Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center said Thursday that its flagship Boston teaching hospital will get its own president, a move designed to give the health system’s chief executive more time to focus on strategy.
The new position at the medical center will be filled by Peter Healy, who is currently head of the Beth Israel Deaconess hospital in Milton. He will start in Boston on Jan. 1.
The switch will allow Kevin Tabb, chief executive of the Beth Israel Deaconess network, to develop and implement a “system-wide strategy” and increase his fund-raising work.
Tabb, a physician who took the top job at Beth Israel Deaconess almost five years ago, said the changes will help the health system weather challenges in the health care industry. Those challenges include a move to new payment models, pressure to control costs, and the consolidation among competitors.
“With all of that happening, it’s clear to us that we need a structure that serves us well in the future,” Tabb, 52, said in an interview.
Beth Israel Deaconess has grown under Tabb’s leadership. It operates a large teaching hospital in Boston’s Longwood neighborhood and three community hospitals in Milton, Needham, and Plymouth. Across the four hospitals, patient discharges increased 6.6 percent from 2014 to 2015, Beth Israel Deaconess said.
The health system also has affiliations with six other hospitals, and is seeking affiliations with more.
Tabb hinted that a name change is also on the horizon, to help distinguish Beth Israel Deaconess’s big teaching hospital from the broader health system of which it is a part.
“We certainly are giving that a lot of thought,” he said. “There is absolutely something in the works.”
The new name won’t be drastically different; it will still include the words “Beth Israel” and “Deaconess,” Tabb added.
His role will shift as the health system embarks on the biggest fund-raising campaign in its history, though he did not say how much it plans to raise or for what specific projects.
Healy, 49, is the chief executive of Beth Israel Deaconess-Milton, where he has helped the community hospital attract more patients and turn around its finances. In his new job as president of the teaching hospital in Boston, he will oversee patient services, operations, management, and finance. Healy previously worked at Boston Medical Center and Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital.
“To lead one of the premier academic medical centers in the country is really an honor for me,” he said.
With more than $2 billion in annual revenue, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center is among the biggest health care provider systems in the state, but much smaller than rival Partners HealthCare, which had more than $11 billion in revenue last year.
Beth Israel Deaconess, a nonprofit, is seeking a clinical affiliation with MetroWest Medical Center, which runs for-profit hospitals in Framingham and Natick. That deal is under review by the Health Policy Commission, an agency that monitors health care industry transactions that could raise costs for consumers.
A contracting organization affiliated with Beth Israel Deaconess, called Beth Israel Deaconess Care Organization, or BIDCO, is planning to add MetroWest Medical Center and New England Baptist Hospital to its contracting network. Those deals are also under review.