Juneau – Effective immediately, Leatha Merculieff will assume the position of SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) Senior Vice President and Chief of Operations. Previously, Merculieff served the dual roles of SEARHC Vice President and Wrangell Medical Center (WMC) Hospital Administrator, the latter requiring the management of Wrangell’s critical access hospital and long-term care services and ensuring the successful opening of the new healthcare campus. In her new role with the leadership team, Merculieff will oversee the operation of ancillary services for the entire Consortium, including Pharmacy, Laboratory, Radiology, Dental, Marketing, and Optometry services.
“It’s an honor to be named SEARHC Senior Vice President and Chief of Operations,” said Merculieff. “I am proud of what I was able to accomplish with the amazing staff in Wrangell as their Hospital Administrator, cementing the community as a premier healthcare destination in southern Southeast. I look forward to expanding my focus to the entire Consortium and ensuring that even the smallest communities in the SEARHC Care Network get the highest-quality care and attention.”
Merculieff was appointed WMC Hospital Administrator in April of 2019 and guided a seamless acquisition and integration of WMC operations, including the onboarding of nearly 100 staff. She introduced an in-house certified nursing assistant (CNA) training program with a goal of 100% local CNA staffing, and prioritized consistency in the Long-Term Care staffing model for the benefit of the nursing home residents. Merculieff navigated the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure the safe delivery of high-quality healthcare services, working closely with local and state entities. She also oversaw the construction of the newly opened 45,000 square foot healthcare campus, which includes Emergency Services, Acute Care, Long-Term Care, Primary Care, and ancillary services.
“Since her arrival at SEARHC, Ms. Merculieff has been a tremendous asset to the leadership team,” said SEARHC President and Chief Executive Officer Charles Clement. “Over the past two years, she displayed her importance to the organization by stepping in to assist in leading WMC and opening the new facility. I’m excited for her to lend her skill set to the continued improvement of services across the entire Consortium.”
Merculieff has more than 20 years of healthcare experience, displaying expertise in hospital operations, customer service and patient experience, community relations, business development and planning, as well as marketing and communications. In 2015, Merculieff came to SEARHC to serve as Vice President of Executive Administration after serving in leadership roles in Tribal health organizations from across the state.