all the different vehicles I could drive …