Massachusetts physician leader brings exceptional experience in operational excellence, growth and physician collaboration
BOSTON (Oct. 15) ̶ Tufts Medical Center today announced that Craig Best, MD, MPH, a physician leader with significant experience driving medical and operational growth within health care organizations, will serve as the new President and Chief Executive Officer of its 500-doctor Physicians Organization. Best, who is currently Medical Director, Business Development Lead and Chair of Obstetrics and Gynecology for Reliant Medical Group in Worcester, has a strong track record of leading strategic initiatives and quality improvement at Reliant and health care organizations in Massachusetts and elsewhere.
“The Tufts Medical Center Physicians Organization is known for its exceptional commitment to referring physicians and our affiliated health care organizations,” said Michael Wagner, MD, President and CEO of Tufts Medical Center. “Craig will do an outstanding job of not only providing strategic and operational leadership within the PO, but also in ensuring that we forge even stronger connections to physicians in the community.”
“This is a fantastic opportunity to help take a physicians’ organization known for its collaborative approach to medicine and commitment to community partners to an even higher level,” Best said. “I’m looking forward to working with Tufts Medical Center’s outstanding academic physicians. Just as importantly, I’m excited to enhance the great relationships Tufts MC has with its referral partners in the community, listening to their needs and making sure we provide the access and quality they’re looking for when their patients need tertiary-level care. As a practicing physician, I also know firsthand the importance of partnering with high quality, lower cost providers. Tufts Medical Center offers an exceptional value to referring physicians and their patients and I look forward to discussing this in the community.”
While at Reliant, Central Massachusetts’ largest physicians’ network with 500 doctors, Best secured key strategic partnerships, helped develop a narrow network health insurance product, significantly grew the OB/Gyn department and improved patient satisfaction. He also served as Chief of Obstetrics and Gynecology at St. Vincent Hospital in Worcester and is a clinical associate professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Massachusetts. Prior to joining Reliant in 2009 he served as Chief of Gynecology for Carney Medical Group at Carney Hospital. Between 1994 and 2006 he launched and led IVPCARE Inc., a Texas-based company that became the largest specialty pharmacy in the US serving the fertility sector.
At Tufts Medical Center, the principal teaching hospital of Tufts University School of Medicine, Best will work closely with Wagner and the department chairs to further the institutions’ academic mission of clinical care, teaching and research. He will assume his new role in January.
“Craig understands the intersection of academic medicine and community care. He also knows how to help an organization excel clinically and operationally,” said Paul Summergrad, MD, Chair of the Tufts Medical Center Physicians Organization Board and Chair of Psychiatry at Tufts Medical Center. “He has the skills and experience to work closely with our chairs and physicians to ensure the PO continues to thrive and that we address the challenges of healthcare reform with creativity and vigor.”
Best became interested in medicine as a result of personal experience when he was a teenager being treated for a bone disease. After his recovery and before attending medical school, he began working in hospitals as a janitor, then as an orderly and a nurse’s aide. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry from Pacific Union College in California and his MD and MPH at Loma Linda University School of Medicine and School of Public Health, also in California. He performed his residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of California San Francisco. He did fellowships at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Best lives with his wife and three children in Weston.
About Tufts Medical Center and Tufts Children's Hospital
Tufts Medical Center is an exceptional, not-for-profit, 415-bed academic medical center that serves adults and children. Located in downtown Boston, the Medical Center is a regional referral center for complex and high-risk care, and the principal teaching hospital for Tufts University School of Medicine. Tufts Children's Hospital is the full-service children's hospital of Tufts Medical Center and the principal pediatric teaching hospital of Tufts University School of Medicine. Tufts Medical Center is affiliated with the New England Quality Care Alliance (NEQCA), a network of more than 1,800 physicians throughout Eastern Massachusetts. Together with NEQCA and Lowell General Hospital, Tufts MC is part of Wellforce, a health system focused on innovations in care integration, population health management, access and operational excellence. For more information, please visit www.tuftsmedicalcenter.org.
Media Contact: Julie Jette