What is influence anyway? It’s having a vision and sharing it. It’s making things better by believing in people and bringing out their best.  That’s David Bernd, CEO at Sentara. He was recently named by Virginia Business as one of its 50 Most Influential Virginians

Dave Bernd, CEO, Sentara Healthcare

Dave Bernd, CEO, Sentara Healthcare

While at the helm of Sentara for nearly two decades, he’s had a vision. His vision for health care in Hampton Roads has been crystal clear—focus on quality and all else will fall into place.

And he’s been right.

“At Sentara, we take our time,” says Bernd, referring to the plans the organization takes the time to formalize.

It’s not easy to harness the work and intentions of 24,000 employees. These plans provide direction to teams of people across the organization.  Through his leadership and vision, the whole Sentara team is pulling in the same direction—toward quality.

From hospital staff and physicians to home care nurses and medical transport drivers, we’re all aware of the quality standards at Sentara and our role in attaining those goals.

That’s why when you look back, it’s not hard to explain why David Bernd has been honored as one of Virginia’s more influential leaders for his foresight of improved health care in Virginia.

Over the years, Bernd has been immediately behind innovations like electronic intensive care units or eICU® pioneered here at Sentara. Now more than 300 U.S. hospitals take advantage of eICU services to improve outcomes of some of the sickest patients in our hospitals.

While under his direction as administrator, in 1982 Sentara Norfolk General Hospital gained worldwide fame when America’s first in-vitro baby was born. This achievement alone improved the lives and quality of health care for many Virginia families.

Optima Health, the insurance arm of Sentara, has grown to provide coverage to about 455,000 people. A national leader in developing  electronic medical records under Bernd’s leadership, Sentara uses knowledge gained from the Sentara eCare® Health Network to improve quality, safety and outcomes. More than 100,000 Sentara patients can now access their own medical record, engage with their doctor or order a prescription using Sentara MyChart, the patient access to Sentara eCare. And results from more than 70 annual clinical studies conducted at Sentara Cardiovascular Research Institute are helping change heart care around the world.

A few years ago, Sentara made the decision to expand services to other communities and has now grown from a regional health care provider in Hampton Roads to a provider across Virginia. These are just a few of the improvements David Bernd has helped create in Hampton Roads and across the Commonwealth.

Future plans include enhancing patient centered care at Sentara with a focus on improving the lives and health of those with chronic diseases. For more details about accomplishments at Sentara, check out Sentara News Archives.