At its 99th Annual Meeting on Wednesday, June 14, the American Hospital Association and the Connecticut Hospital Association recognized Kurt A. Barwis, FACHE, president and CEO of Bristol Hospital and Health Care Group, as Connecticut’s 2017 Grassroots Champion.
Barwis was recognized for his exceptional leadership in advocating for hospital priorities such as eliminating the hospital tax and raising Medicaid rates. He also has dedicated considerable time to educating lawmakers on major issues impacting hospitals today.
Barwis, who has led Bristol Hospital since 2006, has more than 30 years of management and leadership experience in community hospital administration, management consulting and entrepreneurial business environments to his work. He joined the CHA Board of Trustees in 2007, serving since 2010 as chairman of the CHA CEO Forum, and he also is a member of the Committee on Hospital Finance and the Financial Oversight Committee.
In addition to his leadership at Bristol Hospital, Barwis is regent of the Board of Directors for the Connecticut Association of Healthcare Executives, having previously served as a past president and co-chairman of the Sponsorship and Audit Committees. He is a member of the Board of Directors for Qualidigm, the Medicare Quality Improvement Organization contractor for the state of Connecticut, and chairman of the Legislative Committee of the Central Connecticut Chamber of Commerce.
Barwis received his bachelor’s degree in business administration from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a master’s of business administration from LaSalle University. He is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives, and was a licensed public accountant from 1999 to 2007.
The AHA Grassroots Champion Award, given annually to one person in each state, was created to recognize hospital leaders who effectively educate elected officials about how major issues affect hospitals’ roles in the community, who have expanded the base of community support for hospitals, and who have been advocates for hospitals and patients.